Kamloops —The most successful of the Thompson Rivers University WolfPack Canada West court teams in the first half of the 2015-16 Canada West season has been men’s basketball.
Coach Scott Clark has his team sitting atop of the Explorer Division with a 7-1 record. This follows a sweep of the University of Fraser Valley Cascades and an exhibition campaign where the squad went unbeaten.
Clark is the first to tell you, the season is far from over. “You sit back for a second and celebrate the small successes that you’ve had. But if you do it too often then someone is going to kick you in the butt. The team that is going to be there in the end is the one that continues to get better. We celebrated where we were last week. This week, it is back to practice and are attempting improve. It is hoped that the success we have enjoyed so far will fuel the players to want even more in the future.”
Modesty aside, the WolfPack have a lot to be proud of. They have the best record of any team in the Canada West. They have been ranked twice in the top 10 CIS rankings for the first time in school history.
“There is an old saying that it is harder to handle with success than failure,” Clark states. “That is the challenge for the guys. They have had a bit of success. Now how are they going to handle it.”
Statistically, Thompson Rivers possesses the third and fourth most potent scorers in the Canada West in Volodymyr Iegorov (4th year, forward, Dontesk, Ukraine) and Josh Wolfram (5th year, forward, Kamloops, BC). Iegorov is averaging 22.1 points per game. Wolfram is 21.3. He is also second in the Canada West in rebounds per game (11) and ninth in blocks (1.1)
Iegorov is third best in three point per cent (48.6) while teammate Albert Medrano (3rd year, guard, Los Altos, CA) is fourth (47.8).
Reese Pribilsky (5th year, guard, Victoria, BC) leads the league in assists per game (5.6) and is third in steals (3.4 per game).
When he set out his plan for the season, Clark admits that the team is where he thought they would be at this point. “We actually have two peaks to the season,” he says. “We tried to peak the last week of November before the break. Then we have a five week break before starting our ‘second season’. We will start building for that with the idea of peaking in February or March.”
The WolfPack play half of their remaining 12 Canada West league games on the road starting January 8th in Kelowna against the University of British Columbia Okanagan Heat. TRU has four games away from the Tournament Capital Centre before returning home to entertain the Mount Royal University Cougars on Friday, January 22nd on the Warner Rentals Court. Tip-off is 8 pm.
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