Resilient through all his hurdles, prodigious Trinity Western guard Ja'Qualyn Gilbreath is gearing up for his U SPORTS finale in 2021-22. (Photo by Scott Stewart property of Trinity Western athletics 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Men's Basketball

‘Q’ the comeback! As TWU preps for Shoot for the Cure fundraiser, Spartans’ coach Pridie can’t hide pride for resilient superstar guard Ja’Qualyn Gilbreath!

LANGLEY — One year later, it’s time to cue the comeback… or should that be ‘Q’ the comeback?Fans of the men’s basketball team at Trinity Western University are clearly hoping so.On Thursday, the Spartans faithful as well as Canada West hoops afficionados will have their first opportunity since the early days of 2020 to watch […]

The historic original basketball court at North Delta Secondary School lives on in the lives of those it has touched. (Photo graphic by Gabriel Lynn property of Varsity Letters 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

May the circle be unbroken: How North Delta’s original 1957 basketball court was rescued & re-purposed as a unifying symbol for Huskies old and new!

NORTH DELTA — Basketball’s centre-court circle.Within the dimensions of the sport’s time-honoured schematic, it’s always been the place where the narrative begins… that perfectly circular gathering point measuring a regulation 12 feet in diametre which never fails to welcome its two combatants to Act 1, Scene 1.And just like theatre’s most well-trodden stages, the passing […]

UBC Thunderbirds head coach Blake Nill feels so much of the team's 2021 identity will stem from the team's play along its trenches. (Photo by Howard Tsumura property of VarsityLetters.ca 2020. All Rights Reserved)
Feature Podcast

VL podast 01.27.21: UBC head football coach Blake Nill on celebrating the tradition of Blue & Gold and the promise of a 2021 fall kick-off!

The UBC football nation, just like all of the other tight-knit, tradition-laden programs across Canada, mourned the loss of 2020 university football season. Thunderbirds’ head coach Blake Nill, however, is excited and hopeful for the prospects of a 2021 campaign… that much is obvious as the three-time Vanier Cup national championship-winning coach joins host Howard […]

Fingers are crossed that high school basketball can make its comeback for the 2021-22 season, and with that, the return of the TBI at the LEC. (Photo by Howard Tsumura property of Varsity Letters 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball High School Girls Basketball

Tsumura Basketball Invitational: Optimism rules as we set tentative Dec. 2021 dates for an LEC return! Here’s our list of 40 boys and girls teams!

LANGLEY — Hope springs eternal here with all of us behind the scenes at the Tsumura Basketball Invitational.While our annual two weeks of early-season ‘Welcome Back’ to the B.C. senior boys and girls basketball world was, of course, cancelled this past December due to the global pandemic, we here at the TBI have our fingers […]

A cancelled 2020-21 U SPORTS season will wind up being the final one for UBC's Gabrielle Laguerta. (Photo by Richard Lam property of UBC athletics 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Girls Basketball University Women's Basketball

UBC’s Gabrielle Laguerta: Despite her battle scars and lost senior season, ‘Birds senior celebrates the silver lining of basketball’s shared experience

VANCOUVER —As Gabrielle Laguerta has gone about playing her role in the strangest year of our lives, UBC’s fifth-year senior guard has so often felt like an actor rehearsing her lines for a Broadway production she knows  will never see the light of opening night.“I’ll come off a good practice where I’ve tried out this […]

SFU head coach Mike Rigell has listened and learned at every stop along his coaching journey. (Photo by Paul Yates property of Vancouver Sports Pictures 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Football

VL Podcast 01.20.21: Simon Fraser head coach Mike Rigell on his football journey from BYU to the sidelines of Terry Fox Field!

LANGLEY — From a college football career at Brigham Young University to an NFL coaching internship under Andy Reid and Eric Bieniemy with the Kansas City Chiefs, Mike Rigell has travelled a long and winding road on his journey to becoming the head coach of Simon Fraser University football. Today, Coach Rigell joins the Varsity […]

Ty Rowell (left) of the Cal Baptist Lancers, and Fardaws Aimaq of the Utah Valley Wolverines, each had spectacular efforts to lead their respective teams to victories in NCAA Div. 1 Western Athletic Conference games played stateside on Friday. (Photos property of Cal Baptist Athletics and Utah Valley University Marketing 2020. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

Rowell and Aimaq! B.C.’s one-two punch of ‘Ty and Daws’ each play starring roles Friday in the WAC as Cal Baptist, Utah Valley both get big W’s!

It was a Friday night in which B.C.’s best Div. 1 men’s basketball talent took a backseat to no one in the NCAA’s Western Athletic Conference.Point guard Ty Rowell keyed a game-changing 16-3 second-half run with nine of his 17 points, the Langley-Walnut Grove grad never leaving the floor on a night in which he […]

Simon Fraser men's soccer coach Clint Schneider looks hopefully to the future, but hasn't lost sight of the lessons his team has learned over the challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic and a cancelled GNAC season. (Photo by Paul Yates property of Simon Fraser athletics 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature University Men's Soccer

“I have hope” says coach Clint Schneider: Each socially-distanced step an important part of Simon Fraser soccer’s journey to a hopeful 2021 season!

BURNABY — Will B.C. university sports in 2020-21 go down in history as the lost season?Or will the passing of time perhaps confirm a radically different conclusion, more akin to the season which taught all concerned a level of lessons more impactful than any could have imagined?Spend a few moments chatting with Simon Fraser University […]

Chris Kennedy, a 1991 McNair Secondary grad, has coached basketball in B.C. since the 1987-88 season. The Superintendent of Schools for West Vancouver most recently guided Richmond's R.A. McMath Wildcats senior girls team. (Photo by Howard Tsumura property of VarsityLetters.ca 2020. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball High School Girls Basketball

VL Podcast 01.13.21: Author, author! Chris Kennedy takes his ‘Culture of Yes’ into its second decade with a message more relevant than ever

LANGLEY — Happy New Year. Our first podcast of 2021 features Chris Kennedy, Superintendent of Schools for West Vancouver, and a lifelong B.C. high school basketball coach. Kennedy’s popular blog Culture of Yes is now in its 11th year, and today the Richmond native stops by to engage our provincial audience with everything that the […]

Sands Scorpions head coach Matt McKay (crouching) isn't able to coach up his teamm during timeout this season, but the North Delta-based bench boss is hosting a series of online basketball clinics featuring coaches from all over North America. (Photo by Paul Yates property of Vancouver Sports Pictures 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball University Men's Basketball

It’s a continental hoops cuisine! Matt McKay’s virtual Sands Basketball Clinics unite B.C. & North American coaches in the name of the game!

NORTH DELTA — They say that silence is deafening, and in perhaps the cruelest of ways, that was the auditory state most common among both high school basketball players and their coaches as each began 2021 by walking into gymnasiums normally teeming with the activity of a season in progress.“We all realized that last Wednesday […]