Santa Clara, Calif. – The Santa Clara University men's basketball team announced June 7 it will travel to Vancouver, British Columbia Sept. 5-10, 2011 on a foreign tour where it will play four games vs. Canadian universities. Santa Clara announced Thursday the hotel for the trip for friends and family if they want to stay there as well.
The team will play games on Sept. 6, 8, 9 and 10, 2011. Sept. 7 will be an off day for the Bronco team.
Santa Clara has secured a $180 (CAN) room rate at the Renaissance Vancouver Harbourside Hotel for the dates of September 5-10, 2011. Fans can stay any of those nights to get that rate. Santa Clara is also in the process of planning an event on the 7th for the team and fans. Click here to access the room block information.
Or if family and/or fans prefer, they can call 1-800-905-8582 and ask for the "Santa Clara Basketball Fans" room rate.
Below is the release from June 7, 2011 annoucing the trip:
Santa Clara finished the 2010-11 season with a 24-14 record and won the 2011 CollegeInsider.com Post-Season Tournament by winning its final three games on the road. The 2011-12 Santa Clara team welcomes back All-WCC first team member Kevin Foster, the MVP of the CIT, All-WCC freshman team member Evan Roquemore and Trasolini, who was All-WCC as a sophomore. Both Foster and Trasolini reached their 1000th career point last season with Foster knocking down a WCC-record 140 three pointers to lead the nation (first duo to score 1000 career points in the same season since 1989). In addition Santa Clara returns juniors Raymond Cowels III, who averaged 5.4 ppg in 15.3 minutes and Niyi Harrison, who averaged 5.4 ppg and 3.0 rpg in 14.4 ppg, as well as sophomore John McArthur, who appeared in 36 games in his rookie campaign.
"This trip has been years in the making for a few reasons. One, it gives us the ability to bring Marc back home. Two, it will continue to build the program by utilizing opportunities to improve and grow," said Bronco head coach Kerry Keating. "In planning for the future, extra time with our players and coaches together is always beneficial and this will be a unique challenge for our upperclassmen to help the freshmen assimilate at a quicker pace.
"Vancouver has always been a friendly city to Santa Clara and we look forward to returning the favor by spending quality time there as a program," added Keating who will be in his fifth season at the Bronco helm. "As we learned this past March, anytime we can expose our program and players to a new setting and city it's a win-win and we intend to take advantage of all that Vancouver has to offer."
"I can't wait to go up," said Trasolini. "I'll have a chance to play in front of all my family and friends which will be awesome. I'm really excited to see them and to show the Bronco team Vancouver. I think they'll really like it. It's great to be able to have a good bonding experience with the team and give the new guys some playing time and game reps. We'll get some needed practice and have a chance to have some fun in the great north. I can't wait!"
"I am very excited to go to Vancouver - I haven't been out of the country before," said Foster. "Extra practice is always good especially with all the new faces we have coming in next year. We have an expansive playbook and it will be good to get use to all the plays early on for games that don't go in the record book. As an upperclassmen know I know of know what to expect and so I will work to help out the younger players with how we do things at Santa Clara."
The team will begin practice in the Leavey Center the third week of August. They will practice for 10 days prior to leaving for Canada. The entire team will be available for practice including the four incoming scholarship freshmen (Brandon Clark, Robert Garrett, Karim York and Denzel Johnson). In addition, it will be a chance for last year's redshirt-freshmen Yannick Atanga and Julian Clarke to receive plenty of practice.
"The early practices will be a great time for our coaches to continue helping our player's skill develop and maybe most importantly give us a chance to get our freshmen on board defensively," said Keating.
"Additional practice will be very helpful with getting the freshmen on board - I know I would have benefitted from that last year as well. The principles that I was taught here are really different than high school so it took me awhile to take the next time last season," said McArthur. "Marc's talked a lot about Vancouver and I hope it lives up to the hype."
"I'm most looking forward to kick-starting my redshirt-freshman year and getting off to a good start," said Clarke, a native of Toronto, Canada. "The trip to Vancouver is going to be a great way for us to mesh as a team, and the early practices will do us well heading into the season. I also think Marc will be a solid tour guide - there's more to see in Canada than people realize and it'll be a good experience overall."
The Bronco coaches, players and staff will fly out of San Francisco the morning of Sept. 5 and return in the late afternoon of Sept. 10. Santa Clara is working to set up a block of rooms for alumni, family and fans that want to follow the team during the tour. For more information on their travel plans and hotel please contact SCU Associate Athletic Director Fred Smith at (firstname.lastname@example.org).
"I am excited about the Vancouver reasons for a couple reasons," said senior Phillip Bach. "One, it's a trip to close to home and they can drive up from the Seattle area and see us play in a few games. In addition, it's a great chance for us to get a head start on our season and start practice in mid-August. It jumps starts our season. We can start our season earlier than October and can get the tough practices out of the way for the new guys coming in and a couple redshirts. It's cool to go to Vancouver as well. I've only been once when I was younger and I know now it will be really fun to go there with Marc (from Vancouver) and also our entire team. It's a good way for us to build a stronger bond like we did touring New York City. I am really looking forward to it."
For Cowels it's a chance for him to leave the United States for the first time. "Going to Vancouver will be a great experience," said Cowels. "I have never been out of the country and look forward to seeing what's out there as well as playing against some great competition."
In addition, Cowels commented earlier this week on the mindset of the team. ""Ending our season on a winning note with the CIT title has given us a lot of momentum going into next year," explained Cowels. "We've gotten more recognition nationally because of it, but it has also raised others and our own expectations for our team. We know we have lofty goals, but we think that with the experience we have coming back and the talent of the freshmen class coming in that we can do it. The morale of the team is the highest it's been since I've been here, and I think we have a lot of confidence and momentum moving forward."
Roquemore echoed Cowels thoughts on the mindset of the team headed into the summer. "I agree with Ray. We can see that our team is getting better and we know that we have high expectations so we are anxious to get into the summer and our workouts," said the sophomore who averaged 11.7 ppg and 3.66 apg. "I've heard Vancouver is a cool place to be so it should be a lot of fun. It's a good chance for our team to bond. We bond well here and I know when we got out of town it will be even more fun. Having the extra practice for our team will help, especially the freshmen. It will give them a good head-start going in. I'm really looking forward to it. It will be my first time going out of the country and I am sure it will be a good experience."
Santa Clara's assistant coaches are also looking forward the time with the players and each made a few good points on the extra practice time and Canadian tour.
"Everyone in our program is excited about the opportunity to get our returnees mixed in with our new players and get them all on the court together. It will be a great opportunity to learn what will be expected of them come October 15," said assistant coach James Ware.
"The team will get an opportunity to spend extended periods of time together from meals to games to bus rides to sight-seeing – all the great things an extended road trip can give you," said Bronco assistant coach Sam Scholl. "It helped our team in Dallas and New York City to be able to experience a number of cultural things in addition to their time on the court. It has helped build our togetherness to help win a championship and we look forward to that same type of thing in Canada. As a staff we are excited that Marc is getting to go home to Vancouver and play in front of his family and friends. We are excited about him being home."
"A constant message of ours is two things our players can control are their attitude and effort. For the young guys as long as they bring a good attitude and try to be a good teammate every day, practicing as hard as they can – they will be successful," said assistant coach Dustin Kerns. "Especially to our new guys, they need to be open-minded; especially early on there will be a lot of learning for everyone. Not just on the basketball court, but the type of effort we bring to all that we do at Santa Clara."