Mount Allison to host 2024 CCAA National Men’s Basketball Championship, March 13-16

11 Mar 2024

SACKVILLE, NB — Eight top university and college men’s basketball teams from across Canada will gather at Mount Allison University in Sackville, NB this week for the 2024 Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Men’s Basketball National Championship.

The host Mount Allison Mounties will be joined by the VIU Mariners of Nanaimo, BC, Pacific Western (PACWEST) Conference Champions; Keyano Huskies of Fort McMurray, AB, Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) Champions; Humber Hawks of Toronto, ON, the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA) Champions; Vanier Cheetahs of Montreal, QC, Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) Champions; and the Mount Saint Vincent University Mystics of Halifax, NS who captured the Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association (ACAA) title.

Wildcard teams joining those six squads will be the Camosun Chargers of Victoria, BC (PACWEST) and the George Brown Huskies (OCAA) of Toronto, ON.

Play gets underway Wednesday, March 13 at the newly refurbished McCormack Gymnasium on the Mount Allison campus and concludes with the bronze and gold medal games on Saturday, March 16. This is the first time Mount Allison has hosted the national men’s championship following the successful hosting of the 2018 CCAA National Women’s Championship.

Jacques Bellefleur, director of athletics and recreation at Mount Allison, congratulates all the teams that qualified for the tournament.

“This championship is the first national sporting event hosted by the University since the pandemic and our entire team is eager to showcase the new gymnasium, our campus, and the Town of Sackville, while hosting Canada’s best CCAA men’s basketball teams,” Bellefleur adds.

Jacques Bellefleur

The championship gets started Wednesday with four quarterfinal matches:
Game 1 – Humber Hawks vs. MSVU Mystics, 1 p.m.
Game 2 – Keyano Huskies vs. Camosun Chargers., 3 p.m.
Game 3 – VIU Mariners vs. George Brown Huskies, 6 p.m.
Game 4 – Vanier Cheetahs vs. Mount Allison Mounties, 8 p.m.

Play continues Thursday with the bronze medal quarterfinals and championship semifinals, followed Friday by the seventh-place game, and two bronze semifinals. The championship concludes Saturday with the bronze medal final at 5 p.m. and the gold medal game at 7:30 p.m.

The championship will also feature the annual CCAA national awards banquet on Tuesday night at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Moncton, where Coach of the Year, Player of the Year, and All-Canadian awards will be presented.

Norval McConnell ('80), chair of the tournament organizing committee and a member of the Mounties basketball teams of the late 1970s, says the University and organizing committee are honoured to be hosting this year’s CCAA Men’s Basketball National Championships.

“After successfully hosting the 2018 CCAA Women’s Basketball Championships in 2018, we are proud to host at the new upgraded McCormack Gymnasium. To the visiting teams, welcome to the heart of the Maritimes at Mount Allison,” McConnell adds.

Norval McConnell

Tournament and day passes are available for the tournament via Eventbrite:

Daily updates during the tournament will be posted on the CCAA website and social media:

Mount Allison Mounties

Home: Sackville, NB

Enrollment: 2,300

Regular Season Record: 9-9

Championship Run: Lost in semi-final of Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association (ACAA) Championship — 2024 National Host

Players to Watch: Tim Ellison, third year, 6’10”, first team ACAA, ACAA Defensive Player of the Year. Ellison led Mounties in points, rebounds, field goal percentage. Jonas Munroe, third-year guard, 14 points per game and second in team scoring. Eddie Surur, first-year point guard, averaged 11 points per game. Gayo Isaya, transfer at Christmas, two-time ACAA Defensive Player of the Year.

