South Delta Basketball Association's U13 boys Metro program has concluded its best season ever, finishing second at the recent Steve Nash Youth Challenge.
In its 14-year history, playing in the "A" division was a distant memory for the tiny association. Clubs such as Tri-Cities and Burnaby have over 200 players registered at the U13 level, while South Delta had 52 this year. Still a dedicated group of players, blessed with plenty of height, resulted in tremendous success.
The Magic featured the most size in the nine-team "A" Division with Duncan Ross, Jas Singh and Jacob Cowley all hovering around 6-feet. With experienced guards Tyler Jones, Conor Edgson and Ryan Alexander, the locals were well-balanced.
According to coach Tim Cowley, what really made a difference was the development of key guards Jared Ferreira and Dylan Bubel who elevated their game to become key contributors by season's end. Having lost spark plug Kyle Rich to a mid-season broken foot, Grade 6 point guard Jake Willemsen was called up from the house league and became an impact player.
The boys grew as a team and developed tremendous chemistry en route to a respectable fourth place finish in league play. After a hard fought four point quarter-final loss to North Langley, all that was left was the season-ending Steve Nash Challenge that featured teams from around the province.
Four of the nine Magic players attended week long camps at the DRIVE Academy in Richmond which provided a perfect springboard headed into the tournament.
South Delta easily dispatched Tri-Cities in its opening game, led by the rebouding of Terrell Kinch. An unbeaten run in round-robin play earned a rematch with North Langley in the semi-finals and the Magic was determined to produce a different result. Led by Jake Cowley and Singh, the locals built an early eight point lead and went on to produce a huge 46-43 win.
The final was against the Burnaby Ballaholics who the Magic had edged 4140 in round-robin play. This time it was Burnaby getting revenge, breaking open a tight game to win by 15 points.
"The future is bright, very bright, for basketball in South Delta," said Tim Cowley, who also serves as SDBA president. "With SDSS and DSS programs building momentum this season and with this crop entering high school in the fall, we can expect some very competitive teams for years to come."
The association will be expanding its registration to include North Delta kids this fall but South Delta residents will still have the first opportunity to sign up. There will be divisions for both boys and girls from Grades 2-12 with the season running from September to March. For more information visit www.southdeltabasketball.org.