Skip to content

Olympic basketball coach returns to Salmon Arm to give back to young athletes

Former Jewel and Canadian women’s basketball coach, along with assistant coach, to put on camp
London-bound: Team doctor Doug Richards snaps a photo of happy Team Canada women’s basketball coach Allison McNeill after the team defeated Japan to qualify for the Olympics. (File)

Basketball players in Salmon Arm will be coached by Canada’s best, come the end of April.

Here’s how she can be described. Former Salmon Arm Jewel. Legendary coach of the Simon Fraser University (SFU) team with an acclaimed record over a decade that included 11 trips to the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) championships. Coach of the Canadian women’s team for a decade. Coach of the Canadian women’s team who led the squad to Canada’s best-ever result – a quarter-final placing at the 2012 London Olympics that included defeating host England and an upset over Brazil. SFU Hall of Famer. BC Sports Hall of Famer.

These are some of the milestones that mark the storied basketball career of Allison McNeill. McNeill and her spouse Mike, also a successful high-level basketball player and coach who was inducted into the Basketball BC Hall of Fame, will be coaching a Salmon Arm Basketball Camp on April 28 and 29.

Tekki Brown-Hryniw, athletic director and senior girls basketball coach at Salmon Arm Secondary, explained that she grew up in Salmon Arm and was recruited to play for Allison (and Mike) at Simon Fraser University, along with many other Jewels alumni over the years.

“When I reached out to Allison in February, she said she would be happy to offer a camp that both she and her husband would run as a way of giving back to the community of Salmon Arm, where her name is on the wall as an Olympian (head coach of the women’s national team), and as a graduate of our high school,” said Brown-Hryniw.

“I am excited because it is an opportunity for all our local coaches to gain some knowledge and ideas from a very successful coach who has dedicated most of her life to the game.”

Brown-Hryniw said the hope is to continue to generate momentum and excitement at the lower grade levels in order to build the quality of programs by getting more kids playing and loving the game of basketball.

The camp will include two sessions for grades 4 to 7 (U13) students – 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, April 28 and 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 29.

For the older students, grades 8 to 11 (U18), sessions will run 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, 9 to 12 p.m. Saturday, also with a scrimmage on Saturday from 7 to 9 p.m. The cost of the camp is $75.

To pay and sign-up, e-transfer the fee to and include ‘Bball Camp,’ full name and age group: U13 or U18. The camp will take place at Salmon Arm Secondary Sullivan.

Read more: Former Jewel off to Olympics

Read more: Post-Olympic letdown becomes reality

Read more: Keeping the legacy alive
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our daily newsletter.
Allison McNeill, who is coming to Salmon Arm April 28 and 29 with her spouse Mike to put on a basketball camp for local students, coaches the Canadian Women’s Team in this photo. (Photo contributed)

Martha Wickett

About the Author: Martha Wickett

came to Salmon Arm in May of 2004 to work at the Observer. I was looking for a change from the hustle and bustle of the Lower Mainland, where I had spent more than a decade working in community newspapers.
Read more