The Williams Lake Thunder senior girls basketball team celebrates a win at the Clarence Fulton Classic in Vernon this past weekend.

The Williams Lake Thunder senior girls basketball team celebrates a win at the Clarence Fulton Classic in Vernon this past weekend.

Thunder rally to Fulton Classic win

The Williams Lake Thunder senior girls’ basketball team drove through all challengers on the weekend.

The Williams Lake Thunder senior girls’ basketball team drove through all challengers on the weekend, bringing home the Clarence Fulton Classic championship from Vernon.

The Thunder edged the Princess Margaret Mustangs 58-53 Saturday night in the final to take the title.

Ana Lomavatu, Latasha Diaz, Montana Reid and Dakota Bailey were the team’s top scorers. Reid also hauled down the most rebounds.

Thunder coach Raj Lalli said it was a tough battle, but added the girls’ late free throw shooting proved to be the difference maker.

“During the first quarter both teams struggled to score,” Lalli said. “It was about 7-5 after the first quarter. By half we’d taken the lead 25-21, but they took the lead from us with about four minutes to go.”

Lomavatu then hit the Thunder’s only three-pointer of the weekend to put her team back on top with time winding down.

“From there it became more of a free throw game where we made three out of our five to win by five,” Lalli said.

The Thunder began its tournament with a 61-39 win over Trail’s J.L. Crowe Hawks, before beating the host Clarence Fulton, 52-47, to advance to Saturday night’s final.

Lomavatu, Reid and Diaz were the team’s top scorers in both games.

“This was probably the best tournament that this team of girls I’ve been coaching the past three years has had,” Lalli said. “They were mentally strong, emotionally strong,  and they had no major lapses in defence or offence.

“Even when we struggled in the first quarter in the final there were still a lot of opportunities — it just seemed like there was a lid on the basket but they kept pushing.”

Following the tournament Lomavatu was awarded most valuable player, while Diaz was named first team all-star.

Coming up for the Thunder and the Columneetza Cougars senior girls basketball team is a tournament, this weekend, at Correlieu Secondary School.

For results check a future Tribune.