It will be a border battle as the Eastside Catholic Crusaders head north to face the Semiahmoo Thunderbirds as the two teams square off in a boys’ basketball exhibition game at Langley Events Centre.
The game will be played on Friday, Dec. 9 on Centre Court at LEC with a 7:30 p.m. start time.
The Thunderbirds opened the 2022/23 high school season ranked No. 1 in the pre-season polls among the 4A schools.
Last March, the team were the finalists at the 2022 BC School Sports 4A Boys Basketball Provincial Tournament.
And the Thunderbirds return most of that roster, including Torian Lee and Cole Bekkering.
As Grade 10s last season, the pair were both named First Team All-Stars.
Eastside Catholic – located in the Seattle suburb of Sammamish, Wash. – plays in the Metro League and advanced to the 3A Boys State Basketball championships in 2022.
Seeded 14th among the 20 schools at the State Championships, the Crusaders won a pair of elimination games – including knocking out the No. 3 seed – to make the final eight.
The Crusaders are a relatively young team, with just three seniors, six juniors, a pair of sophomores and a pair of freshmen on their Varsity roster.
The players’ average height is just below 6-foot-3.
One of the team’s most highly-sought after players is junior Jacob Cofie, a 6-foot-10 power forward.
Cofie – who graduates in 2024 – has already received scholarship offers from Colorado, Montana, Ohio State, UNLV, Washington and Washington State.
“We know Eastside Catholic is a very talented team, but we need to focus on our game and improving against a quality opponent,” said Semiahmoo head coach Les Brown.
“The goal is to always schedule challenging games to see how the group responds. And opponents like the Crusaders tend to highlight what you need to focus on to be stronger and better as a group.”
“This should be a lot of fun and the team will be pretty amped up for this challenge.”
Tickets are on sale now at www.showpass.com/eastside-catholic-crusaders-vs-semiahmoo-thunderbirds/
Cost will be $12 for adults, $8 for students/youth and free for those ages five and under.
Limited court-side seats are also available for $20.
For those unable to attend the game, it can also be live-streamed at tfsetv.ca for $6 US.