Destiny Discover

Titans compete in final Silver Fox championship contest

By Larry Moko

One of Ontario’s longest running boys’ high school basketball tournaments celebrated its 50th anniversary this weekend in Hamilton.

And although the Bishop Tonnos Titans didn’t capture top honours at the two-day, 16-team Silver Fox Invitational, they did win three games to reach the final of the prestigious event.

In the championship contest, the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic league representatives lost 76-53 to the host Saltfleet Storm.

“It’s been a long tournament,” said Matthew Timms who, along with his wife Ashley, coach the Titans. “We played well in three hard-fought games against three fantastic opponents.”

Tonnos got past the St. Francis Phoenix of St. Catharines, London’s A.B. Lucas Vikings and the Holy Names Knights of Windsor.

The Titans and Storm were then tied 18-18 at the end of the first quarter before the Storm surged ahead, building leads of 41-27 at the half and 63-36 after three quarters.

“Unfortunately,” Timms said, “we were missing two of our key rotational pieces.

One got injured during the tournament and the other got hurt before which left us a little shorthanded. But we battled. We just ran out of gas.”

Five players scored in double figures for Saltfleet – Jumic Aschioso (15), Tyson Gooden (14), Presley Weeks (14), Anmol Sidhu (12) and tournament MVP Mo Bilal (12).

For Tonnos, the top point-getter was Justus Dryden, with 10. Nick Galli and Luca Pasalic added nine apiece.

Galli was named a first-team all-star and also received the Jim Lyle Award for team leadership.

“Nick has been truly special to coach this tournament,” Timms said. “He played outstanding. His decision-making was amazing. I appreciated the effort and energy that he brought.”

Said Ashley: “We’re so proud of every single guy on our team. And we’re excited for the rest of the season.”

It was Saltfleet’s first Silver Fox title.

“It’s maybe only the third time that a public school (from Hamilton) has ever won it,” said Jim Weatherbee, a Storm assistant coach and director of the Silver Fox since 1992.
The timing of the championship win was also “special” for Weatherbee because he announced he will be stepping down from his tournament organizational duties this year.

“It worked out beautifully for me,” he said.

In the semifinal round, Saltfleet downed the St. Thomas More Knights, 59-35. More’s Basam Bilal, who was named the defensive player of the tournament, was also chosen to the second all-star team.

Tonnos reached the Silver Fox final once before – in 2012 when it lost 73-62 to Oakville’s Loyola Hawks.






Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham

Photo by Gerry Graham
Photo by Gerry Graham