Splitting the Steveston London defence, Dionycius Bakare of Vancouver's King George Dragons goes up for two of his 27 points in an 82-54 win, Jan. 21 at UBC's War Memorial Gymnasium. (Photo by Howard Tsumura property of Varsity Letters 2023. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

King George’s Dionycius Bakare: A study in humility and gravity-defying hops, Dragons’ Grade 10 star already gliding in rare air!

VANCOUVER — Maybe the best way to describe the daily development of one of the most exciting young talents in recent B.C. boys basketball history is to say that Dionycius Bakare is going through two growth spurts at the same time.By the most standard of measures, the prodigiously-talented Grade 10 guard with Vancouver’s King George […]

Surrey's Lord Tweedsmuir Panthers and Fleetwood Park Dragons both took part of the 2021 Tsumura Basketball Invitational in mid-December. High school boys and girls teams have not played in tournaments since Dec. 18 and its expected Feb. 1 return has now been pushed back indefinitely. (Photo by Howard Tsumura property of Varsity Letters 2021. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball High School Girls Basketball

A GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT TAKES ROOT: Parent-launched petition opposing continued ban on BC High school sports tournaments gaining huge on-line traction!

VANCOUVER — A grassroots petition launched on-line Friday is distinguishing itself as something of a barometre for the level of frustration being felt by those opposed to Friday’s announcement by B.C.’s Ministry of Education that high school sports tournaments in this province would not be allowed to resume play on Feb. 1.Tricia Joseph, a parent […]

High-flying Ron Putzi dunks during the Richmond Colts' 1988 title win over Seaquam at the PNE Agrodome. (Photo property of BCHSBBOA 2020. All Rights Reserved)
Feature Podcast

VL Podcast 12.17.20 edition: Richmond Colts’ Ron Putzi on milking cows and making buckets over an extraordinary hoops life!

RICHMOND — He was the leading man on a high school basketball dynasty which ushered in a new era of mainstream popularity for B.C. boys high school basketball. Former Richmond Colts star Ron Putzi stops by to join host Howard Tsumura on this week’s Varsity Letters’ podcast. Tsumura covered Putzi’s high school exploits just as […]

Thirty years ago this month, UBC's J.D. Jackson (centre) played on the same floor at B.C. Place Stadium as UNLV superstars Stacey Augmon (left) and Larry Johnson. (Photo graphic by Gabriel Lynn property of Varsity Letters 2020. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball University Men's Basketball

A Sunday Read: Why Dec. 1, 1990 – the day the UNLV Rebels came to town – was the day Vancouver came of age as a basketball city!

VANCOUVER — I can still remember the day that the late, great Jim Taylor, the newspaper sports columnist of my youth and later a co-worker at The Province newspaper, invited me over to his Vancouver home so that I might conduct an interview for a feature story I wanted to write on him for my […]

Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls visited Vancouver as an NBA city during the Grizzlies short life here, yet MJ almost paid a private visit to a B.C. high school hoops powerhouse a back in 1990. (ESPN photo graphic)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

The Last Dance, Vancouver style! Thirty years later, the story behind Michael Jordan’s planned 1990 trip to Richmond High

RICHMOND — Cell phones had not yet gone mainstream, and the internet was about a year away from its official launch.The year was 1990, although that might not seem like so long ago to some, the world was still an innocent enough outpost that picking up the phone and making one call could still get […]

St. George's senior guard Jerric Palma has learned to mesh his competitive zeal with the coaching philosophy of legendary high school bench boss Bill Disbrow. (Photo by Bob Frid property of St. George's athletics 2019. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

A Sunday read: Fiery and cerebral, St. George’s guard Jerric Palma leads with his heart under legendary head coach Bill Disbrow

VANCOUVER — His competitive nature is not only unmistakable, it’s unshakeable. It’s what develops when you start your basketball career back in the eighth grade as the proverbial runt of the provincial litter.

St. George's Jerric Palma scored a game-high 25 points Wednesday to lead Saints past Vancouver College at the Dragon's Lair. (Photo by Bob Frid property of St. George's athletics 2019. All Rights Reserved)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

St. George’s shakes off freakish free-throw funk, Palma leads No. 8 Saints past No. 3 Vancouver College Fighting Irish

VANCOUVER — The most important home game of their season almost became too big a moment for the St. George’s Saints on Wednesday night.

St. George's Saints guard Jerric Palma (right) has carried the load over his Grade 11 season and on Wednesday faces the Vancouver College Fighting Irish. (Photo courtesy Jon Hayduk/St. George's athletics)
Feature High School Boys Basketball

Jerric Palma: Tipping the scales through tenacity, St. George’s plucky guard has learned to carry his weight for the Saints

VANCOUVER — In the time reserved for preparation, those quiet pre-game moments where each player is left to his own devices, Jerric Palma finds a place where he can bring his heart and mind together in a single, perfect sphere.