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UFV Basketball: A strong finish

A recap of the men’s and women’s basketball team’s performances at the CIS nationals

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By Paul Esau (The Cascade) – Email

Print Edition: March 14, 2012

Women:

The UFV women walked into the University of Ottawa’s Montpetit Hall on March 9 with their backs against the wall. Having placed fourth in the Canada West Final Four tournament, they were competing with some of the nation’s top-ranked teams for a single berth in CIS Nationals. First up was the University of Ottawa Gee Gees, and a must-win game for the women in green.

Despite a Player of the Game performance from Kayli Sartori (15 points, seven rebounds), and strong support from Tessa Klassen (14 points) and Aieisha Luyken (11 points, five steals), the Cascades fell 69-75 in what became their final game of the season. It was a good run and a strong finish.

Men:

The UFV Men started their jaunt in the CIS Finals in Halifax on Friday March 9 with a commanding 83-71 dismantling of the Lakehead University Thunderwolves. The victory came largely on the back of Cascades guard Sheldon Bjorgaard, who went an outrageous 5-6 from three-point land, 100 per cent from the line, and scored 19 points overall.

On the Saturday, the Cascades took on the Carleton University Ravens, a team with a 27-0 season record heading into the game. UFV started tough, but the team was plagued by turnovers in the first half, and suffered a 12-point scoring deficit in the third quarter. Carleton prevailed 85-63 to send the Cascades to the bronze medal game against the St. Francis Xavier X-Men.

In this game, at the end of all things basketball, the Cascades found in Kyle Grewal a monster performance. Grewal scored 35 points and grabbed 14 rebounds as UFV came within a single play of forcing overtime. Yet at the final buzzer the X-Men were ahead 89-86, and the Cascades conceded to a still very respectable fourth-place finish nationally.

Overall, pretty good for two teams with only six years of CIS competition. Well done, Cascades!

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