It will be hard to top the 2015-16 season for the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack but head coach Scott Clark and his crew will be up to the task.
Last season saw the WolfPack win their first ever Canada West divisional title. They then won a playoff series with the University of Regina Cougars in three games.
That victory allowed them a berth in the Canada West final four for the first time. The WolfPack downed the UBC Thunderbirds in the semi finals. Because UBC was the host team for the CIS FInal 8, the win secured Thompson RIvers their first ever berth in Canadian Basketball's 'Big Dance."
With a big contingent of orange clad WolfPack fans in the stands, TRU gave the defending national champion Carleton Ravens their toughest test of the event before falling short.
The appearance in the national championship was another step in the upward evolution of the men's basketball program at Thompson Rivers. A program which has improved every year under Clark, who was hired on May 20, 2010.
The WolfPack had three players: Josh Wolfram (Kamloops, BC), Reese Pribilsky (Victoria, BC) and Volodomyr Iegorov (Donetsk, Ukraine) named to Canada West all-star teams. Wolfram was also a CIS all-star and named the Basketball BC University male basketball player of the year for 2015-16.
Only Iegorov remains and becomes the leader of the Pack. He is the team’s lone fifth year player.
Clark preaches ‘team ahead of individual’ success and will rely upon that this season. Returning players who will play more of a key role include Luke Morris (Mission, BC) and Jeff Tubbs (Kelowna, BC). Tubbs was named to the Canada West “all rookie’ team.
Adding to the depth on the WolfPack is Joe Davis (Kamloops, BC). He took a year off from school but returns for his second year of eligibility.
Players vying for increased court time will be fellow sophomores: Mike Rouault (Vernon, BC), Evan Helgason and Evan Cave (both Kamloops, BC) and Kyler Eckess (Prince Rupert, BC).
Clark has a strong recruiting class with many of them BC High School all-stars: Ryan Miller (6’6” forward, Kamloops, BC-Valleyview Secondary), Trent Monkman (6’2”, guard, Smithers, BC-Smithers Secondary/Northwest Jr. Timberwolves), Noah Kaefer (6’4”, forward, Courtenay, BC-Mark R. Isefeld Secondary), Madhu McConnell (6’0” guard, Victoria, BC-Oak Bay Secondary), Jass Singh (6’0” guard, Abbotsford, BC-WJ Mouat Secondary-Team BC), and Jordan Komarniski (6’0”, guard, Kamloops, BC-South Kamloops Secondary)