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Published by Steven Loung on June 1, 2010
Stefan Cvrkalj (pronounced: sver-ky) has recently Confirmed that he will be coming back to Bluevale for a fifth year so he may pursue his goal of playing Division 1 basketball in the United States.
“My recruiting started pretty late this year,” Cvrkalj said. “It started in January [and] February and by that time it was too late for [American] colleges to sign for 2010.”
After realizing the dilemma he was in, Cvrkalj was left with a choice between staying in Canada to play CIS basketball, or to pursue his original plan to play Division 1 NCAA basketball.
“As more time went by I realized that I had a much greater desire to play Division 1 at this point,” Cvrkalj said. “So that’s when I decided for sure that I wanted to stay for another year so I can, firstly, sign somewhere, and also, it’ll give me time to prepare physically, mentally and technique-wise so I can compete at that level.”
A level that that the 6-foot-4 senior seems close to being at judging by the interest shown in him by different schools so far.
“Every month, more and more schools have become more interested in me so that is making my decision to stay [for a fifth year] a lot easier because it shows that I definitely can play at that level ,” Cvrkalj said.
The returning Bluevale Knight has already made unofficial visits to a couple of Patriot League schools in Bucknell and Lafayette, while also receiving interest from Lehigh, UPenn, Stanford and Virginia . He is targeting the Patriot League, as well as the Ivy League because academics are just as important to him as athletics.
“I’m looking for a good academic school, as well as a good basketball school so I can have both options on hand,” Cvrkalj said. “Both Ivy League and Patriot League have excellent academic schools and they’re also mid-major Division 1 schools so that’s like the perfect spot for me I think.”
Of course, none of this would be possible unless Cvrkalj was not a talented player, and judging by his list of accomplishments, he can definitely play.
This year he was named the Waterloo County Secondary School Athletic Association (WCSSAA) Senior Boys Basketball MVP where he averaged 22.6 PPG including six games where he scored 30, and two of them where he flirted with 40 points recording 39 against Waterloo Collegiate Institute and St. Theresa’s of Midland.
He was also able to lead his team to a WCSSAA and Central Western Ontario Secondary School Association (CWOSSA) title. The championships were especially significant because they were the first WCSSAA and CWOSSA basketball titles in school history, and they also earned the school’s first OFSAA basketball berth.
Outside of school, Cvrkalj has been improving his game with his club team, the Toronto Five-O, and during the summer he participates in a training camp with a club team in Serbia called Sportkey which is head up by Jamko Lukovski (pronounced: yom-ko lu-kov-skee) who was a former professional European player during the 1960s and 1970s.
Cvrkalj is definitely a talent to watch for, and with his return to Bluevale, his continued desire to improve his game and the interest shown in him already from NCAA Division 1 schools, his dream of playing Division 1 basketball is well on its way to becoming a reality.