The University of Victoria Vikes have scheduled a Tribute to the Life of Eli Pasquale for Saturday, Nov. 16 at the McKinnon Gymnasium. Doors will open for this public event at 2 p.m.
Pasquale passed away Monday. He was 59.
Pasquale was one of the greatest basketball players this country ever produced.
The Sudbury, Ont., product was the driving force behind the Vikes dynastic run in the 80s. Starting his freshmen year, he led the Vikes to five consecutive national championships from 1979-84. He is one of five CIS/CIAU athletes to have won five national titles in any sport.
In 1982 Pasquale was recognized as the B.C. University Athlete of the Year and in 1983 led Canada to a gold medal finish at the World University Games over USA, a team boasting future NBA stars Karl Malone and Charles Barkley.
In 1984, he was awarded the Mike Moser Memorial Trophy as Canadian university basketball’s Player of the Year and after graduating from UVic was a draft pick of the NBA’s Seattle Supersonics. He played three pre-season games for the team before being released. He later played pro basketball in Argentina, West Germany and Switzerland.
The point guard also enjoyed a distinguished international career, spending 15 seasons with the Canadian national team program and competed in two Olympic Games, two PanAm Games and four World Championships.
In 2003, Pasquale was inducted into the Canadian Basketball Hall of Fame and in 2004 inducted into the B.C.’s Hall of Fame. The following year his jersey was retired by the Vikes.
Pasquale is survived by wife Karen, sons Isiah and Manny, brother Vito, sister Luciana and mother Adriana.