The Bow Valley Bobcats senior boys varsity team was just a few baskets short of claiming their first-ever divisional championship on Mar. 4.

The Chestermere Lakers claimed the banner 74-66 on home turf in a game that went down to the wire.

"Everything that could have gone wrong went wrong," says Bobcats head coach Kris Nielson. "Injury, foul troubles, you name it."

"Still, it was a close game. We were just on the wrong side of the final score."

On Mar. 2, the Bobcats advanced by defeating the cross-town Cochrane Cobras in front of a fired-up crowd of fans from both schools.

It was the W. H. Croxford Cavaliers of Airdrie that won both the divisional varsity girls and junior boys banners. The Springbank Phoenix claimed the junior girls title.

Now both Cochrane high school senior boys varsity teams are heading into what's considered one of the hottest contested zone championships in Alberta. It features three of the top 10 ranked 3A basketball teams in the province--Strathmore High, Brooks Composite, and Bow Valley High--and two honourable mentions--Cochrane High and Canmore Collegiate.

It's also a tight contest in the senior varsity girls division, and again the south-central zone has some highly competitive teams. Strathmore is ranked number one in the province, Cochrane High is fourth, and Bow Valley High received an honorable mention.

Senior Varsity zone playoffs kick off in Cochrane tonight. The Cochrane Cobras boys and girls teams are at home against Canmore. The Bobcats boys host GMAC and the varsity girls host Brooks Composite.

Junior varsity basketball zone championships get underway on Friday. Cochrane High is hosting the junior girls, and the junior boys are off to Canmore.