The University of Regina’s women’s basketball team qualified for the 2016 CIS Championship with a 65-59 win over MacEwan on Friday night in a Canada West semifinal at the Physical Activity Complex on the University of Saskatchewan campus.
The Cougars never trailed after going on a 20-4 run in the third quarter which turned a two-point lead for MacEwan into a commanding 14-point advantage for Regina. MacEwan responded with a 14-4 run of its own to get to within four points early in the fourth, but the Cougars were able to pull away down the stretch by holding the Griffins to only three points over a six-minute span in the final quarter.
“I was a little disappointed in our first half. I didn’t think we played particularly well, especially on the offensive side of things,” Cougars head coach Dave Taylor said. “But I liked how we came out in the second half and made some key stops when we needed to. MacEwan was a bit of an unknown for us, and now we’ll prepare for a team that we’ll definitely have some familiarity with.”
The victory ensures the Cougars will scoop up one of Canada West’s two automatic berths to the national tournament, which will be hosted next weekend by the University of New Brunswick. It also sends them to Saturday night’s conference championship game, where they’ll take on the U of S Huskies as the Cougars look for their third Canada West title in program history.
All five starters were key in the win for the Cougars on Friday, with Charlotte Kot and Katie Polischuk leading the way with 15 points each. Alyssia Kajati was just behind them with 14 points and added nine rebounds to fall just short of a double-double, while Kehlsie Crone had nine points and four assists and Sidney Dobner finished with six points, five assists, and a team-leading 10 rebounds.
Sara Hubenig led the Cougars off the bench with seven rebounds in 18 minutes played.
NOTES: The Cougars will compete in the CIS Championship next weekend for the 17th time in program history as they return to the eight-team tournament for the first time since 2013.
(Braden Konschuh/U of R Athletics)