It’s been an incredible six days of basketball action in Palmerston North’s Fly Palmy Arena, and now the Secondary Schools AA Champions for 2023 have been found – a massive congratulations to Westlake Girls High School and Wellington College for taking out their respective titles! Westlake secure a Back2Back, winning last year’s AA Championships, and Wellington take out their first title in the history of the Secondary Schools Nationals.
AA Girls Grand Final: Westlake Girls 67, St Andrew’s College 53
In the AA Girls Grand Final, Westlake Girls High School took out a 67-53 win over St Andrews College earn the girl’s title.
Both teams struggled from the field in this one; Westlake shooting 32% (24-73) while St Andrews managed just 25% (22-86) – including a 2-35 effort from beyond the arc. Westlake won the rebounding battle 65-50, but were also guilty of 20 turnovers vs St Andrews 12 on the night, with the latter racking up 12 steals along with 6 blocks. But St Andrews couldn’t contain Westlake’s consistent scoring ability, with the Aucklanders outscoring their opponents in all four quarters.
Westlake was led by a huge 19 points, 18 rebound effort from their captain Rebecca Moors, which earned her MVP. She was supported by 19 points and 6 rebounds from Zenthia Stowers, while Emma-Kaye Schroeder had a 14-points, 10-rebound double-double and Kodee Williams-Sefo chipped in with 8.
For St Andrew’s, Lauren Whittaker was dominant with her 18 points and 19 rebounds, with Rafferty Powell adding 12 points and 9 rebounds. Niamh Chamberlain scored 8 and Ophelia Powell 7, while Kavanah Lene registered 4 blocks.
Box score: http://bbnz.link/ty6nc
AA Boys Grand Final: Waimea College 72, Wellington College 77
In the AA Boys Grand Final, Wellington College emerged victorious over Waimea College with a tense 77-72 win, handing them their first ever Secondary School National title. After Waimea’s Jonty Bond scored on a layup with 13 seconds remaining to bring them to within three, Troy Plumtree slotted home a pair of free throws to seal Wellington’s win.
Both teams were evenly balanced across the major statistical categories; Wellington shooting a better percentage from the field (41% vs 34%) while Waimea outrebounded their opponents 48-42.
Murphy Rodgers led Wellington with his 20 points and 6 rebounds, while MVP Dov Silberstein poured in 17 and Plumtree racked up an impressive 19 points, 13 rebounds (6 offensive) and 4 blocks. Ezekiel Whitfield added 9 points and 7 rebounds, Sam Mastreani with 8.
Waimea was led by Hayden Jones’ 22 points and 15 rebounds, with Kaden Bracey adding 17 points and 7 rebounds. Coen Williams had a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds, Bond 11 and Lucas Trench 8 and 6. William Blight also impressed defensively with his 5 blocks.
Box score: http://bbnz.link/tqok4
Most Valuable Players
Girls – Rebecca Moors, Westlake Girls High School
Boys – Dov Silberstein, Wellington College
Tournament Teams – Girls
Waimanu Clarken – Mt Albert Grammar School
Maddie Kerr – Napier Girls High School
Pahlyss Hokianga – Tauranga Girls College
Elise Gilbert – Hamilton Girls High School
Kaelani Albert-Neha – Hamilton Girls High School
Kavanah Lene – St Andrews College
Kodee Williams-Sefo – Westlake Girls High School
Lauren Whittaker – St Andrews College
Zenthia Stowers – Westlake Girls High School
Rebecca Moors – Westlake Girls High School
Tournament Teams – Boys
Dante Matakatea – Mount Albert Grammar School
Jackson Kiss – Auckland Grammar School
Tamatoa Isaac – Christ’s College
Christian Vano – Rotorua Boys High School
Kobe Reed – St Johns College
Jonty Bond – Waimea College
Murphy Rodgers – Wellington College
Hayden Jones – Waimea College
Troy Plumtree – Wellington College
Dov Silberstein – Wellington College