The York University Lions basketball program was well represented Aug. 5 at the Canada Basketball national championships in Sherbrooke, Que., as Lions men’s assistant coach Chris Cheng was the head coach for the gold medal-winning Ontario 17-under men’s team.
Cheng led the team to its second consecutive national championship as he also won it last summer on home soil when the tournament was hosted in Toronto. Last summer’s victory was the first time Ontario won the gold in the 17-under division since 2006.
Cheng’s squad went undefeated in the tournament (5-0), beating Manitoba in the finals, 102-65. He ran his personal unbeaten streak to 10 games and owns a record of 14-1 over his three years as Ontario’s head coach at the national championships.
Ontario got by Alberta, 91-49 in their opening game; then cruised passed British Columbia, 111-53. In the first playoff round, Ontario beat New Brunswick 94-39, then the host team from Quebec, 95-46 in the semifinals.
Toronto’s Malcolm Duvivier was named the tournament’s most valuable player; while tournament all-stars from Ontario included Tyrell Bellot-Green, Marcus Lewis, and Juwan Miller.
Cheng has been an assistant with the Lions program since 2008, won the silver medal at the same tournament in 2009, which was his first year in the role. Prior to that he also spent two seasons as an assistant with the squad, winning a bronze medal at the 2009 Canada Summer Games. A fully certified National Coaching Certification Program level three coach, he also earned two Ontario College Athletic Association championships during his term as an assistant with Humber College from 2004 to 2008.