SURREY — Taylor Browne is glad to be playing for a national championship so close to home.
The Holy Cross grad is in his rookie season as a sharp-shooting guard with the UBC Thunderbirds as the team prepares to host the CIS basketball championships.
The Final Eight tourney starts Thursday (March 17) at the Doug Mitchell Sports Centre at the Vancouver campus.
As always this season, Browne will drive to UBC from his Johnston Heights-area home.
“It’s great to be home for (the finals),” the enthusiastic Browne told the Now. “It’s a great stress-reliever having it here.”
Last week, Browne was named to the Canada West All-Rookie Team, mostly for being a consistent scoring threat off the bench. He averaged 4.7 points-per-contest in just 12.7 minutes-per-game, and proved a threat from distance.
“It’s been a good year, a huge change from high school,” Browne said. “The intensity is way higher, and strength, but I think I’ve adapted well. I kind of stay focused on my shooting ability, because that’s kind of my role right now. I’ve been working hard and trying to provide the best minutes I can whenever I’m on the floor.”
As Canada West bronze medalists, the eighth-seed Thunderbirds will face Ryerson, the top seed, in their opening game, at 8 p.m. Thursday.
The Canadian men’s basketball championship is being held at UBC for the first time since 1972, when the Thunderbirds won the national title.
“I have a lot of family asking me about tickets to the games,” Browne said with a laugh, “and I just tell them to go online, and a lot of them do. It’s nice to have the section of kind of like my family. They’re always there, so it’s great.”
Click here to see Browne’s stats this year.