The Lake City 56ers are ready to roll.
Lake City, which will operate out of the Dartmouth region and is the former Windsor Edge, has announced its head coach for the 2024 Maritime Women’s Basketball Association season.
The 56ers have tabbed Patrick Havard to lead the club into the MWBA’s third season.
Lake City played its first two MWBA years in Windsor before transferring to the Dartmouth, Cole Harbour, North Preston region.
Havard is certainly no stranger to the court sidelines.
A 19-year coaching veteran, he has guided teams at the professional level to university and post-secondary play in five different provinces.
He is presently coaching North Nova Education Centre varsity girls’ basketball team, a post he has held for two seasons.
Havard was head coach of the East Coast Basketball League’s Truro Tide before that pro league folded in 2023. He was also lead assistant coach under Paul Mokeski with the former Moncton Miracles of the National Basketball League of Canada.
He guided Basketball Nova Scotia to a bronze medal in basketball at the 2022 Canada Summer Games after narrowly losing in overtime to Ontario for a chance at gold.
Havard spent three seasons as head coach of Crandall University Chargers from 2013 to 2016 at the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association level. He helped guide Crandall to its only CCAA national tournament appearance during his tenure.
‘I am grateful to have the opportunity to coach with the 56ers in a fantastic league like the MWBA,’ he said. ‘My goal is to help these talented women showcase just how good basketball at this level is. Having coached in the Atlantic University Sport for seven years and the CCAA for five years, I am well aware of the high level of play from our Maritime schools and have an understanding of the immense talent Canada has on the women’s side.’
The MWBA has helped three players jump from the league to the professional ranks in its two seasons of operation.
The league showcases a remarkable array of talent and is attracting plenty of attention.
‘There needs to be more opportunities to play professional level basketball for females and this league is a step in the right direction,’ Havard said. ‘I am passionate about growing the popularity of women’s basketball, and excited to do what I can to help the process.’
The MWBA will open its third season of operation on May 2.
Lake City joins Nova Scotia rivals Halifax Thunder and Halifax Hornets along with New Brunswick’s Fredericton Freeze, Moncton Mystics, Miramichi Her-icanes and Saint John’s Port City Fog in the seven-team circuit.
Miramichi joined the MWBA this season.
Training camps will begin for most teams in early April.
– Briercrest College Photo (Havard)