Nick Chrabaszcz drives around a Vanier player during the T-Birds’ home game on Jan. 23. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)

T-Birds take Dover Bay to OT in home finale

Cowichan Secondary plays best game of boys basketball season

The Cowichan Thunderbirds put forth their best effort of the senior boys basketball season on Tuesday night in a narrow 83-77 overtime loss at home against Dover Bay.

“Dover is a strong team,” Cowichan head coach Casey Parsons said. “They took it to us the last time we played in their gym so it was great to see the guys respond the way they did.”

The T-Birds led 35-34 at halftime, and the game remained close until the end. Clayton Bergstrom knocked down two clutch free throws with just seconds left to tie the score at 75-75 and sent the game to overtime.

“In OT we had a hard time getting clean looks in the half court, and Dover Bay grabbed a couple key offensive rebounds that sealed things,” Parsons said. “It was a gutsy effort from our guys, and an exciting game to be a part of.”

The senior players, in particular, wanted to go out on a positive note.

“There were several standout individual performances on our side, but it was our compete level collectively that gave us an opportunity to win that game,” Parsons stated. “As a team we played with a chip on our shoulder and got after it. It was our last home game of the season, and for our graduating players, their last chance to play in our barn. It was clear that meant something to them.”

At home against Georges P. Vanier the previous Thursday, the T-Birds were beaten 69-48 by the Towhees.

“We put up a good fight, but unfortunately we got behind early and had a difficult time slowing down their big man. There were a few back to back possessions where we chipped away at the lead, but in the second half we let them go on a couple 6-0 runs which put the game away.”

The T-Birds visit Nanaimo District and Vanier next week as they prepare for North Islands at Dover Bay on Feb. 13 and 14.

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