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Blesssed Sacrament JUEL



The Blessed Sacrament Yellow Jackets have turned some heads early on in the JUEL season. Up against many odds including fielding one of the smaller lineups in the league, the Yellow Jackets are still finding a way to stay very competitive.

“I’m very happy so far. We young and we’re small. But they’re playing very well as a team, moving the ball and running the court well”, said Blessed Sacrament Head Coach, Tally Tatti. “We’re making a lot of mistakes that hopefully we can correct, but we’re competing. We’re showing that we belong and that size isn’t everything.”

At this point, having only one player 6’0” tall (excluding sidelined Caroline Hummel who hasn’t played in JUEL so far), the Yellow Jackets have been forced to step up in other areas to compensate. What his team lacks in the size department, early on Tatti has been able to find ways for his team to make up for in shooting ability and speed.

“We shoot well. It doesn’t mater who’s open; they all have the green light. When they’re set, and they’re open, they shoot. I think that’s helping us out quite a bit early. The way we move the ball, get that open shot, and then they have to guard you a little tighter, and then we use our speed and skill to get around them. We’re trying to hone in on the skills and the speed of the game to compensate.”

Tatti went on to say “We will be out rebounded every game and that’s a fact. We have to find a way to compete with that fact.”

Blessed Sacrament has chosen to compete with that fact by always looking for the outlet pass and looking to head man the ball. It makes for an exciting brand of basketball. It is a fast paced run and gun type of game that gives the team many fast break opportunities.

Being ready to shoot, drive and kick, and finding openings is how this team has been able to get things done so far.

A lot of the team’s current size resides in Lauren Jamieson. Although Jamieson has the relatively slender build of a typical Wing and gives up some weight and strength when guarding the Post position, Jamieson has shown that she can be creative in the Post, despite playing the majority of the high school season at the Wing position. Having the luxury of bringing bigger defenders out to the perimeter in games plays right into her strengths and helps to open up lanes for her teammates.

“She’s quick and she’s aggressive”, Tatti said of Jamieson who attends Holy Trinity on Oakville. “Using her quickness and length, if she can get the first stop, our Guards are taught to swarm. Don’t let [the opponent] have the time for a second move. I think she’s done a terrific job. She’s coming into a new philosophy. She’s one of the new girls that we didn’t have last year and I am very pleased with her progress.”

Progressing quite well is Naomi Ashley who is in her second year with the team. Tatti says that now that Ashley believes in herself and in the system that they play, that she her game will continue to grow by leaps and bounds.

Her game is evolving from one where she played in lower level divisions, where she was able to use her ultra high athleticism to drive around the other players. In using her strengths, a niche is being carved out that she is esteeming to a blossoming game.

“I’ve seen a big improvement in her than when we first started with her. She believes in our system and believes in herself and I think is just going to be a force to be reckoned with.

“With her jumping ability and her aggressiveness, surprisingly enough, I could see her being our leading rebounder. She’s just tough as nails, can jump and has good anticipation.”

Bringing that leaping ability to the court is only a natural progression for Ashley, who was only .02 seconds off of tying an OFSAA (Ontario high school Championship) Track and Field record last Spring in the 80M Hurdles.

Running the Point for the team is 5’5” Guard, Melissa Tatti.  Although possessing a petite body structure, she is a scrappy player.  Among the athleticism and skills that she brings to her team, it’s the intangibles that this Coach’s daughter brings, that really impact her fellow Yellow Jackets.


“She always been out heart and soul, and I never worry about her effort.  I’m told that she sees the court as well as anybody.  She loves being a teammate and her teammates know that she’s going to get the ball to them and in a position to score.  And that make the whole team better.”


Despite the limitations to her size, Tatti plays tough.   Playing almost with a chip on her shoulder as if to prove to the naysayers that discounted her size, that not only can she complete, but also can excel.  She employs several ways to score, whether from a range that extends far past the 3-point line, or using great speed and creativity to get to the basket, which makes defenders having to be aware of her presence at all times.

“Distributing the ball to her is more important that shooting, but she’s got a natural shot too. And if the open 3 is there, she’s going to pop them all day long no matter where they are.”

Later on this year, some of the size challenges that this Blessed Sacrament JUEL team is facing will look to be remedied with the return of Caroline Hummel.  She will bring to them a Post presence that has strength and that will help tip the scales more in their favor with activity in the pain on both ends of the floor.

“Caroline has had a health problem that is non-basketball related.  She has been told no contact sports for 6 months.  She’s now focused on her schooling where she has a 94% average, which is unbelievable.”

Tatti went on to say about Hummel, “Maybe even a bit of a break is good for her body at this point.  She’s a physical player and take a lot of abuse.  Her mindset is fantastic.  I’m sure her physical skills will come back very quickly.”