University of Victoria Vikes women’s basketball players Jenna Bugiardini and Amira Giannattasio were both named tournament all-stars following the 21st Annual McGill Redbird Classic, Oct .16-18, hosted in Montreal, Que. at the McGill Sports Centre. The Vikes posted a 2-1 record with wins over Wilfrid Laurier and Thompson Rivers and one loss to hosts, McGill.
The Vikes opened the tournament with an 84-66 loss to the Redmen but Hamilton, Ont. natives Bugiardini and Giannattasio both hit double digits on the scoresheet. Bugiardini scored a game-high 19 points, while Giannattasio had 18. The Vikes also had a solid performance from Jenna Krug who put up seven points and four rebounds, while Katie Langdon came off the bench to impress with seven points.
McGill was led by Alex Kiss-Rusk’s 16 points and Dianna Ros’ 13 points, while 11 points from each of Gabriela Hebert and Mariam Sylla contributed to the Redmen’s victory. Despite the loss it was McGill who had 20 turnovers to Victoria’s eight, while the Vikes, unable to capitalize, loss the war under the boards 43-14.
Just one day later the Vikes women bounced back to drop Wilfrid Laurier by a commanding score of 80-59. Giannattasio, the 2014-15 Canada West Rookie of the Year, led all Vikes with 16 points, while Krug followed for 15 of her own. Giannattasio had nine points come from distance, while Kristy Gallagher added 10 points and three assists. Bugiardini was quiet on the scoresheet, just one of three Vikes to earn eight points, but also added four assists. Rookie Brittany Yee nabbed seven points and four assists in the win.
The Vikes wrapped up tournament play with a close 87-81 win over Canada West counterparts Thompson Rivers. Gallagher had an impressive 24-point performance, while Giannattasio, for the third day in a row, hit double digits with 20 points. Gallagher added four assists, four steals and four rebounds to go along with her game-high scoring total, while Giannattasio hit another three big shots from distance to contribute to her scoring frenzy.
The Vikes also had a strong showing from Bugiardini, who totaled 19 points, nine rebounds and five assists, while rookie Avery snider chipped in for 12 points and three assists. Collectively, the Vikes conceded 13 turnovers to the WolfPack’s 23, while Thompson Rivers out-rebounded Victoria 35-29.
Following their showing at the Redbird Classic the Vikes will return home for a four-game stint of exhibition matches across two weeks including hosting Western Ontario on Oct. 23, Ryerson on Oct. 25, Thompson Rivers on Oct. 31 and MacEwan on Nov. 1. These will be the final pre-season exhibition matches before Vikes women’s basketball head coach Dani Sinclair and her young squad visit Trinity Western for a double header, Nov. 6-7, to open the Canada West season. All regular season Canada West games can be viewed with live video and stats by pay-per-view at canadawest.tv.