Bearcat basketball in rebuilding mode

New head coaches Dave Martens and Sean Bosko are taking on the challenge of rebuilding the Columbia Bible College basketball programs.

Of new Columbia Bible College basketball head coaches Dave Martens and Sean Bosko, one thing can be said for sure – they’re not afraid of a little hard work.

Or a lot of hard work, as the case may be.

That much is evident, based simply on the fact that Martens and Bosko accepted the challenge of rebuilding the Bearcats hoops programs.

Martens, who left his previous post as head coach of the Mennonite Educational Institute senior boys to take the helm of the CBC men’s team, is taking over a program that went 1-17 last season in the B.C. Colleges Athletic Association (now known as the PACWest).

Bosko has an even bigger job on his hands with the Bearcats women’s squad, which has won just one game over its last four seasons on the B.C. college circuit. They were 0-18 in league play last year, and 0-26 overall.

Indeed, watching the Bearcats hoopsters play this season would be be the athletic equivalent of watching one of those home renovation shows on HGTV – both involving a process of reconstruction and renewal.

Bosko said that turning things around involves a lot of hard work on the recruiting trail, as well a culture change within the program.

“Once you start losing, it’s easy to continue down that process,” said Bosko, who was an assistant coach with the CBC women last season. “What I want to achieve is a level of compete – to teach the girls that no matter what the score is, the harder we work, the better we get. So if that continues, we’ll be headed in the right direction.”

Already, the Bearcats women have achieved some measurable gains – after going winless last year, they picked up two preseason wins this fall.

Bosko has a trio of sophomore returnees in Lisa Isaaks, Jaclyn McNicol and Sharece Thoutenhoofd, and his seven-member rookie class is headlined by Melissa Spring, a 6’1” post player who helped the W.J. Mouat Hawks to the provincial AAA high school title last season.

“We’ve already got a couple wins under our belt, which makes us feel a little better,” Bosko said. “I’ve got great girls, and they’re learning as fast as they can.”

Martens got a late start to building the 2011-12 edition of the Bearcats – he was hired in late April, with recruiting season already in full swing. But he managed to pull together a solid rookie class featuring a pair of players from Washington state – Kevin Ford and Michael Hunter – complemented by a series of local products.

The CBC men got some bad news when Hunter was declared ineligible to play the first semester, because he’d been on the roster with a U.S. junior college team last season. But Ford has been terrific at the point guard spot, and the Bearcats have some decent depth in the post, highlighted by a pair of 6’6” players – returnee Chris Mader, and rookie Tim Vandraager, an Abbotsford Christian product.

As Martens has gained familiarity with the program, he’s identified a knockdown perimeter shooter or two as the greatest recruiting need for next year.

“It’s pretty clear where we need some help already on our team,” he noted. “If we can keep the key players for another year or two and then add a couple of recruits who fit our specific needs, that will definitely help.”

• The CBC hoopsters host their home openers this weekend at Columbia Place. They face the Camosun Chargers on Friday (women 6 p.m., men 8 p.m.), and the Vancouver Island University Mariners on Saturday (women 1 p.m., men 3 p.m.).

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kevin Fowler of Abbotsford won almost $57,000 in the Lotto 6/49 drawn from Aug. 15. (Submitted photo)
Abbotsford man wins almost $57K in Lotto 6/49

Kevin Fowler matches five out of six numbers, using dog’s age and other numbers

A testing kit can determine the levels of radon in a home. Abbotsford participated in the 2019 100 Radon Test Kit Challenge, and results were released on Oct. 29, 2020. (Image by TakeActionOnRadon from Pixabay)
11 Abbotsford homes had unsafe radon levels following testing

Total of 82 houses tested as part of 100 Radon Test Kit Challenge

Everett Silvertips’ Gage Gonclaves fights with Spokane Chiefs’ Filip Kral for the puck during the game on Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020 in Everett, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Mission’s Gage Goncalves invited to Hockey Canada’s World Juniors selection camp

Goncalves was recently drafted to the NHL in the 2nd round by the Tampa Bay Lightning

Poppy donation boxes will be in place at businesses and organizations across Abbotsford for the 2020 Royal Canadian Legion poppy campaign. (Black Press photo)
In-person poppy locations down, collection boxes increase in Abbotsford

2020 Royal Canadian Legion campaign impacted by COVID-19 pandemic

The former Matsqui-Sumas-Hospital lands are being returned to the Matsqui First Nation. (Submitted)
Abbotsford lands returned to Matsqui First Nation

Nine acres of MSA Hospital lands set to be redeveloped in the coming years

A woman wears a face mask and plastic gloves while browsing books as a sticker on the floor indicates a one-way direction of travel between shelves of books at the Vancouver Public Library’s central branch, after it and four other branches reopened with limited services, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, July 14, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
B.C. reports 234 new COVID cases, 1 death of senior who had attended small birthday party

Roughly 5,700 people are isolating due to being exposed to a confirmed case

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry speaks Thursday (Oct. 29) during a news conference held at Fraser Health office, in video posted to Facebook. (Photo: Government of British Columbai/Facebook)
COVID-19 ‘disproportionately’ affecting Fraser Health: Henry

Health region has about 75 per cent of B.C.’s active cases

Burnaby RCMP responded to a dine-and-dash suspect who fell through a ceiling in March 2020. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Suspected dine-and-dasher falls through ceiling of Burnaby restaurant

A woman believed to be dashing on her restaurant bill fell through the kitchen ceiling

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A can of Canada Dry Ginger Ale is shown in Toronto on Thursday Oct. 29, 2020. The maker of Canada Dry Ginger Ale has agreed to pay over $200,000 to settle a class-action lawsuit launched by a B.C. man who alleged he was misled by marketing suggesting the soda had medicinal benefits. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Joseph O’Connal
B.C. man’s lawsuit over marketing of Canada Dry ginger ale settled for $200K

Soda’s maker, Canada Dry Mott’s Inc., denied the allegations and any liability

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Vancouver Island-based Wilson’s Transportation has expanded to fill some of the routes left unserviced by Greyhound as of Nov. 1, 2018. (Black Press files)
B.C. bus companies say they need help to survive COVID-19

Like airlines, motor coaches have lost most of their revenue

A deer was spotted in October 2020 in Prince Rupert, B.C., with a bright pink yoga ball stuck in its antlers. (Kayla Vickers/Chronicles Of Hammy The Deer Official Page)
Hammy 2.0? Prince Rupert deer spotted with bright pink yoga ball stuck in antlers

The BC Conservation Officer Service is aware of the deer roaming around the city

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Kelowna Mountie hit with 2nd lawsuit in 2 months for alleged assault

Const. Julius Prommer is accused of breaking a woman’s knee during while responding to a noise complaint

Most Read