Cascades and Cougars battle for last playoff spot.
By: Christine Leathem. The University of the Fraser Valley Cascades women’s basketball team (8-6, third in the division) is two wins away from the postseason and will host the Mount Royal University Cougars (5-9, fourth in the division) this weekend, who are also fighting for the third and final Explorer Division spot in the playoffs.
Mount Royal is three games behind UFV in the standings and a sweep this weekend will help push them toward the last playoff spot. The Cougars have the tougher remaining schedule as they round out the season with dates against the top three squads in the division – the Cascades this weekend, then at first-place Thompson Rivers (13-1) before closing the season against the MacEwan Griffins (10-4). On the other hand, UFV will battle the struggling UNBC Timberwolves (2-12) before hosting powerhouse Thompson Rivers, who have long clinched their trip to the postseason, for the regular season finale.
The last time the Cascades and the Cougars met was just three weeks ago when UFV travelled to MRU. The Cascades took both victories (85-58 and 81-67) with help from fifth-year centre, Sarah Wierks.
Wierks put up two double-doubles with a total of 44 points and 29 rebounds. She has jumped to second place on Canada West’s all-time rebounding list (945) and was just named conference First Star for the second time this year, the first time a female has been given the honour twice this season. She currently leads the entire CIS in rebounds per game with 14.5, which currently ties her with Jodi Evans (Calgary Dinos, 1990-91) for the highest average over the course of a single season in Canada West history.
Jayla Verney of the Cougars put up a game-high 25 points against the Cascades last January 10 and leads her team in points per game with 15.1. She added another 24 points in the Cougars’ two-game series this past weekend against UNBC while her teammate Desiree Oakley added 34.
The first game will be played on Saturday at 6:00 pm MST and the second on Sunday at 3:00 pm MST, both at the Envision Athletic Centre. Both games will be webcasted live on CanadaWest.TV.
About Canada West Universities Athletic Association
Canada West is the premier athletic conference in the country and is home to champion student-athletes that excel on the field, in the classroom and in their communities. As the winningest conference in the CIS with over 100 national championships in the past decade, Canada West and its 17 member institutions commit to a student-athlete experience where competitive excellence, scholarship and sportsmanship equally contribute into molding our future professional athletes and leaders. Find out more by logging on CanadaWest.org and following @CWUAA on Twitter.