The Mount Royal University Cougars men’s basketball team is experiencing some changes on the court this season. Six new players have been added to the team while five players have moved on from the Cougars.
The Cougars lost three starting players off their roster, Josh Ross, Noah Lewis, and Ryan Cunningham. Ross was the team’s leading scorer and rebounder averaging 20.4 points and 9.1 rebounds per game. He was the fifth best scorer and third best rebounder in the Canada West Conference last year.
There are some holes that will need to be filled this season with the loss of those five players. The Cougars will be looking for their veterans to step up and fill that gap. Nine players are returning for another year at MRU. Three of these players are in their fifth and final year of playing; Glen Yang, L.J. Hegwood, and Charn Gill. Yang and Hegwood return to the Cougars starting five and will be relied on the most to lead this team.
One player to watch this season is Patrick Vanderveldon. He sat out last season as a red shirt due to U Sport eligibility rules. He transferred from Trinity Western University to MRU. The six foot 10 inch tall big man adds size that the Cougars haven’t had since the 2016-17 season. Vanderveldon is a presence at the rim on both ends of the court. His height allows him to be a shot blocker defensively and an offensive threat down low.
Five of the Cougars six new players are eligible to play this year. Adam Pahl will sit out as a redshirt this season because he transferred from the University of Northern British Columbia this year.
Last year the Cougars placed ninth in the Canada West Conference and just missed the eight team playoff. This year’s team will look to improve on that placement. The Cougars play their home games at the Kenyon Court at Mount Royal University.