Kondors building on success

After five years with the junior girls at KSS, coach Ruth Stefanek says she is looking at long-term development

Kondor Grace Yacoboski (#18) attacks the basket against Dover Bay on Friday night.

With the basketball season taking flight, the Kwalikum Secondary School junior girls are looking to find some of last year’s success.

Last season, then in Grade 9, this squad was solid all season and capped off a successful run with a trip to the provincials in Richmond.

Friday night saw an exhibition game against the Dover Bay Dolphins, their first test against the AAA team. Dover Bay came away with the 31–14 victory but it was a good introduction to what the junior Kondors are up against this season.

Head coach Ruth Stefanek, who’s been with the girls since their Grade 6 year, is looking forward to another season and the challenges they’re going to face.

“We’ll have some major competition this year, being a smaller school. We have our work cut out playing against some of the bigger schools this year,” Stefanek said.

With just 10 girls, there will be a nice mixture of Grade 9’s coming in for some games with the Grade 10 team throughout the season.

“We don’t have a very big team to begin with so we’ll be rotating some of the Grade 9’s in. We have a lot of girls at the Grade 9 level so we’ll be bringing in a few from time to time.”

Although the junior girls playoffs aren’t until February, Stefanek is more focused on getting there with the group in tact. The regular season starts in a few weeks and with a small roster, staying healthy is a big part of being successful.

“It’s gonna be hard to keep them all healthy and playing, but having the younger group of nine’s will be a big help. That’s going to be our goal though, to make sure everyone is healthy and that they get lots of experience with game time.”

There was a bit of a concern about finding a coach for the Grade 9’s this year but Brian Nikula was able to fill that role for KSS. It’s a move that helps not only the development of the younger players, but gives them a chance to gain more playing time at the nine and 10 level.

Coach Stefanek and the junior Kondor’s will face plenty of tough tests this season but will be ready to meet.

Having this same group over the last five years has helped develop some good chemistry, something they hope to keep going with the next group, too.

“The idea is to have as many girls playing at both the Grade 9 and 10 level. We’ve been very lucky that Brian was able to step up and coach the nine’s this year. We’ve got 15 girls coming in this year for the Grade 9 team so the numbers are there and it’s going to be great for them to get the playing time and be able to call them up throughout the season,” Stefanek said.

Just Posted

Homes, roads flooded in Whiskey Creek following downpour

Crews aid flooded homeowners while roads near Hwy 4 closed Sunday morning

SOGI rally disrupts school board meeting, but business carries on

Chilliwack school board makes statement in support of B.C.-wide gender identity teaching resource

Heavy snowfall closes Mount Washington for the day

Road to ski resort deemed unsafe, “high avalanche danger”

Oceanside Generals stun Victoria, 3-2

Junior B club snaps seven-year losing streak to Cougars

Man receives four-year sentence for stabbing Good Samaritan near Qualicum Beach

Jeffrey Brian MacDonald sentenced to additional 242 days in jail

Parksville MakerSpace members ride the rails

New room added for model train enthusiasts; workshop set for Jan. 21

UPDATE: Ferries sailing again after stormy weather caused cancellations

B.C. Ferries cancelled numerous sailings around Vancouver Island today, Jan. 21

Vessel washed ashore in Campbell River during last night’s storm

A vessel appears to have gotten loose and washed to shore on… Continue reading

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Final phase of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy trials to kick off in B.C.

Doctors hope to get psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy legalized in Canada and the U.S. by 2021

Wind warning back in effect around Vancouver Island

80 km/h winds expected Saturday, Jan. 20, on east coast of Island, 100 km/h on west coast

UPDATE: Police continue to seek missing Qualicum Beach woman

Oceanside RCMP requesting public assistance in locating Carmel Georgina Gilmour

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

Most Read