Lakehead is currently reaping the benefits of boasting two strong basketball teams. Not only does a strong team allow your school to win games, but it also provides an advantage in the recruiting game.
The men’s team is losing not only leadership in Andrew Hackner and Jamie Searle, but two strong players for Lakehead. The ‘Wolves are looking to beef up their roster with several new additions from Manitoba.
New recruit Joseph Nitychoruk, a 6’6” winger, led his high school to a provincial championship, was the winner of the MVP award for the province, and was a starter for the under-17 Manitoba provincial team last summer. Nitychoruk is considered to be one of the top players currently emerging from Manitoba, and has been ranked by Hoopsters Canada as a top 10 high school forward in Canada.
Nitychoruk brings size, skill, and strength to the ‘Wolves, who no doubt look to compete for a national title. Another Manitoban, Michael Thorne-Finch, has also committed to Lakehead basketball.
Finch has received top honours in Manitoba for his defensive play, and will help shore up an already strong ‘Wolves defense. If Finch can continue to excel at the CIS level, he will help Greg Carter provide strong defense for the ‘Wolves.
Lakehead’s women’s team has also made some new additions, adding four new players: Jamie Hutcheson, Erika French, Alex Riddle, and Laura Cooper. All of the new additions come from Southern Ontario, except for local talent Laura Cooper.
Erika French will add some impressive size to Wolves lineup. The newly acquired post measures in at 6’4”. In high school French experienced four league championships, two regional silver medals, a top 20 All-Canadian Prospect Camp, two under-19 OBA silver medals, and had four undefeated seasons. Impressive resume. No doubt she was attracted to Lakehead by the success they have been experiencing.
Jamie Hutcheson is also a high profile addition to a ‘Wolves squad that will be sorely missing contributions from Tasia Mckenna. Hutcheson was scouted by several NCAA schools, and heavily sought after by many teams in the CIS. Hutcheson was a member of the Hamilton regional all-star team three times, a provincial MVP, and named to Canada’s top 20 prospect camp.
Both Hutcheson and French stated that they were attracted to Lakehead by the coaching staff and atmosphere of the community. Both players have said that the coaching staff made them feel more than welcome, and felt confident in their ability to lead the team to success. Lakehead also boasts some of the highest attendance in Ontario for games, and that no doubt helped convince the new recruits that the community is behind the Wolves.