OSBA Pre-Season Preview: King’s Christian Collegiate
King’s Christian Collegiate in Oakville is looking to have a breakout season in 2017. Last year, the team finished at the bottom of the Ontario Scholastic Basketball Association (OSBA) with a record of 1-19. Despite the poor record, the team’s future looks promising as they were one of the youngest teams in the league. “The core of our team was in grade 10 last season. With another year of maturity and development, we are looking to improve on last year's performance,” said Eric Bulthuis, King’s Christian Athletic Director.
King’s Christian added height this off-season as Johnny Vrdoljak (6’10 C, Georgetown) committed to the team from Christ the King. Vrdoljak is a big man who fills a need in the post, as King’s Christian only had one Centre on its roster last season. As a class of 2020 player, Vrdoljak is another addition to a core of grade 11 players on the roster.
With only one graduating player in Jayden Grewal (6’2 PG), who will be playing for the University of Waterloo, King’s Christian’s young core will all be returning next season. The most notable returning players include Luka Sakota (6’4 PG, Etobicoke) and Alexander Nwagha (6’7 F, Toronto), who were both members of the U16 Canadian Men’s National Team this past summer. (https://www.basketball.on.ca/site/index.cfm?DSP=Section&ID=101&ACT=Display&NewsID=2991) Another notable returning player is Coleman Stucke (6’6 SF, Burlington). “Coleman led our team in scoring last year. He brings an offensive game that is difficult to stop. He brings leadership and outstanding basketball IQ,” commented Bulthuis.
Sam Thomson (6’9 PF, Halton Hills) is another key player returning to the team. Thompson was one of ten Ontario athletes invited to the U16 Men’s National Team training camp this summer. (https://www.basketball.on.ca/site/index.cfm?DSP=Section&ID=101&ACT=Display&NewsID=2986) Thomson, along with Vrdoljak and Nwagha, create a positive future for King’s Christian in the post.
“The OSBA gives players an elite level of play every game. Each team is loaded with top players that allow for practices and games to be competitive, which in turn allows for outstanding development,” said Bulthuis.
Development will be the key theme around King’s Christian this season. The growth in experience and skill of its players over last season and this past summer will be tested this year as they look to improve on their previous record and have a breakout season.