The CMU Men's Basketball program has annoiunced the commitment of Lance Catipon for the 2023-24 MCAC and NIAC seasons.  Daniel McIntyre's top producer will bring an ability to score down low and from the outside to the Blazers this year along with plenty of experience playing against top club talent.

A consistent top scorer on his high school DMCI Maroons squad, Catipon captained his Daniel McIntyre team to an MHSAA "AAAA" Provincial Championships berth as a wildcard entry by defeating the Kildonan East Reivers to earn their spot at the tournament this past spring. There they upset a higher-seeded Maples Collegiate squad to make it to the quarter-final round where they faced the top ranked team in Manitoba and eventual finalists Sturgeon Heights Huskies, and gave them a much closer game than anyone would have expected, eventually falling 85-70.  The team also made appearances at the Winnipeg Invitational Tournament, the Spartan Classic, and their home DMCI Invitational where they made it to the semi finals.  Catipon received WWAC All-Star recognition as well as being named to the "AAAA" All-Star Graduating class.

Earlier in his school basketball career Catipon was a standout at Sargent Park School, helping junior high team to a Provincial Championships title during the COVID-shortened 2019-20 season after the team won the Centurion Classic Basketball Tournament in Edmonton, where he was named tournament MVP.  Catipon was named Sargent Park School Athlete of the Year for three consecutive years covering his grades seven, eight, and nine seasons.

At 6'2" Catipon uses his speed and athleticism to outwork much bigger players on the boards, where he routinely finds himself slotting in at power forward or even centre.  Currently training with Refresh Select, where he plays alongside Blazers men's basketball's first signing of the off-season, Derian Castaneda, Catipon has factored in on a number of Manitoba club lineups, including being selected to represent both Manitoba and Canada at the NBTC Global Championship in Manila Philippines this past March.  There he played alongside current CMU guard Marco Guaring and had strong performances averaging 13.3 points per game against some of the top young Filipino talent from across the globe.  Here at home he has taken home a championship win in the PBA of Winnipeg league with NBTC, and took home finalist MVP honours with Refresh in the 17U division.  This past fall Catipon's Piece club took home the Peg City Youth Basketball League Title off a monster 20-point performance, and prior to the pandemic he took home Finals MVP honours when his WSSC squad won the Jr Bisons tournament after making the finals at the Jr Grand Am in Grand Forks in the spring of 2019.

Catipon has received nothing but glowing reports and top recommendations from his coaches and school administrators, many of whom mention his strong leadership potential, tenacity, and commitment both on and off the court.  His high school coach, Jason Poponne is one such mentor who notes "I observed Lance represent both his high school and his community in the sport of basketball demonstrating toughness and tenaciousness this high school year with the varsity boys' team at Daniel McIntyre where Lance was the captain of the team.  He represented both his province and country in the NBTC Global Basketball Championships, where he was an integral part of the team, and yet still maintains a high academic standard."  Blazers head coach Scott Martin is thrilled to have a player with such a high level of passion and drive join his team next year, and expects him to factor into the lineup immediately stating "Lance is the second half of our 'Mac Attack' (with fellow recruit Isaiah Araya hailing from Miles Mac).  Lance was Daniel McIntyre's leading scorer and a graduating all-star, he received quality coaching from Jason Poponne and exhibits a smooth inside-out game that will complement Araya's game on the perimeter."

Coming off an MCAC Provincial Championship Finals appearance this past February, the Blazers will soon start gearing up for next season in hopes of capturing the program's first provincial title since 2017.  The team plans to begin their exhibition schedule on Thanksgiving weekend when they'll face CCAA competition at Douglas College in New Westminster, BC, part of the greater Vancouver area.


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