To celebrate the centennial year of Huskie Athletics, the Sheaf has compiled a list of our favourite Huskies performances from the 2011-12 sports seasons. Everything from wrestling to basketball and even coaching made our list.
Ward’s triple-overtime winner
Possibly the most intense moment of the Huskies’ year came in the 106th minute of the Canada West men’s hockey final at Rutherford Rink on March 11.
While several players on the Huskies deserve recognition for their strong performances — especially goaltender Ryan Holfeld, who stopped 38 of 39 Calgary Dino shots in the game — defenceman Brett Ward takes the Sheaf’s top mention for his triple-overtime goal.
In the sixth period of what is now the longest game in Canada West history, Ward’s point shot squeaked through the Calgary netminder’s pads and pushed the Huskies to a 2-1 win and their first conference title since 2007.
It also earned them a berth in the national tournament for the first time since 2008.
“I definitely haven’t scored the winner in a game like this before,” said Ward after the game. “Thank God it went in.”
linton goes big on first goal
Julia Flinton, a rookie defenceman for the Huskies women’s hockey team, made a lasting impression on fans and coaches on Oct. 29, 2011.
In the second game of a two-game series against the University of Alberta Pandas, Flinton pushed the Huskies to a weekend sweep by netting the first goal of her university career on a slapshot in overtime.
It was the first time ever the Huskies had swept the Pandas on home ice at Rutherford Rink.
“I’ve never scored an overtime goal like that,” Flinton said after the game. “It’s an amazing feeling and I’m just on top of the world right now.”
Flinton was nominated for the Huskies female rookie of the year after finishing second in the Canada West rookie scoring race.
Coakwell conquers UBC
Ben Coakwell was plagued with injury this season, missing three of the Huskies football team’s nine games. On Sept. 30, 2011 against the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds, however, the fifth-year running back was in top shape.
Coakwell rushed for 205 yards on 20 carries and recorded two touchdowns in a spectacular return to the field — it was only his second game of the season and first since an early-season injury put him on the sidelines for two straight weeks.
The Huskies won 36-33.
Coakwell’s rushing yards in that single game made up almost half of his six-game, 420-yard total on the season.
Towriss in a league of his own
The 36-33 victory following Coakwell’s dominating performance Sept. 30 also launched Huskies head coach Brian Towriss into the record books. Towriss earned his 170th career win, the most all-time by a head coach in Canadian Interuniversity Sport football.
Towriss has been the head coach of the Huskies for longer than most of his players have been alive. He took over the position from Val Schneider in 1984 and has been racking up wins ever since.
He will continue to improve his record next season as he returns for another year.
Jones drains nine threes
Duncan Jones went out in style in his last basketball game in a Huskies uniform.
He led the team to a Canada West bronze medal March 3 at home against the University of Victoria Vikes. Jones put up an astounding 40 points in the game and made nine of his 10 three-point attempts.
The career-best single-game stats tied him with two others for the most three-point baskets by a Huskies player in one game.
Ryan Myrfield, the Huskies men’s wrestling captain, has consistently dominated the university wrestling circuit throughout his three competing seasons with the University of Saskatchewan. This year, Myrfield won his third national gold medal Feb. 25 at Lakehead University after successfully defending his 72-kilogram weight class title.
In 2008-09, Myrfield took gold in the 68-kilogram weight class as a rookie.
Lieffers reaches 1000 points and rebounds
Huskies forward Michael Lieffers joined an exclusive tier of Huskies athletes this season by eclipsing the 1000-point mark in his university basketball career Jan. 20. As if that wasn’t enough, the next week he surpassed another milestone by reaching 1000 rebounds.
While Lieffers completed his athletic eligibility this season, he will be remembered as one of the greatest basketball players to ever wear the green and white jersey.
He is only one of 37 Huskies to reach the millennial mark in both categories.
Hudon scores twice in final game of career
Elizabeth Hudon helped establish the Huskies women’s soccer team as a competitive force throughout her five-year stay with the Huskies.
She was especially motivated, however, in her final game with the squad.
Hudon scored twice against the Manitoba Bisons on Oct. 30, 2011 in what was an emotional final match.
“It was a good way to go out, [but] I might cry talking about it,” she said after the game.
The four-time all-star captained the team last year and holds the Canada West record for points (53), goals (44) and shots (241).
Photos: Raisa Pezderic/The Sheaf