Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Canada West Regular Season Week One

Canada West regular season play kicks off this weekend with 12 of the 14 teams in action. There are three pairs of games that are Fri/Sat double headers and a pair of single games (one on Friday TWU/UBC and one on Saturday SFU/UVic). Regina and Saskatchewan do not play Canada West regular season games this weekend although the Cougars are playing non-conference games. All records listed are pre-season vs. CIS teams only.

Friday Night:
#7 Trinity Western (1-0 at #2 UBC (3-0) 8 PM PACIFIC (webcast on The Spartans, who played only 1 pre-season game against CIS competition, immediately have an opportunity to improve on their CISHOOPS.CA ranking with a visit to #2 T-Birds (3-0 in CIS pre-season). TWU's young guards will have to deal with T-Birds deep and athletic backcourt led by 6'2" Josh Whyte while UBC's less experienced backcourt will have to deal with 6'8" Moser Award winner Jacob Doerksen and NCAA D1 transfer 6'6" Tyrell Mara among others. Will perceived strength at guard overcome a strong front line ? The weekend's marquee CIS matchup in Vancouver should answer this question. This is the only game of the weekend between these two teams which are forecasted to compete for the Canada West - West Division championship.

Fraser Valley (2-3) at Thompson Rivers (0-4) 8 PM PACIFIC The Cascades travel to Kamloops where the WolfPack look for their first win against CIS competition this season. TRU has webcast games in the past; check the TRU website for more details. These teams also play on Saturday night.

Winnipeg (1-4) at #3 Calgary (3-0) 8 PM MOUNTAIN The Dinos look to avenge a 14 point loss at Winnipeg last season led in their backcourt by freshman Winnipeg native 5'10" Jarred Ogunbemi-Jackson, who can "d" up the ball and played major minutes in the Laval tournament this past weekend. This also marks the CIS regular season debut of touted 6'11" Adam Dobriansky, a NCAA D1 transfer from Monmouth College. Teams also play on Saturday night.

Lethbridge (0-0) at Alberta (2-4) 8 PM MOUNTAIN Two Canada West rookie coaches make their regular season debuts although the Horns Dave Adams did coach in the 90's on a interim basis while Bears Greg Francis makes his home court debut with a freshman-laden group. Both Friday and Saturday games are available with live! stats on the Alberta web site.

Manitoba (2-4) at Brandon (1-2) 8 PM CENTRAL TIME Kirby Schepp makes his CIS regular season coaching debut with a comparatively small lineup that has thus far played reasonably exciting basketball by spreading the floor and playing pseudo small ball. The Bobcats have been without All-Canadian Dany Charlery, unavailable for much of the pre-season and are working in several new faces into their always-athletic and exciting lineup. The teams also play on Saturday.

Saturday Night:
Simon Fraser (2-1) at Victoria (1-2) 7 PM PACIFIC The Vikes men's have led Canada West in defensive scoring for five consecutive years, and with an emphasis on D assured again for 2009-10, this year's task at hand will be improving production at the opposite end of the floor. SFU features three Vancouver Island natives including senior Matt Kuzminski of Nanaimo. The Vikes swept their 2008-09 season series versus the Clan 3-0. All Vikes home games are broadcast online, with streaming video and audio commentary, at:

Also, 20:00 Man@Bran; 20:00 Wpg@Cgy; 20:00 Leth@AB.

Here is the official Canada West men's basketball preview from Canada West sports information

2009-10 Canada West Men's Basketball Preview by Canada West Sports Information Offices

Overview: Canada West basketball sees a big change in the league format, adopting a two-division system, with the Great Plains and Central Divisions merged and a Pacific Division that remains intact. The playoff format sees four Prairie teams make the post-season, three Pacific schools in and a wild card team between the Prairie fifth-place finisher and Pacific fourth-place squad.

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