Dorchester Beavers' point guard selected as Mr. Basketball for the TVRA South-East
helped bring the sport back to the forefront at the high school
Wednesday, May 13th, 2020
By Rob J. Ross
DORCHESTER, ON. - Garrett Snyders has been at the centre of basketball for the Lord Dorchester Secondary School Beavers throughout his career.
His contribution, leadership and skills, led to the Grade 12 student being named Mr. Basketball this season for the Thames Valley Regional Athletics South-East Division.
"It's a huge honour. I was not expecting to be named that in any means," said Snyders. "It feels amazing to be recognized by all of the coaches that I've played against and that they respect me."
The point guard received the news from LDSS basketball coach Curt Pollard.
"When Mr. Pollard had me fill out the form, it was let's do this and see what happens, but I never thought it would be awarded to me. It was a shock," said Snyders. "Mr. Pollard messaged me. We've been talking basketball and he said hey, i just got an email from TVRA. I was star struck."
Pollard credits Snyders for making an impact on Dorchester basketball since day one.
"He's been Mr. Basketball at LDSS since he walked in the doors in Grade nine," Pollard said. "We've had some good basketball players lately and they all look to him as their leader."
Snyders has been team captain in each of his four seasons and Pollard describes the point guard as a hard working, soft spoken, confident, dedicated leader.
"He has been the heart and soul of the Lord Dorchester basketball program for four years," Pollard wrote in Snyders' nomination form. "He is an excellent sportsman who is gifted with a basketball. He helped those around him develop to reach their full potential regardless of their skill."
Pollard adds, Snyders puts up points and "impressively he's a better defender and play maker.'
Letting his actions on the court speak for him, Snyders hopes that was a major reason coaches voted for him.
"What I try to project myself is a not too vocal, but lead by example type of guy. I'm going to go do it versus tell other people to do it. I try to play my heart out every game." said Snyders. "I try to humbly set myself apart by using my game versus my voice. I'm hoping that is kind of what they saw."
A defining moment in Snyders' career was the Western Ontario Secondary Schools Athletic Association (WOSSAA) 1-A junior boys final in 2018.
"That is definitely my favourite moment of high school basketball. That WOSSAA win by far surpasses all other games. As a team we came together and it was just phenomenal feeling that, yes we won."
Another memorable game, the team's best this season points out Snyders, was the WOSSAA senior semifnals against London Westminster.
"We did lose but the team came together in that challenge. It was perfectly timed that we came together and played our hearts out. Westminster was probably better than us but we gave them a good run for their money. Our best performance."
Snyders scored 30 points in the six point loss, before dropping 29 against London Mgr. Bruyere, a win in the bronze medal match.
His parents, Tom and Brenda, "have a big impact on me and how I've been successful so far," while brother Hayden and sister Faith, "have been great just playing with outside and helping me get better."
For Snyders, coach Pollard, "is 100 percent my go to guy in basketball. He pushed me in the direction to play competitive basketball in the start."
Last year Snyders played club ball with London Gold Medal, helping the team place sixth in division one, at the Ontario Basketball provincials.
This year's club season was put on hold just four games into the season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, part of the reason Snyders has not ruled out returning to Dorchester next year.
His interest in "building stuff and designing cool things," has Snyders looking at mechanical engineering or mechatronics programs at university.
Snyders has also played soccer at LDSS and been on the cross country team, but the hard court is where he has made his biggest impact.
"Basketball culture has changed since I was in grade nine. Basketball was an afterthought because Dorchester is such a hockey town. When I started playing with a few other guys and we thought we could have a nice team here," said Snyders. "I hope it helps Dorchester become more known for basketball, having that diversity."
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