Maple Creek Rebels finish undefeated in SWAC

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The host Maple Creek Rebels defeated the Herbert Laurels 89-55 in the championship final to finish the SWAC boy's basketball season undefeated.

The Rebels outscored the Laurels 30-10 in the third quarter to put the game out of reach and coasted to the win. They had led by 10 points after one quarter and nine at halftime as the win was still in doubt.

But the Rebels responded with 10 straight points to open the third quarter and outscored the visitors 20-2 over the first six minutes of the second half led by 11 third-quarter points from grade 12 Mike Gordon.

Laurels grade 12 guard Cory Braun did everything he could to try and keep his team in the game, scoring 22 points, including five three-pointers. Colton Unger added 14 points but it was not enough to counter the Rebels balanced attack as they got points from nine different players.

The Rebels were led by 6'3 centre Brett Gustafson with 22 points, including eight in the opening quarter.

"We knew we had to execute in pushing the floor. We practiced that, we pushed that, and it pretty much worked because that is where most of our points came from," said Gustafson.

Gordon added 16 points, grade 10 guard Thabo Mthembu hit four three-pointers for 12 points, Mario Ladouceur added 11 points, and Don He chipped in 10 as all five Rebels starters finished in double digits.

Gustafson was playing in his first SWAC championship game and said it was a good feeling.

"Oh definitely, my senior year, my last home game ever, it definitely feels good!"

The Rebels will have a difficult road to Hoopla, including a loaded conference tournament next weekend with the likes of Shaunavon, Assiniboia, Moose Jaw Riverview, and Caronport.

"We just have to carry the momentum into conferences and work our way from there and hopefully win a provincial championship," said Gustafson.

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