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Program introduced for top North Shore basketball players
Many of West Vancouver School District’s top basketball players will begin working with high-level coaches at a new training centre next school year.
The Basketball BC High School Performance Training Centre based out of West Van secondary is open to students entering Grades 10 to 12 from all districts on the North Shore.
Students in the program, which includes on-court training, basketball fitness and theory components, will receive physical education credit at their grade level and remain eligible to play for their home school.
“The idea is to get the strongest kids at schools across the North Shore training together with coaches that are at the top level in our province, while still maintaining their eligibility at their home school,” said Garth Thomson, West Van secondary’s Basketball Academy program director.
Boys’ coaching will be led by Greg Meldrum, a former National Team member and current Ridgeview teacher, while Shaun McGuinness, 2013 Basketball BC U17 female Canada Games silver medalist and UBC’s women’s assistant coach, will be leading the girls.
Last year, the West Van school district launched a basketball academy for talented students in Grades 9 to 11. The Premier Basketball Academy runs in the morning outside of the normal basketball season from November to March.
Rather than playing on teams, the athletes worked on different aspects of their game with high-calibre coaches, including Meldrum, who is responsible for the boys team in the new program.
The new Basketball BC High School Performance Training Centre will be held during class time and equivalent PE credits will be awarded to the students.
The program is open to students in North and West Vancouver, as well as Vancouver and Sea-to-Sky school districts. Ideally, around 20 boys and 20 girls will take part, said Thomson.
“We’re targeting kids with post-secondary aspiration. A small percentage of kids in British Columbia that play high school basketball, play post secondary but if we can get these kids together they will improve each other,” he added.
Tryouts take place on April 8 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. The program costs $1,400 per year.
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