The 17th Geneva Rutherford Girls’ Basketball Tournament turned out to be another year of bragging rights for two strong girls’ basketball programs.
The Bishop Michael Eldon Warriors followed up last year’s championship win of the Junior Girls’ Division, with a victory over the Freedom Baptist Warriors.
BMES dominated the contest from the opening tip on their way to the 23-10, victory.
Anjene Stubbs put on a show in the championship finale, with her eight-point output and received Most Valuable Player (MVP) honors.
The MVP was proud of the overall effort from her teammates and praised their fearlessness all-tournament.
“They played excellent. They played with no fear and I like how they put the effort into the team work and we’re ready for more games,” Stubbs said.
Teammate Tayla Stubbs said their run through tournament was an early indication of their success in the tournament.
“I feel good. We worked hard and we won all our games in the tournament, so I knew we were going to win,” she expressed.
Shemea Major was also proud of the tournament win. She voiced that hard work pays off, which is something they will continue to do.
“I know that we put in a lot of work throughout this season. Hard work pays off. We have a lot of stuff we need to work on, but we’ll get better as we go on.”
BMES coach, Wayne Smith, expressed how proud he was of the girls’ effort the entire tournament.
After going undefeated during the Grand Bahama Secondary School Athletic Association regular season and this tournament, he gave credit to his assistant coach, Eustacia Smith for the time she put in with the girls.
Smith said that their hard work in weekend practices was reflected on the court.
“The girls are seasoned, they want to play and they want to learn the game. We still have much work to do. I think we will get it done. We have some very, very excellent seventh graders. Ninety percent of the team is seventh graders … Overall they have done extremely well throughout the season, winning this tournament back-to-back is a tremendous feat.”
This is currently Eustacia’s first year coaching with the BMES Warriors. Her message to them was simple and has translated successfully thus far.
“I told them once you practice and once we do what we practice, we should be able to execute it well and that’s what they came out and did.
“We had some little fumbles, but we were able to pull it off and put their talents to great use. And once we keep it we’ll be able to accomplish great things.”
Next was the senior girls’ championship and it went down to the wire. The Mystic Marlins faced the Tabernacle Falcons, their foe from last year’s championship tilt.
After a last second field goal fell short for the Falcons, the Mystic Marlins escaped narrowly with a 36-35 win. Thyrell Thompson led the way for the Marlins and was named the 2017 Senior Girls’ MVP.
Marlins’ coach, Kevon Spence, put the spotlight on his girls’ hard work.
“They came through with the power of God and power of will. And so, I’m grateful I coach the best girls in Nassau and in Grand Bahama and probably in the entire Bahamas. I am blessed.”
The Mystic Marlins must now defend their senior girls’ crown in The Bahamas National High School Basketball Championships on March 2.
The Marlins will be back in short order. For Spence, after this win, it was all about getting his girls’ refocused for the task at hand.
“We’re hungry, we always stay hungry. You never see a championship that we don’t want to win. This tournament was awesome in that it helped us to be ready for Nationals. We’ll go home, retool, come back and we’ll be focused again and see if we can execute our plays and just play Marlins basketball, and see if we could defend our title.”
Published Tuesday, February 28, 2017