UVic Vikes were on the field and in the water this weekend and achieved some great results.
Amira Giannattasio scored 23 points in the first half and 36 overall to help lead the UVic Vikes women’s basketball to a 78-64 victory over the visiting UBC Okanagan Heat inside the CARSA Performance Gym on Saturday.
“She was hot, we were able to find her and we even missed her sometimes when she was going,” said Vikes head coach Dani Sinclair. “She opened some stuff up for other people too but she can be pretty special when she’s on like that.”
Also playing a key role in the win was a Vikes defence that forced the Heat into making turnovers all game long. Third-year forward Marissa Dheensaw led the way on the defensive end, picking up seven steals in the first half and finishing the game with 15 points in her 35 minutes on the court.
Second-year guard Emma Jonas led the Heat in scoring on the night, recording 18 points while going a perfect eight-for-eight from the charity stripe. Jonas was a thorn in the side of the Vikes all night long, sometimes willing her team back into the game by herself.
After the Heat knocked down an early three-pointer to tie the game at 23, the Vikes went on an absolute tear in the middle of the second quarter, going on a 13-0 run and ending the half up 42-29.
The Heat stepped things up a notch coming out of the halftime break and were able to increase the pressure defensively to slow down the Vikes offence but couldn’t quite string together enough baskets in a row to cut the lead to single digits as the Vikes led 55-45 after three quarters of play.
“In some ways it was similar to last night,” said Sinclair. “We got that ten point buffer, increased it to twenty and then let them get back into the game. I take responsibly for some of that with subbing rotations but we have to be better to manage the game and finish out the game.”
A shot from Shenelle Tamminen would eventually cut the Vikes lead to just nine but that was as close as the Heat would come as the Vikes pulled away late in the fourth quarter en route to the 14 point win.
The Heat will get the chance to pick up their first win of the Canada West season when they return to Kelowna for a pair of games against the Thompson Rivers WolfPack on Nov. 4 and 5.
A 35-8 advantage in the third quarter of play powered the UVic Vikes men’s basketball team to a dominant 81-52 victory over the visiting UBCO Heat at CARSA.
“In the first half we were still kind of fighting ourselves in the sense that we were just grinding, because we didn’t have our best effort last night I think tonight we felt a little bit of pressure to get a result,” said Vikes head coach Craig Beaucamp. “When we hit a couple shots in the third quarter we started to play the way that we have been playing throughout most of the pre-season.”
Fourth-year forward Justin Kinnear led the way for the Vikes with 17 points and four rebounds. Mason Loewen added 11 points of his own while Jordan Charles finished with nine points, six assists and seven boards on the night.
Owen Keyes led the team with 11 points and four assists, Justin Melynchuk added 10 points and four assists while Triston Matthews rounded out the scoring with nine points and seven rebounds.
“It’s a bit bittersweet right now,” said Heat head coach Pete Guarasci of his team’s weekend. “I’m sure Monday morning that I’ll feel better about the weekend but right now it’s a tough one to swallow.”
The two teams played to each other to a stalemate throughout the first half, ending the opening frame tied at 15 and the Vikes up just 34-30 after the opening two quarters.
Everything started to click for the Vikes in the third.
The team played stifling defence to force the Heat into multiple turnovers while making almost every shot they took on the offensive end.
With the lead at 31 points after that dominant display in the third quarter the fourth was mostly academic as the Heat tried to will their way back into the game but could only get as close as the eventual 29 point deficit that the game ended at.
The Heat return to Kelowna where they will play a pair of games against their rivals from Thompson Rivers on Nov. 4 and 5. The Vikes meanwhile will hit the road for back-to-back games against the Brandon Bobcats on Nov. 3 and 4.
The University of Victoria Vikes women’s rowing team were golden at home winning the Western Canadian University Rowing Championship on Saturday at Elk Lake. The Vikes women took gold in five events to edge UBC by 10.5 points for conference bragging rights.
The women’s coxed four of Kirsten McKay, Judy Beestermoeller, Layla Balooch, Lise McCracken and coxswain Jess Wallace kicked off the Vikes’ medal run winning the first finals race of the day in 7:07.8 ahead of UBC.
Second-year Vike and national team standout Caileigh Filmer won the women’s single event in 7:24.89 ahead of UBC’s Rachel Vukovich. Filmer went on to win two more golds with the women’s pair and eight.
Avalon Wasteneys and Filmer had an impressive finish in the pair, edging team mates Olivia King and Morgan Cathrea for gold. Wasteneys and Filmer finished in 7:12.79, while King and Cathrea crossed in 7:15.95. UBC finished third in 7:27.19.
The Vikes junior varsity eights of Kirsten McKay, Judy Beestermoeller, Imogen White, Roza Kalashnikoff, Layla Balooch, Kirsten Edwards, Piper Battersby, Elise McCracken and coxswain Hannah Kennedy edged UBC to top the podium in 6:17.91.
The varsity eight closed out the women’s competition with a dominating performance over two UBC crews. Coxswain Cassidy Fernandes commanded the crew of McKenna Simpson, Larissa McKinlay, Jessica Stewart, Cathrea, King, Chapman, Wasteneys and Filmer to gold in a time of 6:05.12. The Vikes finished seven seconds ahead of UBC’s eight (6:12.41).
The Vikes women’s dominating performance garners them their fourth overall western regional championship, last won in 2011 and previously won in 2009 and 2010.
Up the next the Vikes will have a quick turnover as they prepare for the Canadian University Rowing Championship at Burnaby Lake on Nov. 4-5.
