TORONTO, Ont. (March 25, 2022) – Canada Basketball announced Friday that Cheryl Jean-Paul will return as Head Coach for Canada ahead of this summer’s FIBA U17 Women's World Cup 2022 in Debrecen, Hungary from July 9-17, 2022.
“It’s exciting returning to an in-person March assessment camp after the last few years of challenges – that ability to spend time with a great returning coaching staff to learn and compete together as a basketball community has been sorely missed," Jean-Paul said. "With some promising young talent to add to the U16 players that competed in Mexico last summer, it will be a great opportunity to continue the development of our age-group athletes in making our mark at the international level in Hungary this summer.”
Last summer, Jean-Paul and her staff led the team to a silver medal at the FIBA U16 Women's Americas Championship 2021 in Guanajuato, Mexico to qualify for this summer’s FIBA U17 Women's World Cup 2022.
Currently the Head Coach at Trinity Western University (Canada West /U SPORTS), Jean-Paul guided the Spartans to a program-best 15-3 regular record this season. This will be Jean-Paul’s fourth year as Head Coach of Canada’s U16 / U17 women’s national team after being a support coach for both the Cadette / Junior National Team programs from 2015-17. She was also a mentor coach as part of the Black Canadian Coaches Association’s (BCCA) inaugural Black Female Coach Mentorship Program (BFCMP).
Jean-Paul’s coaching staff from last summer also remains intact as Fabienne Blizzard and Nate McKibbon are also returning.
As Head Coach of Capital Court Academy, Blizzard recently led her team to the Ontario Scholastic Basketball Association (OSBA) Championship earlier this month. Last season, she was an assistant coach with the Ottawa BlackJacks for their inaugural season in the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL).
Now in his third season as Head Coach of the Western Mustangs (OUA / U SPORTS), this will be McKibbon’s seventh summer with the women’s national team program. Prior to his work with the U16 / U17 women’s national teams over the last several years, McKibbon previously served as an assistant coach with the Development Women’s National Team that finished seventh at the 2017 Summer Universiade.
Christa Eniojukan, Head Coach at York University (OUA / U SPORTS), is joining the staff this summer as a Performance Analyst. A long-time coach for Ontario Basketball, including their U17 provincial team, as well as in the Ontario Scholastic Basketball Association, Eniojukan has been involved in Canada Basketball for several years, including volunteering with the organization's Target Athlete Strategy (TAS).
Canada is in Group C alongside Egypt, Spain and Asia (TBD) for the FIBA U17 Women's Basketball World Cup 2022.
Earlier this month, Canada Basketball announced that 48 athletes from across the country have been invited to participate in the Women's High Performance National Team Age-Group Assessment Camp at Humber College (Toronto, ON) from March 27-31, 2022.
Prior to the camp, Canada Basketball’s Women’s High Performance program is hosting a two-day technical summit to continue the professional development of its women national team NextGen coaches. The summit will introduce the technical points of emphasis from the new Senior Women’s National Team staff, prepare for the upcoming age-group assessment camp and summer national teams, as well as provide staff time together to build team culture and trust through shared experiences.
Canada is currently ranked 8th overall in the FIBA women's age-group rankings, presented by Nike.