Vanier girls end 7-year drought

Prairie River’s Taryn Barnes-Roberts does her best to keep the basketball away from G.P. Vanier’s Anyka Desnaulniers during action Nov. 20 in High Prairie.

Chris Clegg
South Peace News

It has been almost seven years since the Donnelly G.P. Vanier girl’s basketball team defeated the Prairie River Raiders of High Prairie.

No more, as the Vipers defeated the Raiders 37-31 in the opening game of the Smoky River Junior High School Basketball League season Nov. 20.

The last time the Vipers defeated PRJH in regular season play was Jan. 11, 2012 when they won 34-24.

After the game, Vipers’ coach Michelle Pitre estimated it was “at least five years” since they won against PR.

The run-and-gun highly entertaining game featured both teams running the floor at will and expending tremendous amounts of energy. Vanier enjoyed quarter leads of 9-6, 15-11 and 25-24.

PRJH led 6-2 before the Vipers went on a 9-0 run to take the lead they would never give up, except when it was 18-17 in the third quarter.

The difference in the game was clearly the fast break points. The Vipers sunk six straight layups in the second half and took advantage of every break PRJH gave them.

Meanwhile, PRJH could not get enough shots to fall to keep up.

Kayla Bessette scored 15 points to lead the Vipers while Anyka Desnaulniers and Gabriele Leclerc each added eight. Taylor Chalifoux, Daysh Tokarz and Tasheila Boyer completed the scoring with two points each.

Cassidy Barry scored 20 points to lead PRJH while Abby Arams added six. Anna Nobert and Haley Billings each added a bucket and Faith Fortier a free throw.

The Vipers play their home opener Nov. 27 when they host High Prairie St. Andrew’s while PRJH travels to Gift Lake.

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