Lady Gens capture 10th straight WECSSAA Championship


By Joel Charron

The General Amherst Lady Gens added to their ever-growing legacy Friday night.

Amherst captured their tenth consecutive WECSSAA championship with a dominating 56-13 win over L’Essor.

Lady Gens head coach Dom Silvaggio said he told his players to put the game away in the first minutes of the games.

They listened to their head coach, scoring the games first 11 points and built a 23-6 lead after the first frame.

Amherst kept up the attack in the second, holding L’Essor to only two point in the quarter and lead 41-8 at halftime.

“They came out to play in the first half,” said Silvaggio. “They moved the ball around, they played good defense. They really came prepared to play.”


Jaylin VandeBovenkamp dishes the ball as she drives to the basket. VandeBovenkamp saw the court for the first time this season after missing the year with a severe knee injury.

The second half saw no change as Amherst continued to pressure L’Essor.

With the game out of hand and Amherst’s tenth championship secure, L’Essor asked Silvaggio if the team would like to play an unusual six on six, in order for L’Essor to play all six of their graduating seniors in the final two minutes.

Silvaggio agreed and sub in Jaylin VandeBovenkamp, who has missed the entire season after having ACL surgery.

VandeBovenkamp scored a basket on a short layup off an in bounce pass.

“That meant everything to Jaylin,” said Silvaggio. “I was really, really hesitant to put her out there because I could see the worst thing that could have happened but she talked me into it and her dad gave her the ok.”

“She’s the only kid I know that started senior ball in Grade 9 and basically haven’t played two full seasons with us,” he continued.

Lady Gens senior Christine Belcher, who has won four championships with Amherst, said the team had to work to get the championship.

“We’ve had our issues during the season and for us to win a championship on home court and dominating the other team like we did, there is no better feeling,’ said Belcher.

Lady Gens centre, Katie Breault said this championship is special because it was a “true team championship win.”

“We don’t have a star this year. We had to work hard the whole season,” she said. “We knew if we didn’t come to play every game we would have a

General Amherst Lady Gens: 2012 WECSSAA Champions

tough season.”

Breault added this championship means more because how much time and effort the team put in.

The championship milestone was not lost of the players.

“Basketball has been a part of General Amherst for a very long time and me, along with everyone else on the team is very proud to be apart of that,” said Breault.

“I’ve been here for four championships and it just goes to show the talent that Amherst has in basketball and it shows you how good of a coach Coach Silvaggio is,” said Belcher.

Silvaggio said winning ten straight WECSSAA titles is special but he hopes the playesr take time to savor the feeling.

“This is for the kids,” he said. “This is something they are going to remember for the rest of their lives.”

Although Belcher said she is going to enjoy the championship win, she mentioned the WECSSAA title is just the first step toward their ultimate goal, and OFSSA title.

“Winning WECSSAA feels great for now but we’ll get back into the gym and work hard. We have the SWOSSAA championship on Wednesday and hopefully we can move on to our main goal which is OFSSA.”

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