Sports Information Director
(Notre Dame, Ind.) The Holy Cross department of athletics is pleased to announce that Yama Kader (Mission Viejo, Cali.) is set to join the Afghanistan National team this upcoming may to participate in the FIBA Qualifying Cup.
"I'm very fortunate to have the opportunity to play for the country where my parents are from," stated Kader. "Now I'm not only playing for a school, but our team is playing to represent Afghanistan."
Kader most recently wrapped up his senior year with the Saints where he finished second all-time in scoring. In just two seasons of action with the Saints, Kader amassed 967 career points. On top of ranking second all-time in scoring, Kader also set school records in three-pointers made in a career (139), three-pointers made in a game (9) and most points in a single game (44).
A member of the Afghanistan National Reserves team in 2010, Kader decided to focus on receiving a collegiate scholarship after completing two seasons at Santa Ana College. Following his two years at Santa Ana College, Kader received a scholarship to play for the Saints and for recently retired head coach Bob Schermerhorn.
"Coach Horn taught me a lot," continued Kader. "He helped strengthen my mentality of putting in the work necessary to be the best. I knew I made the right decision to come to Holy Cross and play for such a respected coach."
A team filled with former Division I athletes, including their head coach, Mamo Rafiq, the Afghan National team will return to tournament play this May after an unfortunate circumstance with a lack of funding that led to the team not being able to compete for a berth in the 2012 Olympics.
Kader now looks to continue his mark with the Afghan National team in hopes of reaching the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship in the Philippines.
"I'm very humbled for this opportunity, and extremely motivated to continue playing the game I love," Kader said. "With training camp right around the corner, I'm looking forward to getting back on the court and competing."
Kader will head to training camp on May 8th prior to heading to India for the FIBA Qualifying Cup. If Afghanistan were to win the Qualifying Cup, they would then head to the FIBA Asia games in the Philippines.
Where might this opportunity lead Kader when it's all said and done?
"I'm hopeful to continue my basketball career after this experience," continued Kader. "My ultimate goal is to get an opportunity to play overseas."
When asked if it was all worth it; traveling across the country to go to school in Indiana, far away from the year round sunshine and nice weather, Kader's response was a simple one: yes.
"As a basketball player, you hear of all the talk about Indiana being the MECCA of basketball, but don't really believe it until you're there playing in it," Kader said. "The fans bleed their allegiance to their favorite teams and it's truly an amazing thing to see. I had a great experience playing here and will forever be grateful for the opportunity to be a part of it."
Yama Kader leaves Holy Cross with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English as well as being a key member of the two most successful seasons in Holy Cross College men's basketball. Over his two years, the program won 28 games, including back-to-back Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) post-season games.
On behalf of Holy Cross College athletics, we'd like to congratulate Yama on all of his accomplishments while at Holy Cross. His presence both on and of the court will be greatly missed, and forever remembered. We wish you nothing but success in all areas of life as you continue your journey. Thanks for the memories number 12!