Cougar Basketball preview

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Men’s and wWomen’s bBasketball prep for the season. Nathan McCarville

Both Cougar teams look to build off playoff performances

The men’s and women’s basketball teams kick off their pre-season journey this weekend with the women playing at home against Lakeland College (Sept. 20) and Medicine Hat College (Sept. 22), while the men will open with the Guy Vetrie Memorial Tournament in Victoria on the first weekend in October.

Last year, the men were quite successful making it to the playoffs, but ultimately lost in the Canada West Quarterfinals to the rival University of Saskatchewan. This year in the super-competitive Western Conference, the Cougars are hoping to repeat their success and make it to the playoffs. On the women’s side, the consistently good team looks to continue their success for yet another year with superstar Kyanna Giles leading the way again. I spoke with both head coaches, Steve Burrows and Dave Taylor, about the upcoming year as well to gain some insight into this year’s teams. Burrows’ current focus is on preventing points rather than creating them.

“We need to keep taking steps forward in all areas but particularly on the defensive side of the ball. [It’s] tough for us to play at the pace we want without generating enough stops defensively.”

Meanwhile Coach Taylor is aware that keeping players of the injury list has to be a key priority this seas.

“Each year we have different goals for the team. Every year the variable is always health. We need to be healthy and then playing well at the end of [the] season. If we do that, then we will take our chances.”

Both coaches said they hadn’t shifted their coaching philosophy, but that they did have consistent themes for the year

“It might not be the same thing to each player, but one constant message we have is to try and get to what happens next first,” said Burrows.

“Whether something happened that was good or bad [we] have to move to what happens next quickly.”

Taylor’s focus, meanwhile, is rooted in five key principles.

“We talk about our values of accountability, compete, rebound, unity and joy. If we live those values, it will see us through adversity.”

Burrows is clear about the ultimate goal.

“Again, try and be a playoff team and if we can get that done, try and get as deep as we can. We play in a very tough conference, so we have a lot of work ahead of us, but we are looking forward to it!”

It’s a sentiment shared by Taylor.

“[The] goals are really to be playing our best at [the] end of [the] season and give us a chance to win playoff games.”

Regular Season Home Schedule

01/11/2019   UBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

01/11/2019   UBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

02/11/2019   UBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

02/11/2019   UBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

15/11/2019   Winnipeg vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

15/11/2019   Winnipeg vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

16/11/2019   Winnipeg vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

16/11/2019   Winnipeg vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

29/11/2019   Alberta vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

29/11/2019   Alberta vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

30/11/2019   Alberta vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

30/11/2019   Alberta vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

10/01/2020   Brandon vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

10/01/2020   Brandon vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

11/01/2020   Brandon vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

11/01/2020   Brandon vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

31/01/2020   UNBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

31/01/2020   UNBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

01/02/2020   UNBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 6:00 pm (W)

01/02/2020   UNBC vs. Regina – Centre for Kinesiology Health and Sport 8:00 pm (M)

Playoffs

Canada West Quarterfinals 

21/02/2020 * Canada West Quarterfinal (Location to be announced)
Canada West Semifinals

22/02/2020 * Canada West Semifinal (Location to be announced)

Canada West Final 

29/02//2020 * Canada West Final (Location to be announced)

U Sports Championships

05-08/03/2020 U SPORTS Championship Ottawa, Ont. (W)

05-08/03/2020 U SPORTS Championship Ottawa, Ont. (M)

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