OFSAA basketball coming to Fellowes
Fellowes teacher and basketball coach Pat Childerhose (pictured here) will be serving as the OFSAA convener along with Bruce Harle.
For the first time ever, a provincial men’s high school basketball tournament will be taking place in Pembroke.
Fellowes High School won the bid to host the 2018 Ontario Federation of School Athletics Association (OFSAA) Boys’ AA Basketball Championships this March.
The first OFSAA Boys’ AA Basketball Championship took place in 1968 and this 2018 tournament will serve as the first time that it’s hosted in Renfrew County.
The event was secured by Fellowes teacher and basketball coach Pat Childerhose who developed the bid package, which was submitted and later approved by OFSAA officials.
With OFSAA being the pinnacle for high school athletes in Ontario, Childerhose expressed that he’s very excited to bring the elite tournament to Renfrew County and to have his school welcome the province’s top high school basketball teams in their gymnasium.
“We really wanted to host OFSAA to bring the very best high school basketball to the area,” said Childerhose who will be acting as the OFSAA tournament convener, along with Bruce Harle. “Basketball is certainly growing in popularity – not only at a local level, but nationwide as the Toronto Raptors are doing very very well and they have a pretty strong and vibrant following – so we just want to foster that enthusiasm for basketball and show the local community that this is the highest level of basketball that they can get for 17 to 18 year-old boys.”
Taking place from March 5th to the 7th, games will be held on the basketball courts at Fellowes, Opeongo High School and Valour High School. The ultimate championship game will take place at the host school, Fellowes.
A total of 20 senior boys teams, coming from all corners of the province, will be competing in the three-day tournament. With Fellowes being the host school, they’ve also secured a place among the 20, giving the coaches and players a rare opportunity to compete at an elite level in front of their hometown supporters.
“One of the main objectives of OFSAA is that it is full participation from the entire province. So there will be guaranteed representation from schools all over the province, with teams coming from as far away as places like Toronto, Windsor, Thunder Bay and St. Catharines,” said Childerhose. “OFSAA is divided into 18 geographical associations, so that makes 18 teams that will be coming plus Fellowes gets a berth as the host and last year's gold medal winner – Ottawa's Ashbury College – also gets a berth.”
As the event will attract several hundred visitors to the area, Childerhose said that he’s eager to showcase Pembroke’s first-class facilities, its pride, its hospitality and its passion for sports such as basketball.
“I'm looking forward to running a high level tournament with great basketball and the opportunity to show off our area to the province. It's an Olympic year so you feel like PyeongChang as the eyes of the world are on them and for three days the eyes of the province (in terms of basketball) will be on Pembroke – so that's a neat feeling,” said Childerhose. “With that comes a little bit of pressure, but we have a very good committee here and dedicated community members and teachers and we're going to put on a good show.”