JIM BAILEY PHOTO The J. L. Crowe Hawks practiced hard this week as they get set to host their Senior Boys Basketball Tournament on Friday with teams from Rossland

JIM BAILEY PHOTO The J. L. Crowe Hawks practiced hard this week as they get set to host their Senior Boys Basketball Tournament on Friday with teams from Rossland

JL Crowe poised for tip off

Hoopsters hit the hard court at J. L. Crowe Friday for the Senior Boys Basketball Invitational tournament.

Hoopsters hit the hard court at J. L. Crowe Friday for the Senior Boys Basketball Invitational tournament.

Better known as the Cage Bowl, the annual invitational is traditionally held the Friday leading up to Christmas break.

J. L. Crowe Hawks play host to Rossland Secondary School, Mt. Sentinel School from South Slocan and Grand Forks in a six game, all-day marathon with each team playing three games apiece.

The Hawks are coming off an impressive second-place finish at a tournament in South Slocan last week, beating the host Sentinels with a final shot buzzer beater, before bowing to Christian-Heritage Secondary from Kelowna in the final. Not bad for a team that has only three returning players from last year’s squad.

“Only a third of the kids on the team are returning so it’s definitely what we consider a rebuild year,” said Hawks coach Dylan Fitzpatrick.

Still the one-time Hawk power-forward is looking for a good result on the weekend.

“I think we have what it takes to win,” added Fitzpatrick. “They are a work in progress, but they’re all in Grade 11 so it’s good.”

The team’s goal is to win the zones and a berth in the provincial championship the first week of March but have not made the trip since 2005 when Fitzpatrick played.

The Hawks first game is at 11 a.m. in the school gym against RSS.