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Estevan club basketball teams thrive in the spring

A total of eight teams competed in the Estevan league this spring.
Club basketball players from Estevan gather for a group photo after a great showing at a Yorkton tournament.

ESTEVAN - It's been a successful spring season for a group of club basketball teams from Estevan.

The clubs wrapped up their 2024 campaign at a tournament in Yorkton on June 9. A U15 boys' team won the tournament and another U15 team did well. A U13 boys' team went 2-1.

Coach Dustin Wilson said they had tryouts for the team at the end of March and in early April. Typically in Estevan, he said there have been age groups with a group of kids who were interested and entered tournaments, but they never had much of a program. This year they wound up with eight teams: one each for U11 boys and girls, U13 boys and girls, U15 girls and U17 girls, and two for U15 boys.

"We had almost 100 kids involved in club basketball throughout the spring," said Wilson.

They also competed at a tournament in Moose Jaw and went to provincials in Regina.

Thanks to the success of this year's program, Wilson predicted it might evolve further with a team name and brand.

"With the numbers … it's certainly considered a success, so hopefully it continues to grow next year as we go into the spring," said Wilson.

At provincials, one of the U15 boys' teams had a really good weekend, making it to the playoffs and losing by one point. The U13 boys were competitive with the city teams and had some tight games. The U15 girls won their first game but ran up against some tough Saskatoon teams.

"I've been telling those teams specifically that those groups of girls have been playing together for four or five years. They've got 30 or 40 games under their belts. Meanwhile, ours' are playing their third and fourth games together," said Wilson.

The U11 kids didn't play at tournaments. Wilson hopes that can change next year. 

He described this as the next level of competition, especially at a younger age when facing bigger programs. He believes that the experiences will help them in the future.

"I think it set a nice outlook on future years to show that they have to keep putting work in, and there's another level of basketball for those that really enjoy it. Hopefully moving into next spring, it's on people's radar, and I think it was really good for the sport of basketball in Estevan," he said.