GPRC Wolves Elite Camp, a great success
This last weekend saw athletes from all over the Peace Region, including Beaverlodge, Sexsmith, Fairview, Jasper, High Prairie, La Crete, Fort St John, Dawson Creek and Yellowknife, NT attend the annual GPRC Wolves Elite Basketball Camp.
Guest coaches Steve Sir and Lee Danderfer, along with Wolves Head Coaches Graeme Ryder and Thomas Slifka, brought a wealth of basketball skill and knowledge to the Camp, giving the athletes a chance to learn from some very talented coaches and players.
Sir, who played professionally for 8 years, holds two NCAA 3 point records and also played for San Diego State, Northern Arizona and the Edmonton Energy talked about training with detail and overemphasizing things. “If we take shortcuts in practice we will never be able to repeat those skills in a game”. Sir also talked about finding what is going to make someone special, adding that “not all of us have great athleticism or size, so, we have to find a different way to be successful”.
New GPRC Wolves Men’s Basketball Coach, Thomas Slifka remarked that "having Steve at our Elite Camp was such a fantastic experience. Steve’s knowledge of the game is broad and every person in our gym this weekend now understands basketball on a deeper level, including the parents and coaches."
Danderfer, a Grande Prairie native who played for the ACAC’s Augustana Vikings and CIS’s MacEwan Griffins was coached by Slifka who stated that he “had the pleasure of coaching Lee at MacEwan and there aren't many people who have spent more time in a gym than Lee. He is a true success story who has exceeded expectations everywhere he goes” going on to say that “he is great role model to young basketball players”.
Danderfer talked to the young athletes about working hard and not listening to people who try to discourage you. "Everyone told me I wasn't fast enough, big enough, I wasn't from a big town and I wasn't recruited. I'm here to tell you that it doesn't matter. I'm a 5 foot 10 inch kid from Grande Prairie, Alberta” said Danderfer, echoing Coach Slifka’s comments about hard work and determination.
Along with basketball skill sessions the camp featured guest appearances by Matthew Bain (MMB Counselling & Consulting, Alberta Sport Development Centre NW, & GPRC) and Richard Sylvester (Alberta Sport Development Centre NW).
Bain, a Mental Performance Consultant (MPC) - Canadian Sport Psychology Association, did an hour classroom session with the athletes introducing some mental skills that can be applied to high level sport performance. Working with high level athletes ranging from GPRC Wolves teams to Provincial & National level athletes, Bain was able to introduce the athletes to the mental side of the game which becomes more important as the level of sport performance increases.
Sylvester, Master of Sciences – Kinesiology & Head Trainer for ASDC NW, used his hour session to take the campers through some on court training exercises he uses to train College, University & National level athletes. The athletes got a sweat on as they went through a warm up & then concentrated on exercises designed to improve their sprinting efficiency.
New GPRC Wolves Women’s Basketball Coach Graeme Ryder, commented that “with this being the only Elite Camp offered in the Peace region, GPRC Wolves Basketball programs felt it was important to include Mental Skills and Strength and Conditioning sessions to show the next wave of Wolves athletes the other aspects of high performing sport expected off the court.”
Slifka takes Team Alberta to Canada Summer Games
GPRC Wolves Men’s Basketball Coach, Thomas Slifka had a great summer coaching the Alberta U16 Basketball Team, including local talent Cameron Macdonald. After tryouts were held in April, the team was selected to travel to Fort McMurray and participate in the Western Canada Summer Games.
With exhibition matches against Team Saskatchewan and Team British Columbia in Langley, BC and a tournament in Seattle, WA, the boys put in well over 60 hours of practice this summer, which stood them in good stead for the Summer Games.
After dominating Team Yukon and Northwest Territories, the boys earned a spot in the bronze medal game which saw Team Alberta battle Team Saskatchewan, and after a tough match, Team AB settled for 4th place with only a seven point difference.
“Competition was stiff, but the boys stepped up and delivered. All their hard work paid off to get to the Bronze medal match” said Coach Slifka who was immensely proud of his team’s achievement in Wood Buffalo, “The team had a lot of fun and improved tremendously over the summer” he concluded.
Congratulations to Coach Slifka and the Team AB boys on a job well done.
GPRC Hires New Men’s Basketball Coach
May 28 2015
For Immediate Release
GPRC is pleased to welcome Thomas Slifka to the 2015 16 coaching staff. Mr. Slifka will be the new GPRC Wolves Men’s Basketball Coach replacing Jonathan Verhesen.
Slifka has been working with the MacEwan University Griffins Men’s Basketball Program and the University of Alberta Pandas Basketball Programs since 2012. Prior to that he worked with Kent State University in their basketball program. He was the Lead Assistant with the Men’s Basketball program then took on the Head Coach position of the Women’s Basketball Program.
“I am excited in accepting the head coach position with the GPRC Wolves,” noted Slifka. “The philosophy of the program, the attitude of the players and the strong community support of the program were integral in making my decision.”
Slifka played basketball with the University of Akron – Wayne and played tennis with the University of Wisconsin – Fox Valley. He has been coaching in the provincial team program of Basketball Alberta and with the University of Alberta Junior Pandas program. He has been instructing various courses in the Kinesiology program while working on his Masters of Arts – Coaching Studies at the University of Alberta.
His experience, dedication to coaching and understanding of community based programs will be a great fit to the GPRC Wolves Basketball Program.
For more information, please contact:
Athletic Director GPRC
GPRC Wolves Men’s Basketball Coach
Wolves Split on the Road
November 3rd, 2014
The GPRC Wolves lost the Friday night game against the Lakeland College Rustlers 77-65. But the team rebounded and out battled the Rustlers on Saturday afternoon and won the game 84-81.
The Wolves struggled on Friday to score the ball consistently and could never get into an offensive flow. Robert Myles III was named player of the game as he finished with 9 points and 6 steals. Saturday afternoon was a different story as the Wolves were able to execute offensively and take control of the game and then held off a late comeback from rustlers. Jordan Brown was named player of the game as he finished with 23 points, 9 rebounds and 4 clutch free throws down the stretch.
The Wolves now have the weekend off, until they hit the road again to play the Concordia Thunder, on November 14-15 in Edmonton
GPRC Wolves Player of the Game
|Robert Myles III
|October 31, 2014
||November 1st, 2014
|9 pts., 6 stls.
||23 pts., 9 reb.
For more information on Wolves Mens' Basketball contact:
Thomas Slifka, Head Coach
Grande Prairie Regional College