In the moments leading up to tip off, you’d think it was any regular basketball game. The boys were lined up on the court, Somto at centre, with Bruno, Brendan, Casper and Nathan surrounding him. Clipboards in hand and game faces on, Coaches Mr. Gage and Mr. Sullivan hovered on the sidelines.
But, this was no regular game.
The stands overflowed with a sea of red, contrasting with the few rows of yellow on the opposing end. We were just as hungry as the team for a win. The rowers were rowdy, and it was clear they meant business when Jacob P, dared to ask Mr. Felix to “Scoot down to make room for the rest of the boys” who shirtless with the letters spelling BRENTWOOD across each of their chests.
Thankfully, the boys found somewhere to sit. Teachers, parents, students, graduates, locals, and even Nick H with his stuffed ferret shawl had all come together to watch the game.
On the court, the teams were sizing each other up. Somto stands at a towering 6’6, but had he met his match? The ref threw the ball up and the boys jumped, battling in the air, seemingly reaching higher than humanly possible. The ball was tipped to Bruno, securing the Brentwood possession.
This was no ordinary game. This was Brentwood vs Shawnigan at home. This was Showcase.
Following an opening 14-0 lead for Brentwood, the quarters of the game flew by. Brendan led with three deep treys in the first four minutes of the game, and Bruno and Nathan drove the ball hard to the hoop, each finishing with their soft shots that always seemed to just float the ball in.
On defence, the strategy was clear. Don’t let Shawnigan get the ball into the paint. Casper and Somto played tight and tough on the tall opposing post players, denying passes and stealing loose balls. Ian and Will kept the ball moving around the court, looking for the open players in the paint, and teaching Shawnigan never to leave an open man under the net. Key blocks came from Mide and Johnny, denying any shooter that dared to try and send a ball to the hoop.
Up by 20 at half, dominance came from all players on the team. After pulling away from the trailing Shawnigan in the third, Fynn, Grant, and Jeff continued to increase their lead. Everyone on the team had done their part to battle hard for a win, and make their school proud. The experience of Showcase is one like no other - the emotional magic that is felt not only on the court, but in the crowds. Brentwood not only plays and wins as a team, they play and win as a school.
Thank you to the Shawnigan team, coaches and fans for coming out with lots of competition and sportsmanship. Thank you to the Brentwood staff for organizing such an incredible event, and the Brentwood students for supporting their team. Thank you and congratulations to the Brentwood coaches and players for putting on a great game. Good luck to both teams as their season progress.
Alex T, Allard ‘18