February 20, 2013, The University of Saskatchewan Huskie men’s basketball team begins a journey Friday that could lead the squad to their third appearance in four seasons at the CIS Championship.
Although the Huskies missed playing on the national stage in 2011-12 after an upset loss in the Canada West semifinal on home court, Saskatchewan has played in the tournament in the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons. The first step along the road is a Canada West quarter-final series against the University of Fraser Valley Cascades.
The Cascades hit the PAC Friday, Saturday and Sunday (if needed). The winner of this weekend’s best-of-three series advances to the Canada West Final Four March 1-2 with a chance to earn one of two Canada West berths to nationals in Ottawa, March 8-10.
Saskatchewan, who finished 16-6 in the regular season, went 10-1 on home court during the 2012-13 regular season. The impressive win-loss record at the PAC extends to 58-8 dating back to the 2009-10. Saskatchewan has lost at home just four times since November 7, 2010.
Fraser Valley took the final playoff spot in the pacific division with a 12-10 record.
Since 2006-07, the Huskies are 6-1 against Fraser Valley including a regular season 90-82 win in January in Abbotsford. The Cascades lone win against the Huskies came in overtime101-99 on November 2, 2007. The Huskies swept the lone playoff series between the two teams in 2009-10 en route to Saskatchewan’s CIS Championship victory.
The Huskies boasted the top scoring offence in the Canada West throughout 2012-13 averaging 86.6 points per game. Canada West leading scorer Stephon Lamar has been a big part of the Huskies’ success averaging 22.9 points per game. Second-year forward Matthew Forbes has also made an impact with 17.4 points per game and 7 rebounds. Fifth-year Patrick Burns dominated throughout the regular season in rebounding averaging 9.2 per night.
Fraser Valley’s Sam Freeman sat right behind Lamar in the conference scoring race averaging 21.6 points per game. Kevon Parchment and Kyle Gewal also chipped in with scoring for the Cascades with 17.9 and 12.9 points per game respectively. Parchment also led his team with 8 rebounds per game.
Tipoff for the series is 7 p.m. Friday, Saturday, and, if necessary, Sunday at the PAC. The games will be webcast on www.canadawest.tv. For tickets call 306-966-1111 or visit huskies.usask.ca