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South Cariboo coaches consider forming basketball association

Volunteers are working to make the South Cariboo Basketball Association a reality

100 Mile House is on the verge of forming its own community basketball association.

Several of Peter Skene Ogden Secondary School’s basketball coaches, including senior boys head coach Andrew Steeves and assistant coach TJ Grabowiecki, are working together to form the South Cariboo Basketball Association in partnership with Engage Sport North.

Steeves said this new association will give elementary school students and adults a chance to practice basketball year-round.

“It’s an important thing that we need for the community. I think we have made some really great steps in the last couple of years at the high school level but it’s integral for us to further develop the fundamental skills of playing basketball,” Steeves said.

Grabowiecki, who is also a sports discovery coordinator with Engage, ran two eight-week-long basketball camps for youth under 14 this year. Close to 40 children have taken part in the camps which Grabowiecki said is encouraging for the future of the association.

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“So far they seem very positive. I’ll see the kids and they’ll go ‘triple threat!’ or say ‘cookie jar!’” Grabowiecki said. “It’s cool for me because I see the kids remember me but also the skills we’ve been talking about. The passion for the game is starting to be formed in some of them.”

Forming an association will allow them to access insurance from Basketball B.C. and secure gym time easier. He had trouble running the camps because adult activity groups such as pickleball also booked time in the PSO gym. The gym is the only place in the community that can support a large-scale basketball program.

“My goal is to try and create a grassroots program so that kids coming up through the system are learning how to play the game and falling in love with it early,” Grabowiecki said. “When they come to the high school level they’ll know those fundamentals which will make it easier for the coaches and the kids.”

Steeves said the planning group will meet again in the first week of March. He said they will start to finalize their constitution and the future board of directors. Once that’s done, Steeves said they’ll start to “jump through the hoops” of setting up a non-profit organization.

Steeves hopes to begin offering programs by spring but said the fall is a more likely timeline. They’ll be offering basketball programs for different age levels, similar to minor hockey.

“I think part of what we’re trying to do with the basketball association is bridge the gap between the high school basketball season and what happens the rest of the year,” Steeves said. “What we have noticed as coaches is there are great things going on in the elementary school but we want to be able to provide a development league for all ages in the South Cariboo.

“We’re definitely looking for more people to be on the board of directors to direct where the association will go.”

Anyone looking to become involved with setting up the association is invited to contact Steeves at or Grabowiecki at respectively.

Grabowiecki said his main goal is to keep children and youth active. In addition to basketball, he is hopeful associations for sports like rugby and volleyball could be formed with Engage North’s support.

“There’s more than just hockey, baseball and soccer in this community and there are definitely kids that really enjoy alternate sports,” Grabowiecki said.

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Patrick Davies

About the Author: Patrick Davies

An avid lover of theatre, media, and the arts in all its forms, I've enjoyed building my professional reputation in 100 Mile House.
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