The Sardis secondary senior boys basketball team will kick off their 2012-12 home season with a bang this weekend with an exhibition game against defending AAA provincial champions Terry Fox Friday night.
"It's one of the biggest games in Chilliwack history," said coach Kyle Graves, who hopes to pack the Sardis gym with fans to cheer on the hometown Falcons.
The senior boys game, sponsored by Little Caesars Pizza, will be the highlight of two days of basketball at the school this Friday and Saturday and feature prizes and halftime competitions for cash and a chance to win free pizza for a year.
But Sardis is also getting its feeder schools on board, hosting a showdown Friday afternoon between Grade 8 teams from Mt. Slesse and Vedder middle schools as well as a game between Grade 9 teams from Ved-der middle and Terry Fox.
"What I'm really hoping to do is have the Grade 8s and 9s look forward to being part of Sardis Falcons basketball and being in this gym," Graves told the Times.
The Sardis Grade 10 junior team, meanwhile, will take on Terry Fox just before the senior boys game.
That the top-ranked Port Coquitlam team is willing to travel so far up the valley to play one of their first games against the Falcons is a tribute to how far the Sardis program has come, said Graves.
A couple of Terry Fox coaches already know Sardis Grade 11 standouts-guard Eric Rogers and centre Hayden Lejeune-from coaching B.C.'s provincial team, so it wasn't hard for Graves to pull strings to make the game happen.
"They know we have some talented players and I also played with a coach at Terry Fox in university, so I just reached out to them and they agreed to it," he said.
The Falcons were knocked out of the Fraser Valley Championships early last year after starting point guard Logan Rogers broke his ankle, but prospects for this season look good, and Graves is gunning for his team to make the provincials.
"It's my fourth year coaching here and it's the first time I've actually had 12 basketball players, so I'm excited about that," he said. "I have 12 really dedicated guys and we've got a few really talented players and a lot of guys that can fill a lot of different holes for us, so it's looking good."
? Friday's game tips off at 7: 45 p.m. For more information, visit www.sardisathletics.com.