TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
2008-09 CW Tournament placing: 3rd
2008-09 CIS Tournament placing: NA
2008-09 Overall Record: 20-10
2008-09 Conference Record: 17-6
Last CW Title: NA
Last CIS Title: NA
LANGLEY, British Columbia – Having locked down the best recruiting class in school history the expectations for this year’s Trinity Western University men’s basketball team are extremely high.
Last year, under rookie head coach Scott Allen, the Spartans had their best season in the CIS finishing third in Canada West at 20-10 with a No. 10 CIS ranking. TWU was within a game of making their first trip to the CIS championships, so when you add the strength of last year’s team to an exceptional recruiting class you have a fan base the hopes that the Spartans will make it to the CIS championships this season.
“We are deeper team this year, which should allow us to rest our key players. And our overall size will help us control the boards and eliminate second chance points for the opposing team,” commented Allen. “Playing in the Canada West will be very tough and each weekend we will need to be focused mentally, tactically and physically if we are to be successful.”
Last year the Spartans were led by CIS Player of the Year forward Jacob Doerksen (4th, Abbotsford, B.C.). This year the 6’6” forward, who averaged 20.8 points and 10.7 rebounds per game, will have plenty of help around the floor.
The new recruiting class has the Spartans suiting up two NCAA transfers: forward Tyrell Mara (White Rock, B.C.) and guard Calvin Westbrook (Courtenay, B.C.). Mara is a strong addition both on and off the court. The 6’6” forward brings three years of NCAA Div. I experience from the Portland University to the Spartans, which include two trips to the NCAA tournament. Westbook, who transfers from NCAA Div. II Stanislaus, sat out last season while attending TWU. The 6’5” guard will bring athleticism and scoring to the Spartan squad. “Tyrell will bring his leadership through his experience and his aggressive style of play,” said Allen. “Calvin will give us a scorer in every dimension of the game.”
Rounding out the top of this year’s recruiting class, with 10 new faces on the team, are redshirt first year Tonner Jackson (6’7”, guard, Surrey, B.C.), Yuba College transfer guard Niko Monachini (6’6”, Richmond, B.C.), BCCAA Player of the Year forward Clint Wickham (6’8”, Langara, Richmond, B.C.), TRU transfer guard Lucian Sauciuc (3rd, 6’3”, Coquitlam, B.C.), CBC transfer guard Elijah Nakagawa (5’8”, Surrey, B.C.) and first year Luke Braund (6’5”, forward, St. Georges, Vancouver).
Returning for the Spartans are guards Louis Hurd (5th, 5’11”, Spokane, Wash.), who averaged 13 points per game, Danny Horner (4th, 5’11” Abbotsford, B.C.), who averaged 2.2 points per game and Ryan Froese (4th, 6’4”, Winnipeg) and forward’s Jason Keegstra (4th, 6’7”, Vernon, B.C.), who averaged 6.4 points and 4.8 rebounds per game, Lance Verhoeff (4th, 6’8”, Calgary), who averaged 5.7 points and 3.4 rebounds per game and Joe Vroom (5th, 6’9”, Abbotsford, B.C.), who averaged 1.6 points and 1.4 rebounds per game.
“I expect that this team will become much stronger as we go as new players and old will take time to become one on the court,” added Allen.
On paper the Spartans have the leadership, talent and depth to compete with any team in the CIS. Only time will tell if what’s on paper transfers to the court and puts TWU in Ottawa in March.
Last Updated: 2009-10-27