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Colonel Gray, Three Oaks teams meet in exciting final of Aidan K. Harrington Memorial basketball tournament at KISH


KENSINGTON, P.E.I. —

The final of the fourth annual Aidan K. Harrington Memorial basketball tournament turned into a game of adjustments.

The Colonel Gray Team Two Colonels pulled out a 56-50 victory over the Three Oaks Team Two Axemen at Kensington Intermediate-Senior High School (KISH) on Saturday afternoon. The tournament honours a former KISH basketball standout and male athlete of the year, who passed away suddenly in 2016 at the age of 20.
“It was a very fast-paced game,” said Axemen coach John Brennan. “(The Colonels) are a very fast team so we had to change our lineup and style of play to try and match their speed.
“I think we did in the second half and came back and we didn’t hit shots, they hit shots so they won.”
The Colonels held a 12-point lead late in the second quarter, but a three-pointer by the Axemen’s Connor Lilly cut the deficit to 32-23 at halftime.



Second half
The Axemen opened the second half on an 11-2 run to tie the score 34-34 4:25 into the third quarter.
“We put our three-quarter-court press on and that got our guys running and moving and it shook the rust off,” explained Brennan. “It gave them some trouble and caused us to match up with their speed.
“They are a very, very fast team and Gray can run, so we had to run with them.
“It was a good game to play early in the season because they pushed us. Win or lose, both teams made each other better.”
Colonel Gray made its own adjustments and led 43-40 after three quarters. A 9-2 run gave the Charlottetown-based Colonels a 52-42 cushion with 3:31 left in the final 10-minute period.
“We are a run-and-gun team and that press really slowed us down and threw us off,” said Colonels coach Shawn Winslow. “Once we figured it out and got running again, we were comfortable. We are a comfortable team when we run.”
Winslow admitted the Axemen’s pressure made for some nervous moments.
 “They put on a strong press and my guys weren’t ready for it,” added Winslow. “I was panicked to be truthful.
“We gained some composure, figured it out and the boys kept playing. I was proud of them.”
Offensively, Charles Chang poured in a game-high 21 points to lead the Colonels. Jzay Nguyn added 12 points.
Shawn Aitken (10), Will Somers (10) and Clark Farrell (8) were the top scorers for the Summerside-based Axemen.
The Colonels’ victory avenged a recent 16-point loss to the Axemen.
“The guys came back (Saturday) and played strong and TOSH played great,” said Winslow. “It was an exciting game.”
The Harrington family, which organized the tournament, is donating proceeds from the tournament to three-year-old Summerside native Camden Kingyens, who is undergoing cancer treatment at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax.


Scores

Aidan K. Harrington Memorial basketball tournament scores:
Round Robin
Three Oaks Two 56 Charlottetown Rural Three 36
Three Oaks Thee 58 Charlottetown Rural Three 57
Kensington 53 Kinkora 39
Colonel Gray Two 88 Kinkora 24
Colonel Gray Two 81 Kensington 51
Cross-over Game
Charlottetown Rural 74 Kinkora 53
Semifinals
Three Oaks Two 67 Kensington 43
Colonel Gray Two 67 Three Oaks Three 40
Bronze-Medal Game
Three Oaks Three 82 Kensington 62
Championship Game
Colonel Gray Two 56 Three Oaks Two 50


Jason.simmonds@journalpioneer.com
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