From the Coach: “We are a very young team with no graduating players, so a strong nucleus back next year. Our team was besieged by injuries in the first half of the season, with nine different players missing multiple games. Started the second half of the season at 2-7, but with a healthy squad, won six out of seven to get back in the ACAA conversation. Won our quarterfinal at the ACAA Championship and then lost a heartbreaking one-point game to No. 1 ranked St. Thomas in the semis. Our approach has always been multiple defences and our offence got on track in the second half.” – Coach Steve Chapman

Championship History: This year marked the third appearance by the Mounties in the CCAA National Championship in the past eight years — 2016-2017, 2019-2020 (Championships cancelled due to COVID), and this year as the tournament host. 

VIU Mariners

Home: Nanaimo, BC 

Enrollment: 12,000

Regular Season Record: 20-4

Championship Run: Won Pacific Western Collegiate Association (PACWEST) Championship

Players to Watch: VIU’s big man, Adam Anhold, was PACWEST’s player of the year. A lot of our actions go through him when he's playing with a high energy level and trying to dominate inside. Kai Leighton and Ryan Bastian, captains, lead the charge and dictate the toughness, the demeanor, the workman-like attitude.

From the Coach: “The whole year, we worked towards being a team that was about the process. We have certain standards we're trying to achieve. We wanted to be a tough team. We wanted to be a together team. We focus on defense with Coach [Mark] Simpson and what he works on all year: drilling in habits and toughness. For both games [at the PACWEST championship], we did a great job defensively. Our defense won us those games. On the offensive side, we worked hard to get good shots and play inside out.” — Coach Matt Kuzminski

Championship History: Assistant Coach Scott Marr and Coach Kuzminski have both been at VIU for 12 years and have taken the team to the national tournament eight times. VIU has won medals at eight nationals, including three gold. They won bronze at the 2023 tournament.

Keyano Huskies

Home: Fort McMurray, AB

Enrollment: 3,215

Regular Season Record: 17-3

Championship Run: Won the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) Championship

Players to Watch: The Huskies have a lot of depth. Coach Wielenga says on any given night, any of their starters — Keenan Miller, DJ Haynes, Omeechi Williams, Evan Meyer, and Nahshon Hurst — can be the difference maker.

From the Coach: “I think we had a very successful regular season. We had a lot of close games early that we found ways to win. I think that had a lot to do with the guys being around the winning program from years past and I think we kept improving each and every weekend and facing new challenges as a new team trying to gel. We really relied on our defence at all times and that's something that we try to hang our hat on.” – Coach Jeremy Wielenga

Championship History: The Huskies have risen to among the elite in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Association, going from bronze in 2019-2020 to silver in 2021-2022, fourth in 2022-2023, and then winning the title this year. They had a 47-game regular season winning streak from January 2022 to early in the 2023-2024 season. This will be the Huskies third trip to nationals. They finished 8th in 2013 and tied for 5th in 2016 when they were hosts.

Humber Hawks

Home: Toronto, ON

Enrollment: 43,000

Regular Season Record: 16-5

Championship Run: Won the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA) Championship

Players to Watch: Jalen Menzies is an CCAA All-Canadian and Ontario Colleges Athletic Association championship MVP. Coach Omar Miles was also named OCAA Coach of the Year.

Championship History: Humber is a frequent squad at CCAA championships, competing in 23 tournaments and posting an overall record of 50-24. They are seven- time national champions, including as recently as 2022, and have claimed four silver and four bronze medals.


Vanier Cheetahs

Home: Montreal, QC

Enrollment: 6,500

Regular Season Record: 20-2

Championship Run: Won Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) Championship

Players to Watch: Yanis Malanda and Raphael Dumont both won First Team all-star awards this year. Both are described as good leaders and versatile players who play at both ends of the floor.

From the Coach: “The Cheetahs finished in second place in the RSEQ regular season before winning the conference championship. We live up to our team name, playing fast, hard, and together.” — Coach Feras Saaida

Championship History: Vanier lost in the national semifinals in 2019. In 2020, the Cheetahs were ranked first going into Nationals, but the championships were cancelled due to COVID-19. Vanier has twice hoisted the national championship banner, in 1987 and 2011.

