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Sean Garvey: The Newcomer

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Sean Garvey admits most of the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) coaches he will face in the upcoming 2005-2006 season won’t know him because he wasn’t heavily recruited out of Westsyde Secondary high school. But, by the end of this year, coaches and fans will most likely will not forget the name and the face of Sean Garvey.

The six-foot-three, 180-pound point guard plays for the Thompson Rivers University (TRU) WolfPack of Kamloops, BC. The team will move up to the CIS after competing last year in the Canadian Colleges Athletic Association (CCAA) as the University College of the Cariboo (UCC).

Garvey has a dangerous combination of size, speed, vision and basketball sense. He loves to push the ball down the court which is well suited to the up-tempo WolfPack offence. “As a point guard, I love to run; it’s my favourite part of basketball. I love to throw the ball over the top; I mean I throw more long-court passes than anybody I play against. I push. If you don’t stop me on the court, I will try to go all the way to the other hoop,” said Garvey.

With his height, there is versatility to Garvey, who can also post up and cause mismatches which leads to open shots for his team-mates. TRU Head Coach, Nevin Gleddie, believes his point guard will succeed in the CIS.
“He’s become a very good leader…He understands what I want in most situations.” Gleddie continues, “Classic Sean will, if he can’t sleep, come down to the gym at one and shoot until three in the morning, go back home and sleep. He lives for this game. I would put Sean with anybody in the country. I would expect Sean to be a part of the Canada West conference all-stars at the end of the year.” And if history is a good indicator, there is no reason to doubt the coach.

Last year, Garvey led UCC to the CCAA National Championship, adding to the bronze medal that he earned in 2004. He was named Tournament MVP and an All-Canadian for his efforts. In the regular season, Garvey’s generosity was in full display as he averaged 7.7 dimes per game to go along with his 16.6 points. Those numbers were good enough for second and seventh place in conference play. At the Winnipeg Wesmen Classic last December, he made the tournament all-star team along with CIS stars like Phil Sudol (Alberta) and Winnipeg’s Erfan Nasajpour, who was named MVP. For Garvey, last season couldn’t have been any more successful.

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“It [the CCAA Championship] was a dream come true, every year it was our goal. I had, personally, an unbelievable year. It was three years of hard work. When I first got to UCC, I wasn’t really considered a prized recruit at all and not a lot of schools had taken a look at me, a few but not a lot, and I’ve just worked super hard to get everything I got and like I said, it was a dream season. You can’t ask for anything better.”

Now Garvey and the WolfPack will move up and have a chance at claiming a CIS championship. TRU returns almost all their players from last year’s team and will be full of fourth-year players for the first time. Gleddie believes physical and mental maturity is the main difference between college teams and those in the CIS. Rarely do Canadian college rosters have more than a few fourth and fifth-year seniors.

Last season, UCC went 2-5 against CIS teams with wins against Trinity Western and Manitoba with close losses against Winnipeg and Simon Fraser. Gleddie has set his goals high for 2005-2006. “We would assume that we’re going to make playoffs and certainly we’re going to have to battle for that, I understand it’s a very tough division, but for me to set the goals any less than winning the conference and winning the Nationals, I think I’m I’d doing a disservice to my players.”

And if the rest of the team has Garvey’s competitive drive, then TRU should look forward to a lot more of winning basketball. “We’re not coming in to lose, at least I’m not. I’m coming in to win games.”

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Highly touted Alabama Crimson Tide Return To Canada

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Alabama Crimson Tide Avery Johnson Return To Canada

The Alabama Crimson Tide led by former NBA Head Coach Avery Johnson, a 16-year veteran and NBA champion point-guard during his playing days will bring his highly touted Alabama Crimson Tide to Canada for series of games against Canada’s top university basketball programs.

The Crimson Tide will visit both Montreal and Ottawa for a three-game exhibition schedule against McGill Redmen (Mon Aug 7), Carleton Ravens (Wed Aug 9) and the Ottawa Gee-Gees (Thu Aug 10).

The Tide competed hard last year and took a step in the right direction with a 19-15 record, 10-8 SEC record and have NCAA March Madness tournament aspirations thanks to solid recruiting class which ranks amongst the nations best.

