BK Valmiera, named Valmiera Ordo for sponsorships reasons, was a professional basketball club based in Valmiera, Latvia, playing in the Latvian Basketball League and Baltic Basketball League. In the 2015-2016 season finals, Valmiera Ordo won its first and only national championship, beating VEF Rīga in a seven-game series. Valmiera is a three-time LBL bronze medal winner, attaining the distinction in 2003, 2005, and 2013, with coach Varis Krūmiņš

Valmiera Ordo
Valmiera Ordo logo
LeaguesLBL
Baltic League
Founded2001; 19 years ago (2001)
ArenaVidzeme Olympic Center
Capacity1500
LocationValmiera, Latvia
Team colorsGreen, White
              
PresidentIvars Rudzītis
Team managerMārtiņš Bērziņš
Head coachKristaps Valters
Championships1 Latvian league
Websitebkvalmiera.lv
Former logo of BK Valmiera

Valmiera is one of the main basketball centers in Latvia, providing talent for Latvian national teams, such as Dairis Bertāns, Dāvis Bertāns, Rolands Šmits, and Jānis Bērziņš.

HistoryEdit

The club was founded in 2001, but in the period prior there was a Valmiera team known as SK Valmiera, which is considered a precursor of this team. Also, the team has also been known by the names Valmiera-Rūjiena, Valmieras Piens, and Valmiera/Lāčplēša. The current Valmiera team is a three-time Latvian Basketball League bronze medal winner.

2015–16 season: Latvian league championshipEdit

Before the start of the season, BK Valmiera included the sponsor's name in the team's name, becoming Valmiera/Ordo. Head coach Ainars Zvirgzdins returned after a three-year absence. Hometown favorite Jānis Kaufmanis returned to the squad after a year in Spain. The biggest additions were Artūrs Bērziņš, sharpshooter Mārtiņš Laksa, and 2015 EuroBasket participant Haralds Kārlis.

The Latvian Basketball League season began on 30 September with Valmiera/Ordo beating reigning champions VEF Rīga on the road 79–75. Valmiera kept the winning streak alive for seven games before losing their first game, against BK Ventspils on 7 November by a score of 74–82 in an away game. Before that, on 21 October, the team took a chance on picking up veteran guard Armands Šķēle, giving him the opportunity to play professional basketball for the first time together with his younger brother Aigars Šķēle. Despite being at the top of the league in November and December, the team struggled. Lithuanian point guard Vytenis Čižauskas left the team because of limited minutes given by the coach. For the next couple of weeks, Gatis Melderis took command of the coaching position. The situation was difficult due to injuries. On 26 December, in Liepāja, Valmiera/Ordo could field only an eight-player roster, but in the 44th game, the second team captain Haralds Kārlis injured his ACL, which took him out of basketball activities for a full year. Valmiera/Ordo lost that game 87–91.

After New Year's came, more changes were made with the team. In the center position, Valmiera/Ordo added Lauris Blaus. On 15 January, Roberts Štelmahers became the third head coach of the team in the same season. Štelmahers' debut came a day later, against his former team BK Ventspils. In their home court, Valmiera/Ordo celebrated an 87-83 victory. In the next months, Valmiera added victories in the tournament table and incorporated veteran forward Akselis Vairogs and point guard Kwamain Mitchell into the team's roster.

In March, the Baltic Basketball League deciding games took place. During the regular season, Valmiera/Ordo finished with a record of 9–3 and second place in group A. At the playoffs stage, Valmiera defeated Estonian BC Tallinna Kalev (171–134) and Lithuanian BC Pieno žvaigždės (161–149). Before the semi-finals, the team's goal was to win a medal in the Baltic league competition for the first time in club's history but it did not come to pass. In the semi-finals, Valmiera was forced to admit University of Tartu's superiority (132–143). In the bronze series against BC Lietkabelis Valmiera could not hold on to the first-game 16 point lead, suffering a heartbreaking defeat in a two-game summary of 154–160.

Meanwhile in the Latvian league, Valmiera/Ordo finished the regular season with a 13 game winning streak, beating its main rivals in the top of the tournament's table. Finishing regular season with 30–6, Valmiera took the top spot on end table and first seed in the playoffs. In the semifinals, Valmiera/Ordo rolled over Liepāja/Triobet winning the series 3–0. Valmiera's opponent in the championship finals was the four-time champions and reigning Latvian trophy holders VEF Rīga. The finals began on 21 March. Valmiera/Ordo lost the first game at home with a score of 59–70, but in the second match Valmiera took the victory 73–71. On the road Valmiera went with a draw 1–1. In the Arēna Rīga, Valmiera took Game 3 with a score of 79–70, but in Game 4 VEF Rīga aligned series result 2–2 (with a score of 77–82). The fifth game, in 27 March came back to Valmiera. The visitors managed to pull away the victory, putting themselves one victory away from the title (76–85). But Valmiera/Ordo was not ready to surrender. In Game-6 Valmiera/Ordo took away the victory 82–77. In the final game on March 31, Valmiera/Ordo pleased the crowd at a sold-out home game by securing the victory 79–70. Taking the series with a win of 4–3[1] Valmiera/Ordo celebrated its first National title in Valmiera city sports history.

