She has the size of a post and the range of a guard, and now Bella Mesquita is a UNBC Timberwolf. The University of Northern British Columbia’s Women’s Basketball program announced the commitment of the Calgary product today, for the upcoming 2020-2021 Canada West season.
The five-foot-eleven Mesquita visited UNBC’s Prince George campus in January, touring the facilities and meeting coach Sergey Shchepotkin and the current roster of Timberwolves. Due to an injury at the time, she was unable to train with the team, but said the trip was critical in her decision to commit.
Training with Genesis Basketball with coach Eddie Richardson, the seventeen-year-old is a former teammate of TWolves freshman guard Anastasia Soltes, who is also a product of the Genesis program. Mesquita’s all-around game was an asset at the club level, and while she understands the Canada West level is a major step up, she is confident her game will translate to the highest level of university basketball in the country.
Shchepotkin’s program has made the Canada West playoffs for four consecutive seasons, including playoff wins in each of the past two seasons. His newest recruit was on hand for the team’s double-overtime victory over Lethbridge in February, and he is excited to integrate her into a program trending upwards in the conference.
Mesquita is set to graduate from St. Mary’s High School, where she played for the Saints under coach Bill McConkey. That program played in the provincial tournament every year she was on the team, so she has played in high stakes games like she’ll be competing in at the U SPORTS level. That said, the stretch four knows there will be an adjustment period, but cites all the Timberwolves playing with a common goal as an attractive cultural prospect.
At UNBC, the honour roll student plans to pursue a Bachelor of Science, majoring in psychology. She will join her new teammates for training camp in August, and is ready to play the game she loves at the highest level.