Norsemen sack Spartans in junior finals

[attach]2976[/attach]Rebecca Daly had her worst shooting performance of the season but still managed to lead the North Toronto Norsemen to a 34-16 victory over the Silverthorn Spartans at the junior girls basketball citys Nov. 16.

Despite missing some open looks, co-captain Daly led all scorers with 13 points and was a force defensively recording six steals as well as double-digit rebounds.

“Today my shooting started slow,” Daly said. “It was frustrating, but I figured if the shots weren’t falling, I just have to devote myself to defence and help the team that way.”

North Toronto stifled the Spartan’s attack, controlling the glass at both ends and not giving up a basket until the five-minute mark of the first quarter.

“I think what it came down to was everyone was working together as a unit,” Daly said.

The Norsemen displayed a balanced attack that looked more organized and saw fellow captain, guard Chloe Hall, score nine with four steals. Centre Sarah Knee added eight with a complement of blocks.

The trio, all over six-feet tall, was the difference in the game, moving the ball quickly and effectively, while keeping the Spartans’ offence to the outside.

Norsemen coach Curtis Anderson was ecstatic with their performance.

“It really started in our end. I mean 16 points against, four a quarter, it can’t get much better than that,” Anderson said. “Rebecca wasn’t hitting all her shots, but she put on just an incredible defensive effort.

“She showed an ability to control the pace of the game, and really slowed down their tempo with her presence in our end.”

[attach]2977[/attach]Silverthorn’s point guard and captain Dajana Solomun displayed nice ball-handling, as she drove to the lane on several occasions. Still, she was unable to find open outlets to pass and was forced to throw up some wild shots.

Solomun tried to bring the Spartans back in the third with a couple field goals and she led Silverthorn in scoring with seven points. However, at times it seemed as if she was taking on the Norsemen’s defence all on her own.

Her frustration became clear in the fourth quarter as she delivered a couple hard fouls in desperate attempts to steal the ball. Meanwhile, North Toronto continued to pass swiftly and run down the clock with each possession.

Karen Johnson, North Toronto’s staff advisor to the team accepted the championship trophy on behalf of the school and couldn’t help but suggest the possibility of a bright future in basketball.

“I’m so excited for the girls,” Johnson said. “We’re such a new school, and the team is basically all grade nines.

“I think you could see us here next year too.”

Next stop for the Norsemen is a birth in the OFSAA Junior Girl’s Basketball Tournament.