LBL finals MVP award winner was Artūrs Bērziņš (season stats: 9.8 ppg, 4,1 rpg). Between team leaders was Aigars Šķēle (10.5 ppg, 4.0 asp), Mārtiņš Laksa (10.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg), Armands Šķēle (9.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg) and Jānis Kaufmanis (9.4 ppg).

Valmiera/Ordo championships depth chartEdit

Pos. Starting 5 Bench 1 Reserve
C Lauris Blaus Dāvis Rozītis Viktors Iļjins
PF Artūrs Bērziņš Ervīns Jonāts
SF Mārtiņš Laksa Mārtiņš Vīņauds Haralds Kārlis
SG Armands Šķēle Jānis Kaufmanis
PG Kwamain Mitchell Aigars Šķēle Raimonds Gabrāns

After the championshipEdit

After winning the Latvian championship, Valmiera/Ordo declined the option to play in the Basketball Champions League. Lead by head coach Uvis Helmanis the team's squad was still solid. The team's top scorers were Janis Kaufmanis, Mārtiņš Laksa and Artūrs Bērziņš. At the end of the season, one of the EuroLeague stars, D'or Fischer, was added to the team's roster. But things did not go Valmiera's way. In the 2016–17 Baltic Basketball League Valmiera/Ordo lost in the quarterfinals, while in the 2016–17 Latvian Basketball League the team lost in the bronze medal series. The team struggled financially during the last months of the season, which affected it in the upcoming season.

In the 2017–18 Latvian Basketball League the team finished in last position. The new head coach Kristaps Valters had only three proven players—Janis Kaufmanis, Viktors Iļjins and Edmunds Elksnis. The rest of the team was very young and the team lost most of its games, taking last position in the national championship and not making the 2017–18 Baltic Basketball League playoff tournament.

After the season, the club resigned to continue playing in the top tier. [2]

RosterEdit

Retired numbersEdit

BK Valmiera retired numbers
No. Player Position Tenure Ceremony date
8   Dainis Bertāns C 1992–2004 08/01/2014

Current rosterEdit

Valmiera Ordo roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Nat. Name Ht. Wt. Age
G 3   Elksnis, Edmunds 1.87 m (6 ft 2 in) 90 kg (198 lb) 29 – (1990-11-19)19 November 1990
SG 5   Kaufmanis, Jānis 1.86 m (6 ft 1 in) 88 kg (194 lb) 30 – (1989-10-03)3 October 1989
PF 10   Miška, Anrijs 2.05 m (6 ft 9 in) 91 kg (201 lb) 20 – (2000-01-14)14 January 2000
SG 13   Vīksne, Dāvids 1.94 m (6 ft 4 in) 81 kg (179 lb) 19 – (2000-11-07)7 November 2000
C 17   Iļjins, Viktors 2.15 m (7 ft 1 in) 116 kg (256 lb) 28 – (1991-07-17)17 July 1991
C 22   Adiņš, Rihards 2.04 m (6 ft 8 in) 106 kg (234 lb) 25 – (1994-04-09)9 April 1994
SG 25   Hāzners, Eduards 1.94 m (6 ft 4 in) 88 kg (194 lb) 22 – (1997-12-28)28 December 1997
G 27   Bērziņš, Ojārs 1.91 m (6 ft 3 in) 84 kg (185 lb) 19 – (2001-01-26)26 January 2001
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  •   Injured

Updated: April 1, 2017

Season by seasonEdit

Season Latvian League Pos. Baltic League European competitions
2000–01 LBL 7th
2001–02 LBL 6th
2002–03 LBL 3rd
2003–04 LBL 4th 4 FIBA Europe Cup
CSF
6–5
2004–05 LBL 3rd Elite Division 8th
2005–06 LBL 5th Elite Division 7th
2006–07 LBL 5th Elite Division 7th
2007–08 LBL 5th Elite Division 9th
2008–09 LBL 5th Elite Division 9th
2009–10 LBL 4th Elite Division 8th
2010–11 LBL 5th Elite Division 14th
2011–12 LBL 5th Challenge Cup 5th
2012–13 LBL 3rd Last 16
2013–14 LBL 6th Round of 16
2014–15 LBL 7th Round of 16
2015–16 LBL 1st Fourth place
2016–17 LBL 4th Quarterfinals
2017–18 LBL 9th Group Stage 9th

Notable playersEdit

Notable coachesEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit