LANGLEY, B.C. – Trinity Western women’s basketball coach Cheryl Jean-Paul will bring in four athletes as part of an exciting 2019 recruiting class, which includes Jayden Gill (Abbotsford, B.C.), Rolande Taylor (Langley), Kailey Reimer (Abbotsford) and Lana Shypit (Winnipeg).
The incoming quartet will help develop the Spartans next generation, as TWU’s women’s basketball team aims to build on an historic three-year run that saw the program earn winning seasons in three consecutive years for the first time ever.
Jayden Gill (Abbotsford)
Gill will come to TWU after graduating from Robert Bateman Secondary this spring. The 5-foot-10 guard averaged 15 points, nine rebounds and 5.5 assists per game in her Grade 12 high school season, while helping lead Robert Bateman to a seventh place finish at the provincial championship.
Both a scorer and a staunch defender, Gill was also a key figure in helping BC’s U17 team to a third-place finish at the 2018 national championship.
“Jayden is indeed a great athlete, but more than that, she has a work ethic and a desire to improve that will make her an outstanding university basketball player,” Jean-Paul said. “She understands that the only way to get better is to keep pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. I witnessed that while coaching Jayden on the U17 BC provincial team last summer. I saw how that experience transformed her perspective of what a competitive training environment should be and how being a leader is helping everyone on your team develop that frame of mind.”
Gill said: “This is a great opportunity to be a part of a great university and an amazing basketball program,” Gill said. “And I am excited to play for Coach Cheryl.”
Dan Village – Robert Bateman Head Coach – added: “Jayden has tremendous upside potential with her athleticism and commitment to always improve. She was a treat to coach and her leadership and passion for the game will be missed at Bateman.”
Rolande Taylor (Langley)
The 5-foot-7 Taylor will join the Spartans after an impressive high school career at nearby at Walnut Grove Secondary. The hard-working guard, who brings an all-around game to the floor, averaged 10 rebounds, six assists and five points per game in her final year at Walnut Grove, while helping her team to second-place finishes at both the 2018 and 2019 provincial championships.
For her efforts in her Grade 12 year, Taylor was recognized individually by being recently named the BC Sports Hub “Top Gritty Player” at the provincial championships.
“Rolande is a culture carrier, a great teammate, and someone who can be the glue, which is what every program needs,” Jean-Paul said. “She lets her actions speak for herself and supports others without taking away from what they are doing or from what she is striving for. Ro came to our April camp last year and I challenged her to be the best guard rebounder in the province for her Grade 12 year. It was so much fun watching her against much taller opponents and winning the small battles. She didn’t back down from anyone. That drive and determination will serve her well at this level and our team will benefit from her desire to grow and understand her faith and identity.”
Juanita Rowell – Walnut Grove Secondary Head Coach – said: “Rolande enters TWU as player with exceptional leadership and offensive skills that will allow her to be an immediate impact player. She is a high character young woman and a fierce competitor who led our team in rebounding.”
Taylor, who played club basketball for the Vancouver Sports Club, said: “I am thrilled to be coming to Trinity Western. I’m excited to receive a Christian university education while getting to play on an amazing woman’s basketball team with an incredible coach and a great group of girls.”
Kailey Reimer (Abbotsford)
Reimer is a dynamic guard who comes to TWU after helping lead MEI last year with 14.6 points per game and 43 per cent shooting from the field.
The 5-foot-10 Reimer, who played her club basketball with the 3D Basketball Academy, joins a pair of familiar faces at TWU, as she follows in the footsteps of both her cousin – Spartans men’s basketball star-in-the-making Isaiah Reimer (Abbotsford) – and her former teammate – burgeoning women’s basketball star Nicola Peters (Abbotsford).
“Kailey is long and athletic and those qualities, along with her ability to move off-ball, will benefit our program over the next several years,” Jean-Paul said. “As she spends more time with our program and gets stronger and more comfortable with the university tempo, she will show what her potential has been revealing – an athletic scorer who can make things happen. Kailey understands the importance faith plays in our culture and how we want new athletes to continue spurring us on to discover who we are as a program, and I think that will be a big piece of her influence on her recruiting class. Kailey reminds us of Nicola Peters in that although she was under the radar coming out of high school, she is getting better because her commitment to lifting and developing her basketball skills has been unwavering.”
Reimer said: “I’m excited to be a part of the basketball program and at the same time, receive an education where I can share my faith with those around me.”
Lana Shypit (Winnipeg)
Shypit will arrive at TWU from the Prairies after putting together an outstanding career in Winnipeg with both her high school team – Glenlawn Collegiate – and with Team Manitoba.
As a 5-foot-9 wing, Shypit averaged 23 points, eight rebounds and four assists per game in her Grade 12 season. She helped Glenlawn Collegiate to the semifinals at the provincial AAAA championships in both 2018 and 2019. With Team Manitoba, she earned a bronze medal at the 2017 Canada Games, while helping her team to a fourth-place finish at the national championship in 2016 and a fifth-place finish in 2018.
“Lana is a competitor and we are excited to bring her court vision and ability to create into our program. She is a committed athlete who will take everything she learns and respond with hard work. Every time I see her on court she is better than the last, and her teammates will benefit from that approach. Having just graduated 3 major scoring threats, we are excited to bring in athletes who will learn quickly. As Sarah Buckingham developed over her career, we see a lot of similarities between the two. Playmaker into primary scoring threat and what makes a player like that dangerous is their ability to do both well.”
Bryan Kornberger – Glenlawn Collegiate Head Coach – said: “Lana is one of the finest people and players to ever come through the Glenlawn basketball program. As an elected captain, she treated her teammates and opponents as she would like to be treated herself. On the court, she had the uncanny ability to play her best in the biggest moments. Lana will be an amazing addition to the Trinity Western family.”
Shypit, who also played club basketball at the Manitoba Centre for Performance, said: “I connected with Coach Cheryl as soon as I met her. I loved the campus and all the people I met when I visited TWU. I really like the Complete Champion Approach™. Also, the winters will be nicer than in Winnipeg.”
About Spartan Athletics
As official members of U SPORTS, the Spartans currently compete in 10 sports in the Canada West conference, including women’s and men’s soccer, volleyball, basketball, cross country and track & field. TWU also competes in the British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League (BCIHL) in men’s hockey. Since TWU entered U SPORTS in 1999, the Spartans have won 12 U SPORTS team championships, 27 Canada West team championships and two BCIHL championships.