Michel Belanger

OTTAWA (CIS) – Canadian Interuniversity Sport announced Thursday that the University of Ottawa and University of Saskatchewan have been selected as hosts of the 2012 CIS women’s basketball East and West regional tournaments, respectively.

After experimenting with three Round 1 events last winter in the first year of its new women’s basketball championship model, CIS is moving to a two-tournament format this season as the final qualifying phase for the Final Eight.

“The University of Saskatchewan has hosted a number of outstanding CIS championships over the years, so we are delighted they will host the Round 1 Regional in the PAC – a great venue for basketball. The Huskies are also coming off the best season in team history with an appearance in last year’s CIS final,” said Marg McGregor, chief executive officer of CIS. “University of Ottawa’s women’s basketball program is enjoying a great year with many exciting players on their roster. Fans in Ottawa will be treated to some exciting basketball to determine the final berth to the Final Eight.”

The 2012 Final Eight is set for March 17 to 19 at the University of Calgary. Joining the host Dinos at the national championship will be the four conference champions, the two Round 1 winners, as well as the recipient of an at-large berth.

The East and West Regionals will take place the previous weekend, on March 9-10, with semifinals on Friday and finals on Saturday.

Ottawa will host the OUA and AUS finalists as well as the Canada West bronze medallists, while Saskatchewan will host the Canada West and RSEQ runner-ups and OUA third-place-finishers.

Should Ottawa and/or Saskatchewan finish first, second or third at their respective conference championship, the following scenarios would apply for the regional tournaments, as per the CIS playing regulations:

A) If the Host of a Round 1 Regional is a Sport Conference Champion, their berth to the Final 8 is protected, however, they are required to play in the Round 1 Regional for seeding purposes in the W-Final 8. If the Round 1 Regional Host goes on to win the Round 1 Regional, the Round 1 Regional champion berth to the Final 8 shall be assigned to the Round 1 Regional finalist.

B) If the Host of a Round 1 Regional finishes their Sport Conference playoffs in a position that would earn them a spot in a Round 1 Regional (OUA 2 or 3, CW 2 or 3), the next place team from that Sport Conference shall be given a spot in the Round 1 Regional. The list of competitors would be adjusted such that the newly added team is seeded below other teams from their Sport Conference.

At the December break, Saskatchewan and Ottawa are ranked fifth and ninth in the CIS Top 10. The Huskies (4-3) are currently in fourth place in Canada West’s East division, while the Gee-Gees (6-2) top the OUA East standings.

Last winter, St. Francis Xavier (Central), Wilfrid Laurier (West) and Toronto (East) won the regional tournaments before placing fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively, at the Final Eight. StFX and Toronto were coming off bronze-medal finishes in the AUS and OUA, while Laurier had taken fourth place in the Ontario playoffs.

“Over the years Andy Sparks and his staff have developed a program that competes among the top CIS teams. uOttawa is proud to showcase our strong women’s basketball program and our great student-athletes,” said Luc Gélineau, University of Ottawa Director of Sports Services. “It will also be an exciting and unique opportunity for uOttawa to engage the members of the basketball community in the Ottawa and Outaouais region, who we know are passionate about the sport.”

“Our entire team is very honoured and grateful for the opportunity to host the CIS West Regional tournament this March,” said Huskies head coach Lisa Thomaidis. “We are very fortunate to have such strong support from the UofS and Saskatoon community for women’s basketball, and I anticipate the West Regional will be an amazing experience for all of the teams that will be competing.”


EAST REGIONAL at University of Ottawa

Friday, March 9

18:00 Semifinal #1: OUA 2 vs. AUS 2

20:00 Semifinal #2: CWUAA 3 vs. Ottawa

Saturday, March 10

18:00 Final

WEST REGIONAL at University of Saskatchewan

Friday, March 9

18:15 Semifinal #1: OUA 3 vs. Saskatchewan

20:00 Semifinal #2: CWUAA 2 vs. RSEQ 2

Saturday, March 10

19:00 Final

CIS FINAL EIGHT at University of Calgary

Saturday, March 17

12:00 Quarter-final #1

14:00 Quarter-final #2

17:00 Quarter-final #3

19:00 Quarter-final #4

Sunday, March 18

12:00 Consolation #1

14:00 Consolation #2

17:00 Semifinal #3

19:00 Semifinal #4

Monday, March 19

TBD Fifth Place

TBD Bronze Medal

TBD Final