The formula is simple: win one of your two remaining games and you qualify for the playoffs.
Completing the task, however, is more complicated, as the University of Victoria Vikes women’s basketball team (8-8) needs to defeat the nationally No. 4 ranked UBC Thunderbirds (13-3) in one of two remaining games over the next two weekends.
On Friday night, UVic travels to face UBC at the War Memorial Gymnasium in Vancouver at 6 p.m. and then hosts UBC at McKinnon Gymnasium Feb. 17 at 6 p.m. on Shoot For The Cure night – an annual basketball fund-raiser for breast cancer research and an overall awareness evening.
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Even if Trinity Western (4th place, 8-9) and Thompson Rivers (5th place, 7-9) win out to finish at 9-9 respectively, the Vikes would still earn the tiebreaker against both teams with one more victory in the race for the third and final guaranteed playoff spot in the Pacific Division. Trinity Western hosts Fraser Valley on Thursday Feb. 9 in Langley, B.C., while Thompson Rivers and UBC Okanagan meet in a home-and-home series Feb. 10-11.
Vikes senior guard Debbie Yeboah of Winnipeg enters the final two regular season games in fourth spot in the Canada West in scoring averaging 15.5 points per game. Sarah Semeniuk of Fruitvale, B.C., a recent selection to the CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-America team for success in the classroom and on the court, is UVic’s top rebounder, ranked seventh in the conference pulling down 7.4 rebounds per contest. UVic has the highest scoring offence in the Pacific Division, averaging 72.2 points per game.
Winners of their last three games, the Vikes have a better record this season on the road with a 5-3 showing off the Island and only 3-5 in Victoria.
UBC boasts the best defence in the conference, surrendering a league-low 56.9 points per game, and has only dropped one decision at home, a 77-66 loss to undefeated Regina on Nov. 12. The Thunderbirds are led by two strong scoring threats in Kristjana Young (15.3 PPG) and Zara Huntley (13.7 PPG), who is also a strong shot-blocker (1.5 BPG). UBC averages 4.9 blocked shots per game.
PROJECTED STARTING 5
UBC: 06 Kristjana Young / 12 Zara Huntley / 13 Alexandra Vieweg / 01 Kristen Hughes / 15 Leigh Stansfield
UVIC: 06 Debbie Yeboah / 04 Jessica Renfrew / 15 Chelsea McMullen / 08 Cassandra Goodis / 12 Sarah Semeniuk