Abbotsford – The Fraser Valley Bandits have announced that Virgil Hill and Kyle Graves will be the team’s Assistant Coaches for its inaugural season in the Canadian Elite Basketball League (CEBL), the Official First Division Professional League Partner of Canada Basketball.
Hill and Graves join Head Coach and General Manager Peter Guarasci to help form a trio of leaders on the Bandits’ bench. Together, they will be tasked with evaluating prospective talent in advance of the CEBL Entry Draft on March 16, and also assessing the Bandits’ Training Camp roster in advance of the team’s home opener at Abbotsford Centre on Thursday, May 9, against the Guelph Nighthawks.
Graves’ basketball roots run deep in the Fraser Valley. After leading Chilliwack’s Sardis Secondary School to its first-ever provincial tournament appearance in 2000 and helping the team earn a top-15 provincial ranking in 2002, Graves took his talents to the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) where he emerged as a force on the glass and in the post for the UFV Cascades. Graves served as the Cascades’ team captain for four years, twice being named a British Columbia Colleges Athletic Association All-Star (now known as the Pacific Western Athletic Association). He was instrumental in helping UFV win two BCCAA Championships prior to driving UFV to its first-ever Canadian Interuniversity Sport (now known as U SPORTS) postseason birth against the University of British Columbia (UBC).
Today, Graves continues to develop as a leader in the Chilliwack community. In addition to teaching at Sardis Secondary School, Graves is the Founder of Chilliwack Basketball Club. His program serves as a stepping stone for Chilliwack youth to access elite basketball instruction and has become the home of skills training in the region, as well as boys and girls club programming thanks to more than 200 players joining the club’s elementary and high school ranks annually. Before returning to Chilliwack, Graves served as an Assistant Coach for the UBC Okanagan Heat and the UFV Cascades.
Hill’s decorated basketball lineage extends back to Ontario, where he won a silver medal at the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations Provincial Championships. Following high school, Hill took his talents to SFU, where he played for the men’s basketball team for four years as a guard and small forward throughout the early 1990s