(Toronto, On) The Biosteel All Canadian Games made their return to U of T’s Goldring Centre after a two-year hiatus on Sunday, showing Canada’s best basketball talent, and this year may be the most talented crop ever to take the court at the games.
The first game of the afternoon was a nail-biter finish as Team Red took a 99-98 victory over Team White.
It felt like anything but an all-star game as Team Red led most of the game with physical defense being played on both ends as Cassandre Prosper and Toby Fournier made life difficult in the paint, sending players to the floor every other possession.
“It was just effort,” said Fournier of the physical tone of the game. “Being able to play alongside teammates like these and work hard just takes that physicality to the next level.”
Duke-bound Emma Koabel came out hot in the second half scoring eight of her 14 points in the opening minutes of the quarter, but it wasn’t until the final moments of the game that Team White led a rally, forcing three turnovers and cutting the lead to just one point. With seconds left on the clock, Dominique Ennis stopped for a three-point shot that rimmed out at the buzzer, leaving Team White just shy of the win.
Raymond High School’s (Raymond, AB) Delaney Gibb led all scorers with 18 points and five rebounds, earning her Team Red MVP honours alongside Fournier, who had 15 points, 14 rebounds, three blocks, and three steals, to take home Team White MVP.
”It’s an all-star game, and I was just here to have fun,” said Gibb.
She added that it was special for her to have the performance she did as an Alberta player who doesn’t get the same coverage as Ontario players do and that she felt great being nominated as one of the best players in all of Canada.
Team Red & Team White MVPs Delaney Gibb (18pts) & Toby Fournier (15pts)
(Courtesy Faz Visions)
The boy’s game turned into a track meet as Team Red beat Team White 135-120 in the final game of the evening.
The first half of the game was a back-and-forth battle in front of a packed crowd that included the likes of Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri and general manager, Bobby Webster as well as top NBA prospect, Shaedon Sharpe.
United Scholastic Academy’s Vasean Allette rose to the occasion with a massive slam dunk on his first bucket of the game before going on to score 30 points for Team White.
“I went out there trying to kill,” said Allette, who was named Team White MVP. “As soon as I dunked on that dude, I knew it was over.”
The game began to fall out of reach for Team White in the second half, however, as Crestwood Prep’s Elijah Fisher and Potter House’s Elijah Mahi battled for the right to be named MVP of Team Red, with Mahi scoring 22 points, and Fisher scoring 28 to take home Team White honours.
The game quickly became a series of showcase dunks and finishes as the intensity of the first half eased up, and Royal Crown Academy’s Thierno Sylla took the opportunity to showcase his three-point range with three made deep bombs in the fourth quarter.
“To have a performance like I did today means a lot to me,” said Fisher. “It shows the hard work and the late nights at the gym and early mornings pay off.”
Fisher also says he wasn’t fazed by the moment, or the big names in attendance for the game.
“No matter who’s in the gym, if it’s nobody, or everyone in the gym, I go hard like it’s my last day,” said Fisher.
Non-MVP stand out performances
Elijah Mahi 6’7” SF (Potter’s House, FL) UNCOMMITTED
Although not seenin Ontario for a while due to him playing in the states, Mahi took centre stage at the Biosteel All-Canadian Game and showed what he was capable of. Crisp passing, crafty handles and capable shooting showed were all on display in the first half of the boy’s game, placing Mahi back in the discussion with NCAA D1 bound names like Fisher, Miller and Josiah Davis.
Elijah Mahi (Courtesy Faz Visions)
Leonard Miller 6’11” (Fort Erie International Academy, Fort Erie, ON)
Miller was one of the top draws coming into the Biosteel game as the biggest prospect in Canadian prep basketball right now. Miller took a back seat in scoring throughout the game but showed he can find offence at any time, like he was all season and in Fort Erie International’s OSBA Final 8 Championship run. In the first half Miller busted out a variety of moves, including a step back midrange jumper at the free throw line that is quickly becoming a signature move for the star guard. Miller finished with 12 points and five rebounds in 18 minutes of action.
A very exciting summer is in store for Miller as the Canadian basketball community await his next steps in his basketball journey which includes his participation on the World Team in the Nike Hoop Summit event at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon this week! Look for Miller to impress the dozens of pro scouts who’ll be taking in all the action at Hoop Summit practices, scrimmages and the showcase game which features the top high school players in the world vs. Team USA, taking place on Friday April 8th. Miller missed the first World Team practice in order to represent for his country here at the BACG, which he felt was very important. Check out the World Team Roster HERE.
Leonard Miller Biosteel Canadian Boys Player of the Year
(Courtesy Faz Visions)
Cassandre Prosper 6’2” CG (Capital Courts Academy, Ottawa, ON)
Prosper’s last month in Canadian prep basketball can only be equalled by Fort Erie International’s Leonard Miller. Crowned OSBA Champion less than a month ago, and now named Biosteel’s player of the year before the girl’s game, Prosper showed why her trophy case is filling up during the game itself. A capable one through five defender who can run the break of a rebound and extend her range to the three-point line, it’s hard to pinpoint any weaknesses in her game right now. All eyes on where the Quebec product goes from here.
Cassandre Prosper Biosteel Canadian Girls Player of the Year
(Courtesy Faz Visions)