Huskies look to keep pace atop standings

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by Daniel Herrick, Sports Information Student Assistant

January 29, 2014, Saskatchewan (ISN) – The University of Saskatchewan women’s basketball team looks to clinch a spot in the postseason, while keeping pace with the top teams in the conference for home court advantage against the University of Northern British Columbia Timberwolves and the Mount Royal Cougars this weekend.

The women’s squad enters the weekend ranked No. 5 and is joined by three other Canada West teams, No. 3 Alberta, No. 4 Regina and No. 7 Fraser Valley, in the CIS Top 10.

The Huskie women’s team is the second best shooting team in the conference at 44% and is second in scoring average at 71.9 points per game.

Huskie forward Dalyce Emmerson leads the CIS in blocks (48), shooting percentage (61.8) and rebounds per game (11.8).

UNBC forward Mercedes VanKoughnett leads the conference with 5.9 assists per game.

The women’s squad enters the weekend in a three-way tie for first in the Prairie Division with Regina (14-2) and Alberta (14-2).

With a win this weekend, the Huskies clinch a postseason position. The Huskies still have a chance at first in the division and conference due to a date with the Alberta Pandas in the last weekend of the season.

This weekend is the last time regular season action at the PAC.

  • Grey Cup Champions and University of Saskatchewan alum and football alum Ben Heenan, Paul Woldu, Scott McHenry, Graeme Bell, Levi Steinhauer and Graig Newman will all be honoured on Friday night during Family Weekend. A special presentation and autograph session for fans will happen during the night.
  • The Huskies will honour lone fifth-year Kiera Lyons for her contributions to the team.

WOMEN’S SERIES

Vs. UNBC: In their first ever Canada West conference meeting, Saskatchewan handled the Timberwolves 92-70 in Prince George, B.C. This weekend marks the first time the teams will meet in Saskatoon.

Vs. Mount Royal: In the lone meeting between the two programs in Canada West conference play, the Huskies won a close contest 66-60 in Calgary a season ago. This will be the first time Mount Royal visits the PAC for conference action.

UNIVERSITY OF NORTHERN BRITISH COLUMBIA TIMBERWOLVES (4-12)

The Timberwolves, who have dropped six straight and 9-of-10, look to play spoil the Huskies bid to lock up a playoff spot.

Despite their 4-12 record, the Timberwolves are one of the top shooting teams in the conference. UNBC is in the top five in both field goal percentage (40%) and three-point shooting percentage (32%). Turnovers have hurt the squad, committing the second most in the Canada West this season at 22.1 per night.

Mercedes VanKoughnett has been outstanding for the Timberwolves averaging a conference high 5.9 assists per game. Vankoghnett is in the top 10 in the conference in scoring (16.6), rebounds (10.2) and steals (3.3). Emily Kaehn adds 11.9 points and 7.1 rebounds per game for the ‘Wolves.

UNBC will travel to Edmonton to take on the Alberta Pandas on Saturday night.

MOUNT ROYAL UNIVERSITY COUGARS (1-15)

A Mount Royal squad that has won just once this season hopes to put up a tough fight against the powerhouse Huskies on the road.

The young Cougar team, featuring eight active players in the freshman or sophomore season, continues to gain experience in their second year in the Canada West.

Jordan McLean leads the team in scoring and rebounds with 13.3 points and 10.2 rebounds per night. Her rebounding totals put her second among conference leaders. Freshman Alicia Tan averages 3.3 assists and 3.3 steals per game for the Cougars.

Mount Royal will face the Alberta Pandas on Friday night prior to taking on the Huskies on Saturday.

NO. 5 UNIVERSITY OF SASKATCHEWAN HUSKIES (14-2)

Saskatchewan will look for back-to-back weekend sweeps in order to stay in the running for the top seed in the Canada West Prairie Division.

The Huskies are locked in a three-way tie with the Regina Cougars and Alberta Pandas with just three weeks to go in the regular season. Saskatchewan is just one win away from clinching a playoff spot and if they keep on the winning path still have a chance at the top seed in the division and conference.

Third-year forward Dalyce Emmerson is averaging a double-double while leading the CIS in field goal percentage at 61.8 percent, blocked shots with 48 and rebounds per game with 11.8 to go along with 19.4 points. Fifth-year guard Kiera Lyons adds 11.5 points per night. Kabree Howard continues to lead the conference in assist-turnover ratio, averaging 3.8 assists per game.

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