Led by a talented crop of returning guards, Dazon Ingram (10.6 PPG, 4.5 RPG), Riley Norris (9 PPG, 3 RPG), the coaches son Avery Johnson Jr. and forwards Braxton Key the Tide will be a handful for the it’s Canadian opposition.

Key a 6’8″, 220 lbs flirted with the  2017 NBA draft after a stellar freshman season, the Charlotte, NC native led ‘Bama in scoring with 12 point per game and was second in rebounding at 5.7 per game. The Tide will also welcome incoming red-shirt sophomore 6’10”, 240lbs Daniel Giddens to a line-up that returns four starters.

Alabama anchored by current NBA player Alonzo Gee (Denver Nuggets) last visited Canada back in 2007 and finished with a record of 4-1 against the same exact teams, dropping a tight 83-72 decision against the Carleton Ravens who have won seven straight Canadian titles including 13-of the-last-15 championships.

Carleton’s signature win over Alabama was only their second ever against a NCAA division one team after 16-game losing streak from 1999 to 2006. The Ravens current record against NCAA teams in Canada stands at an impressive 26-23 (.531%) record.

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Calgary Dinos Thomas Cooper Senior Highlights

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Calgary Dinos Thomas Cooper Senior Highlights

Calgary Dinos senior guard Thomas Cooper had himself and impressive CIS/Usports career to say the least. The Chattanooga, Tenn. native, a 6-5, 200 lbs guard earned himself two first team All-Canadian awards while leading Dinos back to the championship game for the first time since 1966.

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No. 1 Carleton Ravens 81-40 lock-up rivals No. 2 Ottawa Gee-Gees

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Eddie Ekiyor Carleton Ravens Vs.Ottawa Gee Gees USports Basketball
Photo - Valerie Wutti

Ottawa, ON – The twelve-time defending CIS/USports National Basketball Champions and No.1 Carleton Ravens went into Monpetit Hall and completely dominated the No. 2 ranked Ottawa Gee-Gees, locking up their Bytown rivals with a blistering 81-40 win.

The Ravens, the top defensive unit in the country, allowing an incredible low of only 60 points to opponents, dominated every aspect of the much anticipated game holding Ottawa to four points in the first-quarter and thirteen in the second for a grand total of seventeen first-half points and 35-17 half-time lead.

The first-quarter ended with Ravens leading 11-4 as both teams slugged it out in front of a jam packed standing room only Monpetit Hall which hasn’t seen the Gee-Gees get dismantled like this on their home floor in 32-game OUA conference games – snapping home winning streak which dated back to 2012.

Fifth-year senior Guard Connor Wood caught fire in the second-quarter after a cold start scoring all but 14 of the teams 24 points in the quarter and finished with 16 in the half and game-high 19 points. Starting point guard Kaza Kajami-Keane added 10 points, six rebounds in just 19 minutes.

The Gee-Gees were limited to 6-of-32 (18.8%) shooting, 3-of-17 from the outside in the opening 20 minutes and managed to only connect on 12-56 (21.4%) of their field goal attempts for the entire game and only 6-of-26 from the outside.

Carleton shot 50% in the second-half and finished 31-68 from the floor and 13-of-28 from downtown while turning the ball over 9 times compared to the Gee-Gees 18.

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The 40 points allowed by the Ravens is their lowest against the Gee-Gees since a 74-34 smack-down in January 18th, 2012 at the Sixth Annual Capital Hoops Classic.

Carleton Ravens 6’10” freshman Eddie Ekiyor (Ottawa, ON) and senior forward Ryan Ejim (Toronto, ON) finished one point shy of double-doubles with 9 points and 8 rebounds respectively, and shutdown the Gee-Gees dynamic duo of Caleb Agada (12 points, 4 rebounds) and former Ravens Jean Emmanuel Pierre (7 points, 6 rebounds). Gee-Gees Guard Brandon Robinson had a team-high 15 points on 4-of-8 shooting, 3-of-4 triples.

Carleton’s record  stays unblemished at a perfect 10-0, 16-0 against Canadian competition and 22-2 overall with the only losses coming from two NCAA opponents on the road in Rhode Island – Providence Friars 87-69 and in Philadelphia against LaSalle Explorers 79-73.

Both teams will meet again in just over two weeks (Feb 3rd) at the 2017 Capital Hoops Classic at the ScotiaBank Centre.

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