Cougars advance to semi-finals at national women’s basketball championship

By Dale Johnson Posted: March 9, 2018 11:30 a.m.

Cougars' win over Laval means they move on to semi-finals against U of S Huskies.
Cougars' win over Laval means they move on to semi-finals against U of S Huskies. Photo courtesy of Arthur Images

The University of Regina women’s basketball team is off to a great start at the national championship tournament underway in Regina.  Playing in front of a packed crowd at the main gym at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport (CKHS), the Cougars won their opening game Thursday evening 76-56 over Laval. Carolina Goncalves led the Cougars in scoring with 15 points. Charlotte Kot and Kyanna Giles each scored 14 points. Earlier in the week, at the national awards banquet to recognize outstanding players, Goncalves was named top rookie in Canada.

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Carolina Goncalves, named top rookie in Canada, led the Cougars in scoring with 15 points in quarter-final victory over Laval. Photo courtesy of Arthur Images.

With the victory, the second-seeded Cougars advance to the semi-finals, and will play their arch-rivals, the University of Saskatchewan Huskies, on Saturday evening at 6:00 p.m. The winner goes on to the championship game on Sunday at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health & Sport.

The Huskies advanced by beating Acadia 72-67.

In the other quarter-finals, the top-seeded Carleton Ravens beat the Calgary Dinos 52-42, and it was McGill over McMaster 55-39. That means Carleton will play McGill in the other semi-final, with the winner meeting either the U of R Cougars or the U of S Huskies for the national title on Sunday. The bronze medal game starts at 2:30 p.m. and the gold medal game gets underway at 5:30 p.m.

The Cougars have won the national title only once before – in 2001 – and Phoebe De Ciman was part of that championship team.

“It was a fabulous experience to win the national championship, but it happened to be at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. This year is a unique opportunity for the Cougars to be able to play in the championship tournament at home,” she says.  

This is the third time in ten years the Cougars have hosted the national championship tournament.

The excellence of the basketball program showed through this year. The Cougars were the top-ranked team in Canada at one point, and the team finished first in the west with 18 wins and two losses. They defeated the U of S Huskies to win the Canada West Championship, its third in program history.