The Highroad Academy Knights, the Charles Hays Rainmakers, the Duchess Park Condors and the Burnaby South Rebels are the respective top seeds for this week’s BC High School Boys Basketball Championships.
Sixty-four teams are set to compete in four tiers (1A, 2A, 3A and 4A) as the Tournament celebrates its 75th anniversary. All four tournaments will be played at Langley Events Centre with the first games tipping off Wednesday (March 4) morning and the championship finals set for Saturday (March 7) at 1:30 p.m. (1A), 3:45 p.m. (2A), 6:00 p.m. (3A) and 8:15 p.m. (4A). Altogether, 128 games will be played on five courts over the course of the four days.
Chilliwack’s Highroad Academy Knights are looking to build upon their third-place finish in 2019 as they enter as the top seed for the 2020 tournament. The Knights are in search of their first provincial title since 2002. The remainder of the top four seeds are the Kelowna Christian Knights, the Unity Christian Flames and the Barriere Cougars.
Kelowna Christian is the defending champion (and defeated Highroad Academy in the provincial semi-final last year) and has been the premier program among 1A teams with four championships, one second-place finish and another third-place finish in the past decade. The Flames (Highroad Academy’s Chilliwack rival) and Barriere are looking for their first-ever provincial titles. The Cougars came second in 1991 while the Flames were fourth in 2014.
The remaining teams (in alphabetical order) are Cedars Christian (Prince George), Deer Lake (Burnaby), Ecole Gabrielle-Roy (Surrey), Fernie, Glenlyon Norfolk (Victoria), Grand Forks, Gudangaay Tlaats’gaa Naay (Masset), Maaqtusiis (Ahousaht), McBride, Northside Christian (Vanderhoof), Similkameen (Keremeos) and St. John’s (Vancouver).
The defending champion Charles Hays Rainmakers will look to bring the 2A title back to Prince Rupert for a second straight year, entering as the top seed. The King George Dragons (Vancouver), Southridge Storm (Surrey) and Brentwood College round out the top four seeds.
The Rainmakers have three provincial titles in their history while Brentwood College captured both the 2017 and 2018 championships. King George and Southridge seek the first titles in their respective histories. King George was second in 2018 while Southridge’s best-ever finish at the 2A level was a bronze, however they did win the 3A title in 2016.
The remaining teams (in alphabetical order) are Abbotsford Christian, Clarence Fulton (Vernon), D.P. Todd (Prince George), George Elliot (Lake Country), Hugh Park (Victoria), Mulgrave (West Vancouver), Princess Margaret (Penticton), Samuel Roberts Technical (Maple Ridge), St. Thomas Aquinas (North Vancouver) and Surrey Christian.
After winning the bronze medal in 2019, Prince George’s Duchess Park Condors enter as the top seed. The Condors do have one championship under their belt, winning the 2A title in 2016. The Vernon Panthers, last year’s silver medalist, are back as the No. 2 seed, hoping to take that final step and win their first provincial title. Chilliwack’s G.W. Graham Grizzlies are the third seed and Vancouver’s Sir Charles Tupper Tigers are No. 4. The Tigers finished second in 2015 while the Grizzlies best-ever finish is a pair of bronze medals at the 2A level.
The remaining teams (in alphabetical order) are A.R. MacNeill (Richmond), John Barsby (Nanaimo), Ladysmith, Magee (Vancouver), Mark R. Isfeld (Courtenay), M.E.I. (Abbotsford), Pitt Meadows, Richmond, Steveston-London (Richmond), St. Michaels University School (Victoria), St. Patrick (Vancouver) and St. Thomas More Collegiate (Burnaby).
The Burnaby South Rebels are in search of their second title in three seasons after winning in 2018 and then finishing third in 2019. The No. 1 seed Rebels also welcomed last year’s Junior Boys Basketball Provincial Invitational Tournament champion core to the senior squad. The second seed goes to the Centennial Centaurs (Coquitlam) while the Kelowna Owls are third and the Vancouver College Fighting Irish are fourth.
The Owls lost the 2019 championship game and have arguably been the province’s most consistent program in the past five years with one title, two silvers and a bronze medal. Centennial is in search of the program’s first title since 1972 and first appearance in the championship game since 1999. The Irish (the first provincial champion in the 75-year history of the tournament) are making their record 51st appearance and look for their first title since 1967 and first medal since getting silver in 2011. The Irish (along with Oak Bay which has also qualified and Richmond, which is qualified at the 3A level) are tied with five provincial 4A titles.
The remaining teams (in alphabetical order) are Abbotsford, Claremont (Victoria), Fleetwood Park (Surrey), Frank Hurt (Surrey), Handsworth (North Vancouver), Holy Cross (Surrey), Mount Baker (Cranbrook), Oak Bay (Victoria), Prince George, Tamanawis (Surrey), Terry Fox (Port Coquitlam) and Yale (Abbotsford).