Ilario Enrico "Eli" Pasquale (August 24, 1960 – November 4, 2019) was a Canadian basketball player. A 6-foot, 1-inch point guard, he led the Canadian national men's basketball team during two Olympic Games, three FIBA World Championships, and two Pan American Games.[1]

Eli Pasquale
Medal record
Representing  Canada
Universiade
Gold medal – first place 1983 Edmonton National team
Bronze medal – third place 1985 Kobe National team

Born in Sudbury, Pasquale grew up in Gatchell, Ontario, a predominantly Italian neighbourhood of Sudbury. He played his first organized basketball in Grade 8 on his school team, St. Francis School. By grade 10, Pasquale's height was a mere 5 feet, 3 inches.

Pasquale starred at the University of Victoria, leading the Vikings to five straight CIAU championships.[1] He stands as the school's all-time leading scorer, was a three-time CIAU all-star, and has had his jersey number 13 retired. He was drafted by the Seattle SuperSonics 106th overall in the fifth round of the 1984 NBA Draft and played in 3 exhibition games for the team before being released.[1] He played in the Amateur Athletic Union for Seattle and the Los Angeles Summer Pro League in 1985 and earned a try-out with the Chicago Bulls, but failed to make the club. He then played professionally in Argentina in 1986, West Germany in 1989, and Switzerland in 1990.

Pasquale was a member of the Canadian national team at various levels over 15 years. He led the Canadians to a fourth-place finish at the 1984 Summer Olympics and a sixth-place finish at the 1982 FIBA World Championship. He was also a prominent member of 1983 World University Games team that won the gold medal by defeating in the semi-finals the United States led by Charles Barkley and Karl Malone and in the finals Yugoslavia led by Dražen Petrović.[1]

At age 37, he returned to national team play for the 1997 Tournament of the Americas, after a five-year absence, to help the Canadians qualify for the 1998 FIBA World Championship.[1] However, he did not play in the World Championship.

Pasquale was inducted into the Canadian Basketball Hall of Fame in 2003[1] and the BC Sports Hall of Fame in 2004. For the past 20 plus years he has operated Eli Pasquale Sports Group, a business that operates basketball camps for youths. He died on November 4, 2019 from cancer in Victoria, British Columbia.[1][2]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Chidley-Hill, John (6 November 2019). "Eli Pasquale, Olympian and Canadian Basketball Hall of Famer, dies at 59". CBC Sports. The Canadian Press. Retrieved 6 November 2019.
  2. ^ [1]

SourcesEdit