Just eight days after battling it out for the Canada West title at the CKHS, the University of Regina Cougars and University of Saskatchewan Huskies women’s basketball team will renew their rivalry on the hardwood Saturday.
Both teams emerged victorious in national quarter-finals as the USports Women’s Basketball Championship opened up setting up a semi-final game between the two on Saturday night.
The Cougars beat Laval 76-56 to move into the final four which was something which came as a relief to Head Coach Dave Taylor.
“Laval was a very good team and I didn’t really think they were a 7 seed.” Taylor said. Winning on the first night was something we haven’t done in a while. In fact, we haven’t won a first round game since the last time we played here in 2013.
Carolina Goncalves led the Regina attack as the USports rookie of the year had 15 points followed by Kyanna Giles and Charlotte Kot with 14 apiece as the Cougars, who went into the nationals as the number two ranked team in Canada, showed off their balanced attack again.
“Our balance really showed in the first half when Kyanna got a couple of fouls, but we always had someone him hit the big shot whether it be Carolina or Michaela (Kleisinger) or someone else, we got the shot when we needed it.
Kleisinger had a 10 point evening. The 3rd year guard was appreciative of the big crowd on Thursday because of the energy it gives them. She says it resembled the win over the Huskies last weekend.
“The game last weekend was honestly preparation for tonight because we knew what to expect.” Kleisinger said. “The basketball community in Regina is amazing. It was so great to see everyone out there.
As for the Huskies, they came back to beat Acadia 72-67. At one point, the Huskies were down 15 in the first half, but they came back to close the deficit to three at the half before outscoring them 36-28 in the second half to win the game and set up the all-Saskatchewan semi-final. Summer Masikewich led the Huskies in scoring with 25.
In other games, top-ranked Carleton beat Calgary 52-42 and McGill knocked off McMaster 55-39. Carleton will meet McGill, who are the defending national champs in the other semi-final on Saturday. That game will start at 2 with the Cougars-Huskies showdown beginning at 6. The winners meet Sunday in the national final.