The Gym at Lakeland College is busy this weekend with the buzz of a provincial title on the line and a shot at nationals waiting in the wings.
The basketball program is already in winners row with personnel on both men’s and women’s teams scoring ACAC recognition.
Awards for the women:
- Tori Dugan – North Player of the Year and ACAC All Conference First Team
- Bilge Topaloglu – ACAC All Conference First Team
- Hailey Somers – ACAC All Conference Second Team
Awards for the men:
- Artavius Holiday – ACAC All Conference First Team
Also, coach Chris King has got the vote for Women’s Basketball North, Coach of the Year. It’s the fifth time he has garnered the accolade.
King says it’s fantastic to have so many players recognized by the league.
“Hailey Somers has been a heart and soul player in the women’s program here for the past four years. Bilge [Topaloglu] and Tori [Dugan] lead the league in different statistical categories. Bilge obviously being one of the better post players in the year, leading the league at 6′ 4” and dominating defensively for us. And Tori Dugan is surely one of the best point guards in our Conference and really controls our team.”
King salutes the achievements of the male Rustlers program.
“On the men’s side, Artavius he’s been a stronghold for the men’s program for a long time. He’s a really athletic forward that can score and defend. And really as he goes, they go. He is really the backbone of their team. So it’s great to see Artavius get rewarded and our men obviously going to the final four playing good basketball right now.”
The action on the court gets going Friday at 6 p.m. The Gold Medal game goes Saturday at 8 p.m.
King notes either way they are going to nationals.
“Ultimately as long as we win this semi-final we will be going to nationals, whether we get first or second that’s the key. If things turn out well, Monday morning I’ll be a happy man and I’ll feel a little bit of weight lifted off our shoulders as we have been waiting for this opportunity for two years.”