The Steel City Slam basketball club had both of their U-17 teams competing in the 2019 Ontario Basketball sanctioned Hoopdome Tournament.
The U-17 Team Blue faired well in the ‘A/’AA’ division, losing in the bronze medal game.
Team ‘Orange’ had a tremendous run over the course of the weekend in the ‘AAA’ division (highest division for Ontario basketball) bringing the bronze medal back to Sault Ste. Marie.
Game 1: The Slam would play their first game of the 2019 season vs a seasoned Collingwood team, who has played 12 games in tournaments already. In a back and fourth affair, Collingwood would get the best of the Slam team with a 61-57 win. Chase Peplow would lead the Slam attack with 22 points.
Game 2: In game 2 Steel City Slam would hit the hardwood against the Gloucester Wolverines out of Ottawa. With multiple lead changes throughout the game, Steel City Slam would be the team with the lead when the final buzzer sounded. A 66-60 win. Chase Peplow would lead the charge again for the Slam with 18 points, while Emery Hannah would add 11 for the winners.
Game 3: Steel City would see another Sault team in the quarter finals, as they would face the Algoma Jr. Thunderbirds. The Slam started the game executing on all cylinders taking a 17-8 lead into the second quarter. Teams would exchange baskets back and forth throughout the rest of the game. Algoma’s quick guard play had to figure out a way to stop Steel City Slams size. In the end Steel City Slam was too much for the Thunderbirds and punched their ticket into the semi-finals, with a 55-50 victory. Johnny Post would lead the Slam attack with 17 points, while Logan Whitmell would add 14 and Chase Peplow would add 11.
Game 4: The Slam would now be set to face the Toronto Triple Threat. One of the most storied clubs in Canada. Toronto Triple Threat is a top club year in and year out. With size, speed and skill, the Slam would have to be at their best as it would be a battle. And a battle it was. Before facing the Slam, Toronto Triple Threat was rolling past the competition beating teams by 30 +. Steel City brought everything they had, and with under 2 minutes to go had the game within reach down 6 points. But it wouldn’t be their day, as Triple Threat hit key free throws down the stretch and secured a semifinal victory 85-74. Triple Threat will remember a few things though, one of which is Chase Peplow. Chase lead all scorers with a game high 30 points, and was able to secure 22 rebounds and 5 blocks. Logan Whitmell would add 12 and Emery Hannah was able to get into the paint and posed a lot of problems for the Triple Threat defense. He ended the game with 10 points and a slew of assists.
Game 5: With the bronze medal on the line, the Slam would come full circle, seeing the Collingwood Blazers; the team they saw in game 1 of the tourney. Well history would not repeat itself for Collingwood. The Slam came out for redemption and redemption is what they got. A 61-53 win would secure bronze for Steel City. Devon Dorrance would lead the Slam attack with 15 points, including 2 from beyond the arc, while Emery Hannah would add 13 as well.
Next up for the U-17 Slam team is London, Ontario for the Gold Medal tournament. They will be accompanied by our U-19 Slam team who will also be playing in the Gold Medal tourney in the U-19 category.