The University of Northern British Columbia has added one of the most lethal shooters in the province, officially announcing the commitment of Team BC guard Dylon Matthews for the 2019-2020 Canada West season.
“Playing post-secondary basketball has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. I remember going to university games, and being so itchy to get on the court. I couldn’t even sit down, I just wanted to run out there and play. This sends shivers down my spine. I can’t wait for the season to start. I want to get out there with everyone.”
Matthews, who has played with the Provincial team the last two years, is a combo guard who has proven to be a potent threat at both ends of the court. He said the decision to join the Timberwolves made perfect sense.
“This is definitely a team on the rise. The last few years you can see them getting better. I want to bring this team, in a new community for me, and really try to push it as one of the main teams in Canada West.”
Matthews visited UNBC in the winter, and was able to witness a Timberwolves home weekend at the Northerh Sport Centre. The six-foot-two athlete, who is set to graduate from Seycove Secondary in June, cites the visit as instrumental in his decision to commit to the green and gold.
“The court here is great, and the facilities are top notch, but I think it is the crowd here that is really special. The crowd is pretty electric. You definitely notice it when they come out of the gates, the crowd really gets into it. I think it fires up the players a lot.”
The native of North Vancouver averaged 21 points, nine assists, seven rebounds, and three steals per game for the Seyhawks.
“I am definitely a shooter, first off. But I like to push the ball, play fast-paced, and get my teammates involved. Make some nice passes, and try to get everyone playing at their highest level. That is the most fun way to play basketball; when everyone is at their peak.”
Timberwolves coach Todd Jordan has had his eye on Matthews for a number of years, and says his newest recruit is the type of player who has the potential to make a major impact on the UNBC program over the next five years.
“We are very excited to add Dylon to our roster. He is a physically strong guard with a good fundamental skill set and experience playing for our provincial team. He had a very good high school career and I am glad his next chapter will continue with our program at UNBC.”
While possessing a frame that is ready-made for the highest level of university sport in Canada, Matthews knows there will be an adjustment from the high school level. His older brother Triston is the leading scorer for the UBC Okanagan Heat, so he is well aware of the level of athletes playing in Canada West.
“I think the physicality and speed on defense is a big change for a lot of high school guys. Being able to guard bigger, faster guys can be difficult, especially because some of these guys are 20, 21, 24 years old. You’re playing against men.”
However, Matthews won’t be completely unfamiliar in his new territory. Timberwolves guard Chris Ross was a Seycove teammate, and their friendship dates back to kindergarten. The two combined to lead the Seyhawks to a 2018 Provincial bronze medal, and the newest TWolf is hopeful his longtime friendship with Ross will allow for a smooth transition – and hopefully, more hardware.
“Going away from home, you always want to have someone you know there. Having Chris there will be a comfort of mine. I am always going to have someone there to talk to, to study with, to get in the gym with. I have known him forever.”
An honour roll student, the 17-year-old will study Sciences at UNBC. He is set to join his new teammates for training camp in August, and is ready to wear the Timberwolf for the next five years.
“The community here is really supportive of the team. I like the culture around the team. I have met all the guys recently, and I love all the guys. I am really looking forward to playing with them and trying to bring this team to another level.”