MSVU Mystics

Home: Halifax, NS

Enrollment: 4,400

Regular Season Record: 13-5

Championship Run: Won the Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Association (ACAA) Championship

Players to Watch: The Mystics feature five double-digit scorers. Jaxon Smith was a second team ACAA all-star and led the team in points per game with 15.4. Jaydan Smith was also a second team ACAA All-Star, averaged 14.8 ppg, and had 31 points, including the game winning shot in the ACAA final. Chase Tynes, was a first-team ACAA All-Star and CCAA All-Canadian, adding 13.8 ppg, 11.1 rebounds, and also led the team in assists, blocks and steals. Isaac Matheson is a second-year dynamic guard and averaged 13.6 ppg. Adam Callaghan averaged 12.9 ppg off the bench.

From the Coach: “Our regular season can best be described as three parts: we began the season 8-0, enough to earn the No. 1 spot in the CCAA rankings entering Christmas. Our second semester saw us struggle to a 1-4 record, before winning four games in a row to enter the playoffs with a record of 13-5, good enough for 2nd place. The style of play that worked for us was playing with pace and sharing the ball. We had five different players average double figures in scoring and I think that speaks to our ball movement. On defense we try to limit team’s strengths and defend as all five.” — Coach Danny DePalma.

Championship History: MSVU has a league-leading 15 ACAA championships and has medaled twice at Nationals — a silver in 2008 and a bronze in 1993.

Camosun Chargers

Home: Victoria, BC

Enrollment: 14,800

Regular Season Record: 16-8

Championship Run: Silver Medalist at Pacific Western Collegiate Association (PACWEST) Championship

Players to Watch: Lucas Sheets was named a 1st  team Conference All-Star and led the team in points per game. Jaime Palamos-Molins is the captain and engine on both ends of the floor. He led the conference in assists per game and was 3rd in steals per game. Jesse Vogel has added a consistent scoring punch to the group this year. He was player of the game in both of the conference playoff games and was named to the all-tournament team, highlighted by a 28-point performance in the conference championship game.

From the Coach: “We are an experienced group who returned 11 out of 13 active roster players from last year's conference bronze medal team. We take great pride in our approach on the defensive end of the floor and gave up the fewest points in the PACWEST conference this year. Our regular season had a few bumps in the road due mostly to injuries. We only had our main rotation players healthy for four games out of 24 in the regular season. Barring any setbacks in preparation this week, the team should be healthy entering the tournament.” — Coach Geoff Pippus

Championship History: This is only Camosun’s third appearance in the national championship tournament. The team has never finished better than eighth in the nation, but this year marked just the second time in school history Camosun has recorded winning records for three consecutive years.

George Brown Huskies

Home: Toronto, ON

Enrollment: 32,000

Regular Season Record: 14-4

Championship Run: Silver Medalist at Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA) Championship

Players to Watch: Christian Tabiri is a first Team OCAA East Division All-Star and an OCAA Championships All-Star. Tabiri has taken his game to another level this season, and averaged career-highs with 15.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. Jacob Masters is a second team OCAA East Division All-Star and OCAA Championship All-Star. With numerous high-level guards graduating last season, a hole was left at the guard position, and Jacob has stepped up. His ball-handling and shooting abilities allow him to take over a game. Jeremiah Brown is a second team OCAA East Division All-Star and the East Division’s Sixth Man of the Year. The fifth-year forward has been consistent this season and averaged 15.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists, and 1.9 steals per game. Whenever the Huskies needed a basket in pivotal moments, No. 15 was usually the man to do it.

From the Coach: “Our conference tournament featured four tough games. We played a great, defensively-minded Humber team in the final. Our style of play is anchored by our team defense, as consistently getting stops allows us to play at our pace and get out in transition.” — Coach Jason Dawkins

Championship History: The Huskies have won gold or silver medals in three of the last four years in the OCAA. Over that stretch, the team has posted an impressive 54-10 record and collected 24 individual awards. The program won the CCAA National Championship once, back in 1975.

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