NMBA Will be Well Represented at Canadian Championships

Top photo is Team NB under-17 boys with former Lions Leo Titarenko (5), Jared Stafford (7) and head coach John Hickey, back row, far right. Middle picture is BNB under-15 girls and former NMBA Brook Billings (4). Bottom picture is under-15 boys and head coach Ryan Chase, back row, second from right.

 For many, it's the most wonderful time of the year.

 Certainly, it will be an exciting and memorable experience for coaches and athletes preparing for Basketball Canada's age class championships that unfold this week in Edmonton, Alta.

 Competition will be held at the under-15 and under-17 divisions for boys and girls.

 The Northside Minor Basketball Association is well represented at the nationals.

 John Hickey is the head coach of the Basketball New Brunswick under-17 boys' team and Ryan Chase has similar duties for the under-15 boys' side.

 Hickey is the longtime head coach of Leo Hayes High Lions and Chase is his assistant at the New Brunswick Interscholastic Athletic Association level. The tandem led Team N.B. to a fourth place finish at last year's Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke, Que. Hickey is past president of the NMBA and coached the bantam A boys this past season. Chase is an NMBA board member who guided the bantam A girls in 2013-14.

 Former Lion Brook Billings is part of the under-15 girls' team. Former NMBA players Leo Titarenko and Jared Stafford play for Hickey's squad.

 Billings and the under-15 girls open against Prince Edward Island on July 25 and face Alberta on July 26. Chase's squad battles British Columbia on July 25 and Newfoundland on July 26. The under-17 girls battle Saskatchewan on July 25 and meet Newfoundland on July 26. Hickey's crew face Ontario on July 25 and playing out of what's known as the Power Pool (four teams opposed to three) will play a winner v. winner; loser v. loser game in its second outing.

 All games will be available for viewing on-line.

 The NMBA will provide links later in the week for the games and will try its best to keep you up to date on results through the website or Twitter @nmbalions.

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