Wednesday, January 23, 2013
THIS WEEK IN COUGAR ATHLETICS
Women's Basketball (CIS Ranking: No. 3) – The Cougars (12-2) fell one spot in the CIS Top Ten after a road split last weekend, being edged 61-58 by No. 9-ranked Victoria on Friday before recovering for a 63-53 win over No. 5 UBC on Saturday. The Cougars were passed by Windsor and Saint Mary's – both undefeated in conference play – but jumped ahead of Fraser Valley to end up in the No. 3 spot. The Cougars are back home this weekend for a pair of games against Prairie Division rival Alberta on Friday and Saturday at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport (6:15 p.m.).
Men's Basketball – The Cougars (5-9) lost twice during their West Coast road swing, falling 79-55 to Victoria on Friday and playing No. 2-ranked UBC tough in a 75-65 loss on Saturday. Paul Gareau led the team offensively during the trip, going 18-for-23 from the field and ending up with a team-high 39 points over the two games. In town this weekend is No. 4-ranked Alberta, which comes in boasting a Prairie Division-leading 12-2 record. Tip-off at the CKHS is scheduled for 8 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday.
Men's Hockey – The Cougars (11-9-2) put together a road sweep over Mount Royal last weekend to lock up their first Canada West postseason spot since 2009. Lucas Gore had a 31-save shutout in Friday's 3-0 win, and Ward Szucki's hat trick powered the Cougars to a 6-5 victory on Saturday. The Cougars host No. 5-ranked Saskatchewan (15-7-0) at The Co-operators Centre on Friday night (7 p.m.) before the teams finish off the home-and-home on Saturday night in Saskatoon.
Women's Hockey (CIS Ranking: No. 10) – The Cougars (14-7-1) clinched a playoff berth after taking three out of a possible four points against Mount Royal at The Co-operators Centre, winning 5-3 on Friday and losing 2-1 in overtime on Saturday. The third-place Cougars continue to jockey for position in the Canada West standings this weekend, as they'll take on Saskatchewan in a home-and-home series that will see the teams open up in Saskatoon on Friday night before playing in Regina on Saturday (7 p.m.).
Women's Volleyball – The Cougars (3-13) were defeated twice by Mount Royal at home last weekend, losing in four sets on Friday night and in straight sets on Saturday. Up next for the U of R is a road trip to Winnipeg, as the Cougars will meet the University of Manitoba (7-9) on Saturday and Sunday afternoon. After this weekend, the Cougars will only have four matches remaining on the Canada West schedule.
Men's Volleyball – The Cougars fell to 2-14 on the season after a pair of losses to Mount Royal last weekend, dropping a five-set heartbreaker on Friday and falling in straight sets on Saturday. The Cougars head east this weekend to square off with No. 4-ranked Manitoba (8-6) on Saturday and Sunday with first serve scheduled for 3 p.m. both afternoons.
Track & Field (Women's CIS Ranking: No. 7 / Men's CIS Ranking: No. 10) – Three school records were broken as the Cougars competed at the Golden Bear Open over the weekend. Two of the records were courtesy of distance coach Graeme McMaster's group, as Karissa LePage bettered her own U of R record in the 3000-metre run and Matt Johnson broke a record in the 1500-metre run which had stood since 2004. Chris Pickering also rewrote the record book, as his throw of 17.87 metres in the shot put broke his own 2011 school mark of 17.33 metres. Pickering becomes the first Canada West athlete to hit the CIS standard in the event and is also the No. 2-ranked shot putter in the nation. The Cougars will compete in the Sled Dog Meet on Friday and Saturday in Saskatoon.
Women's Wrestling (CIS Ranking: No. 3) – Lisa McKibben and Jasmine Slinn led the Cougars with third-place finishes over the weekend at the Guelph Open. Slinn was 4-1 at 48 kg, while McKibben was 3-1 at 72 kg. The team returns to the mats this weekend at the Wesmen Invitational, which will be hosted by the University of Winnipeg on Friday and Saturday.
Men's Wrestling (CIS Ranking: No. 7) – The Cougars were edged 27-21 by Dickinson State in a dual on Friday and finished in sixth place in the overall standings at the Tyler Plummer Classic in Dickinson, N.D. on Saturday. Steven Schneider, Mark Ballon, Shaun Trotman, Jacob Luczak, and John Lendvoy all won their dual matches for the Cougars on Friday, while Luczak and Schneider led the U of R with third-place finishes in tournament action. The Cougars are in preparation for the Canada West Championships, which will be hosted by the University of Alberta in mid-February.
(Courtest U of R Athletics)