The Brandon University Healthy Living Centre will play host to an exciting series of basketball games between Manitoba and Saskatchewan's provincial teams. The "Prairie Challenge" is slated for July 4 at the BU HLC with games between the province's best 15U, 16U and 17U players.
A total of 12 games will be played as part of a series of exhibition contests in preparation for the Canada Basketball National Championships in Halifax (15U and 17U), Edmonton (15U and 17U female), and the Western Canada Summer Games in Fort McMurray, Alta (16U male and female).
This event marks the first time Basketball Manitoba and Basketball Saskatchewan will send their best to play a series of exhibition games in Brandon.
"This is a great opportunity for us to welcome and host some of the top basketball players in Manitoba and Saskatchewan," says Bobcats coach Novell Thomas.
"I'm very excited to see each provinces best players in our very own Healthy Living Centre. There will be many visitors in attendance that have never been to our facility before, so it's great exposure for Brandon University and Brandon University Athletics. It's also a great opportunity for basketball fans in our area to watch some of the best young athletes from Manitoba and Saskatchewan."
Here's the complete list of games to be played at the HLC on July 4:
- 11 AM - Game 1 - SK vs MB - 15UM – HLC North Court (58-53 Manitoba)
- 11 AM - Game 2 - SK vs MB - 15UF - HLC South Court (52-40 Manitoba)
- 12:45 PM - Game 3 - SK vs MB - 16UM - HLC North Court (71-57 Manitoba)
- 12:45 PM - Game 4 - SK vs MB - 16UF - HLC South Court (Saskatchewan 72-67)
- 2:30 PM - Game 5 - SK vs MB - 17UM - HLC North Court (Manitoba 84-65)
- 2:30 PM - Game 6 - SK vs MB - 17UF - HLC South Court (Manitoba 53-49)
- 4:15 PM - Game 7 - SK vs MB - 15UM - HLC North Court (Saskatchewan 66-48)
- 4:15 PM - Game 8 - SK vs MB - 15UF - HLC South Court (Saskatchewan 29-27)
- 6 PM - Game 9 - SK vs MB - 16UM - HLC North Court (Saskatchewan 54-33)
- 6 PM - Game 10 - SK vs MB - 16UF - HLC South Court (Saskatchewan 56-41)
- 7:45 PM - Game 11 - SK vs MB - 17UM - HLC North Court (Manitoba 66-56)
- 7:45 PM - Game 12 - SK vs MB - 17UF - HLC South Court (Saskatchewan 55-50)
Admission to all games is just $3 dollars for the entire day, while kids aged 13 and under get in free.
Team Manitoba is coming off its best summer ever with two gold medals, a silver medal, and a bronze medal last year. Team Saskatchewan's U15 girls won gold at the Canada Basketball National Championship in July of 2014. Former Bobcat Tracey MacLeod (now Johnson) is the head coach of Team Saskatchewan's U16 girls team.