28 teams from around Western Canada will compete in the 17th annual Mike Dea Classic this week, November 27-29.
This tournament is named after Mike Dea, a former teacher and coach at St Francis Xavier for 35 years.
“He is a great man, a legend in our school; him and his wife have attended all 17 years and they watch almost every game. They are great people who love sports,” said tournament convenor and current St FX coach Jeremy Posteraro.
British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and of course, Alberta will have representation.
I have been to both Edmonton and Calgary in the past (National championships, showcase camps), but this will be my first Alberta high school tournament that I’ll be taking in. Looking forward to discovering all the hidden gems in the West!
The host team St Francis Xavier is expected to be a contender for the tournament title, along with Ross Sheppard, St Francis (Calgary) and Archbishop O’Leary.
St FX team lead Nelson Wani, who was battling last season with some injuries is looking forward to tip of his senior year.
“I’m excited that im healthy and that I’m with a group of guys that are ready to go. We’re hosting, so we’ll have our peers, family and friends to support at home,” Wani told North Pole Hoops.
Coach Posteraro is confident in this year’s team and believe they will compete.
“We’re hoping to win this tournament…it’s not going to b easy but we’ll take it one game a time,” he said.
“Hopefully with the home crowd, we can take care of business.”
The out of province teams–Luther (Sask), Prince George (BC), Sturgeon Heights (Manitoba)–enter the tournament as unknowns looking to make their mark.
Lloyd Minister, Bev Facey, Western, Leduc, Bishop McNally, Bert Church, Bellrose, Winston Churchill & CCHS round out the in-province teams participating.
I look forward to learning about the HS basketball scene within the province–prospects, teams and the community as a whole.
Last year, O’Leary defeated Leboldus in the championships game, “Chan De Ciman was ridiculous in that game,” said Posteraro, referring to a true gem PG out of Saskatchewan, younger brother of Colorado State’s Joe De Ciman.
Already containing the Western flavour, Posteraro supports the idea of inviting teams from across the country, including teams from Ontario.
“It creates a competitiveness and brings together more resources, more media attention and it’s good for the game. Canada is one country,” and a united basketball nation, is a healthy one.
Off the Court
- West Edmonton mall is a must see for me. In my last trip to Edmonton for nationals this past summer, I missed the opportunity to check out North America’s largest mall. I won’t make the same mistake twice.
- I’m like an unofficial Shawarma critic. In every city I’m in, I try to taste the best of the best. Donair King in Vancouver, British Columbia held the #1 spot in the National Shawarma rankings, until I recently tasted Golden Dough in (Mississauga). There could be some hometown bias, but I challenge anyone reading to check them out, and see for themselves!
- Word is, there are two spots I need to check in Edmonton: Swiss Donair and Queen Donair. That shouldnt be too difficult.
Special thanks to St Francis Xavier for hosting @ at the 17th Annual #MikeDeaClassic