The University of Victoria Vikes men’s rowing team are saving fuel in the tank for the national championship as they finished runners up in the team standings . The Vikes won gold in three events but finished behind the UBC Thunderbirds in team standings and the all-important eights and lightweight four.
In the Vikes’ first finals race the coxed four finished just 1.01 seconds back of UBC with a time of 6:13.72. Bailey Kulman commanded that crew of Alexander Sawers, Alec Stapff, Travis Gronsdahl and Phil Kirker.
The first gold medal came in the men’s lightweight single thanks to 2017 World Cup team Canada member and third-year Vike Patrick Keane. Keane powered his way to gold in 6:46.44 ahead of UBC’s Aaron Lattimer (6:52.93).
Fourth-year Ontario native Lucien Brodeur, who represented Canada at the U23 World Championships this year, earned the Vikes men their second gold-medal finish. Brodeur took the men’s single in 7:00.03, dominating the final as second-placed Maxwell Lattimer of UBC finished in 7:17.42.
The Vikes needed points from their lightweight coxed four to surpass UBC in the standings but the crew of coxswain Bailey Kulman, Sam Garber, Sebastian and Christian Gulka and Keane finished second in 6:19.64, just under four seconds behind the T-Birds.
Vikes Mathew Szymanowski and Taylor Perry wrapped up the medal winning as the duo topped the podium in the men’s pair in a time of 6:45.67. In the most exciting race of the day, Szymanowski and Perry overcame a collision with UBC’s Harris Sheldon and David Marchioro. Both boats came to a complete stop in lane 3 and 4, giving time for UBC’s Matthew Schultz and Brendan Wall to take the lead in lane 2. Miraculously Vikes Szymanowski and Perry caught up in the final sprint and just edged Schultz and Wall for gold by 0.8 seconds.
Vikes finished second to UBC in the lightweight men’s double and the men’s eight, while in consolation the novice men’s eight, not counting towards team points, finished first in their event in a dominating time of 3:31.73. The next-closest novice eight was Calgary who finished in 3:55.17.
Overall the Vikes men finished second and 27 points back of the Thunderbirds. Up the next the Vikes will have a quick turnover as they prepare for the Canadian University Rowing Championship at Burnaby Lake on Nov. 4-5.
A complete team effort saw the UVic Vikes men’s rugby team lead from start to finish in a 72-0 victory over the Calgary Dinos in Kelowna on Saturday and Sunday.
“Our forwards played their best game of the season with James O’Neill leading the way helped out by Carson O’Sullivan and Jesse Burns,” said Vikes head coach Doug Tate, after Saturday’s game.
“It was a very satisfying weekend that sees us qualify for the National Championships in Guelph,” said Tate. “The boys played a fast paced game and there were a lot of very good team tries.”
The Vikes outscored their opponents 144-0 in the two games they played over the weekend, qualifying for nationals in style.
The UVic Vikes women’s soccer team scored a goal early and then weathered a fearsome Calgary Dinos attack to pick up a 1-0 victory inside Centennial Stadium on Sunday. With the victory, the Vikes qualify for the Canada West Final Four tournament that will be held in Langley, B.C. from Nov. 3-5.
“We were hungry, aggressive and going for the win,” said Vikes head coach Tracy David on her team’s first half performance. “We knew what this game meant and that’s how we played.”
The loss ends the season for a Dinos team that came close on multiple occasions to levelling the score as they put the pressure on in the second half.
Fourth-year Vike Caitlin Millham scored the only goal of the game while Kiara Kilbey picked up an assist for her tenth point of the season.Puck Louwes was named MVP of the match in the Vikes net as she made three saves to record her 11th shutout on the year.The game was a tale of two halves as the Vikes came out of the gates strong, dominating possession and firing ten shots towards net in the frame.
All of that Vikes pressure paid off in the 25th minute of play when Kilbey and Millham combined for the goal that would send the Vikes onto the next round of the Canada West playoffs. Kilbey tussled with a Dinos defender in Calgary’s 18-yard box before gaining control of the ball and firing it into the path of Millham who was able to redirect in into the back of the net.
The Vikes kept on searching for a second goal in the first half but a combination of strong Dinos defence and some bad luck kept the team from doubling their lead.The script was reversed coming out of the halftime break as it was the Dinos turn to put the Vikes under pressure. Five of their eight shots came in the second frame as the team from Calgary threw everything they could at the net in the hopes of extending their season.
“In the first half UVic was exceptional and we struggled to deal with them,” said Dinos head coach Troye Flannery. “We made a couple tactical changes at halftime that suited us. I thought we were really good in the second half and if we string that performance out for two halves then it could have been a different day.”
The Dinos best chance to equalize came in the 62nd minute when Maddison Fritze created some chaos.The fifth-year forward from Edmonton controlled a pass into the box and took on four Vikes defenders before her attempted cross ricocheted up into the air inside the Vikes six-yard box. The looping ball fell right onto the head of Damiane Sawatzky and for a second it looked her effort would tie the game up before Louwes streaked across the net to calmly catch the ball.
While Calgary continued to pressure late they couldn’t find the all-important tying goal as a Vikes defence that allowed just six goals through fourteen regular season games stepped up once again when the team needed it the most.
“We are so relieved and so happy, we have been trying to take it one step at a time but obviously this was our goal and you just can’t keep nationals out of our hearts right now,” said Millham.
The Vikes will now begin preparing for their first game at the Final Four where they will face the MacEwan Griffins, who pulled out a final second upset victory to defeat the Alberta Pandas.