Basketball champs named Team of the Year
Men's team recognized by Toronto Sport Hall of Honour
The Seneca Sting men's basketball team pose after winning the national championship title in March.
Earlier this year, the Seneca Sting men’s basketball team captured a national championship title for the first time ever. And now, the winning 2017-18 men's basketball team is being recognized again. This time, by the Toronto Sport Hall of Honour as the Team of the Year.
The team will be honoured at an official induction ceremony on April 4, 2019 at the Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre.
"We're absolutely thrilled for the team," said Linda Stapleton, Director, Sport and Recreation, upon learning of this distinction, which celebrates accomplishments of those who have brought recognition to the city of Toronto through sport.
According to the coach, it was a team culture started three years ago that enabled the players to go all the way to the national championship.
“They bought into our culture and it’s a testament to their ability to work as a team,” said Jay McNeilly, head coach. McNeilly asked for two simple things. Commitment, that they be punctual. And character, that they be good people. “We were able to change their mindsets and after that, the basketball stuff just came together,” he said.
The historic 2017-18 season saw the Sting win three games in three days against the top teams in the country. It defeated the Lakeland Rustlers (Alberta) in the quarter-final, the Holland Hurricanes (Prince Edward Island) in the semifinal and the Douglas Royals (British Columbia) in the gold-medal game of the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) national championship.
The Sting also ended its regular season as No. 1 in the Ontario Collegiate Athletic Association (OCAA) — the fifth time it has done that. In his first year as head coach, McNeilly, who served as assistant coach for the past two seasons, was named OCAA East Division Coach of the Year. He attributed the team’s success to veteran players and rookies alike who “played for each other on and off the court.” Jordan Anderson was one of them.
A first-year guard named to the East Division All-Rookie Team, Anderson took care of what McNeilly called “dirty work” defensively. “Winning the championship was a really great feeling,” said the Business Administration — Entrepreneurship and Small Business student. “We got better and better every time we stepped on the court and that was very important for us to have the success that we had.”