Big night at UPEI

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Hockey Panthers to open AUS playoffs at St. F.X.; men’s basketball team clinches playoff spot

UPEI’s Suzanne Nicholson competes in the women's 100-metre butterfly during the 2013 Subway Atlantic University Sport Swimming Championships Friday at the CARI pool.

It’s the busiest weekend of the season at UPEI.

The university is hosting the Atlantic University Sport swim championships that started Friday.

The university’s men’s and women’s basketball teams were in action Friday and today.

The men’s hockey team wrapped up its regular season Friday night and knows who and where they play in the opening round of the playoffs, but not when.

The women’s hockey team plays today at home and Sunday on the road.

 

Men’s hockey

The UPEI Panthers will start the Atlantic University Sport men’s hockey playoffs on the road in Antigonish, N.S.

The Panthers’ 5-1 win over the St. Thomas Tommies Friday night wasn’t enough to seal home-ice advantage.

Dana Fraser netted two goals and an assist to cap off UPEI's regular season at MacLauchlan Arena.

The Panthers needed a Saint Mary’s win  in regulation time over St. F.X. to gain home-ice advantage in the quarter-final.

St. F.X. edged Saint Mary’s 4-3 in overtime in Halifax.

The first game of the quarter-final will likely be in Antigonish Wednesday, although a playoff schedule has yet to be confirmed.

UPEI assistant coach Devan Praught said while the team was disappointed by not clinching the advantage, it was happy to end the season with a win.

“You’ve just got to control what you can control,” said Praught. “It was good to get rolling in the right direction heading into playoffs.”

UPEI's other goals were scored by Chris DeSousa, Mason Wilgosh and Matt Brenton.

Jordan Mayer picked up three assists, while Brenton earned a pair of helpers. Singles also went to Dylan Quaile, Tyler Brown, Travis McIsaac and Jordan Knox.

St. Thomas’ goal went to Robert Zandbeek.

Wayne Savage stopped all six shots he faced to pick up the win while Jonathan Groenheyde was tagged with the loss.

Mavric Parks stopped six of seven shots after replacing Savage midway through the game to provide Savage some rest.

Acadia defeated Dalhousie 6-5 in the other AUS game Friday.

 

Men’s basketball

The UPEI Panthers are going to the playoffs.

The men’s team clinched a playoff spot Friday night with a 69-67 victory over the UNB Varsity Reds in Charlottetown.

The Panthers jumped out to a 27-15 lead after the first quarter but saw it reduced to 38-32 at the half. UPEI held a 60-55 lead after three and hung on for a two-point victory.

Mandrez Downey led the Panthers with 22 points while Deontay Smith added 12. Jermaine Duke chipped in with eight points, 13 rebounds, five blocks, an assist and a steal.

Will McFee had 28 points to lead the Varsity Reds on 9-of-28 shooting, including 1-of-10 from behind the arc.

UPEI hit 34 per cent of its shots compared to UNB’s 33. The Panthers connected on 6-of-19 (32 per cent) from downtown, but had trouble from the free-throw line, hitting 17-of-38 (45 per cent).

UPEI improved to 9-6 and snapped a four-game losing streak while UNB drops to 4-12. The Panthers are in third place with 24 points, two ahead of Dalhousie and eight back of Acadia.

UPEI hosts the conference-leading Cape Breton Capers (15-0) tonight at 8 p.m.

 

Women’s basketball

The UPEI Panthers jumped out to a 24-5 lead after the first quarter and cruised to a 61-48 victory over the UNB Varsity Reds Friday in Atlantic University Sport women’s basketball.

It was the team’s first win on home court this season and more importantly worth four points in the standings.

“Last time we played them we had a slow start. We weren’t going to let that happen (again),” said third-year guard Jenna Jones. “We needed this win.”

The Panthers improved to a 3-11, including 1-5 at home, while the Varsity Reds drop to 2-13.

“It’s great feeling,” Jones said.

Amy Gough added 12 points while Nakita Newman and Laura Power each added nine. Newman added four steals, four assists, a rebound and a block.

Claire Colborne had 21 points to lead the Reds.

The Panthers shot 90 per cent (19-of-21) from the free-throw line while UNB was 50 per cent (8-of-16).

The win allowed the Panthers, who now have 12 points, to leapfrog the Cape Breton Capers (4-11, 10 points) into sixth place in the standings. The Panthers host the Capers tonight at 6 p.m. in another critical four-point game.

UPEI is eight points back of Memorial for the last playoff spot, but has a game in hand. The two teams play two four-point games to end the regular season in two weeks time in St. John’s.

 

Swimming

The Mount Allison men's 4x100 freestyle relay team stunned the crowd at the Atlantic University Sport (AUS) swimming championships with a wire-to-wire victory Friday to highlight the first night of finals at UPEI.

Colin Vale grabbed the lead right off the blocks and his teammates Joe Blackwood, Jeff Loewen and Mitchell Peters held it all the way to the end to beat traditional favourite Dalhousie Tigers to take the gold medal.

The Tigers went home far from empty handed, as Charlottetown native James Profit grabbed the gold in the men’s 400-metre Individual Medley for Dalhousie in his first conference championship.

Powerful Dalhousie won nine of the 12 event finals contested Friday, to take a commanding lead in their quest for another in a long run of AUS championships (14 straight for the men, 11 consecutive for the women).

Dalhousie men have 127 points with Mount Allison next with 77 and Acadia with 57, followed by University of New Brunswick, Memorial and UPEI.

The Dal women have racked up 167 points, with UNB in second with 65, and Acadia in third with 42,  followed by Mount Allison, Memorial and UPEI.

For the hometown UPEI Panthers, the highlight was rookie Zach Laursten’s fifth-place finish in a fast 100-metre butterfly final.

Swimming is scheduled to continue today with heats set to start at 10 a.m. and finals at 6 p.m. The same schedule is in place for Sunday’s competition.

Results are available at http://results.teamunify.com/cancb/

Organizations: Atlantic University Sport, Panthers, University of New Brunswick UPEI.The university Friday.The university

Geographic location: Antigonish, Saint Mary, Acadia Charlottetown

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  • BG
    February 09, 2013 - 15:07

    UPEI Women's Basketball has FOUR wins. 12 pts. Wins: @STFX, @Dal, @CapeBreton, UNB