It’s a busy time of the year for Huskie Athletics as both court sports — volleyball and basketball — are now in full swing amidst the busy hockey season.
Playoff action for men’s soccer highlights the latest news from the dogs — aside from the football team heading to their second consecutive Hardy Cup final.
Despite entering the Canada West final as the hottest team in the conference with seven straight wins, the Huskie season came to an abrupt end on the west coast.
Two second-half goals lifted the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds over the Huskies in the semifinal, sending Saskatchewan to the bronze medal match to face the University of Mount Royal Cougars.
Against Mount Royal, the Huskies jumped out to an early 1-0 in the opening 15 minutes of action. The Cougars would tie the game before the second half and grab the lead just over 10 minutes after the half-time break. Mount Royal added a goal in the 90th minute to secure the 3-1 victory and earn the bronze medal.
Unfortunately for the dogs, four of their veterans have played their last game as a Huskie. Defender Jacob Powell, forward Darko Hardi and midfielders Gabriel Buatois and Marcello Gonzalez will all be forced to walk away as their U Sports eligibility has expired.
Women’s and men’s volleyball
The Huskie women’s volleyball team is 5-1 to start a season for the first time since at least 2009-10. They have now won three straight games after the weekend sweep of the University of Brandon Bobcats.
What makes the Huskie sweep of the Bobcats particularly impressive is that Saskatchewan did not lose a single set over the two games, winning 3-0 in each match.
The men’s team took an unfortunate step back against Brandon, dropping both games after entering the weekend on a three-game winning streak. Saskatchewan clinched only one set throughout both games.
Both of these Huskie teams will now go on the road for a trip to the University of British Columbia Okanagan campus to battle against the Heat on Nov. 15 and 16.
Women’s and men’s basketball
The Huskie women’s basketball team began their season on the road with two wins against a clearly outmatched University of Brandon Bobcats team.
Saskatchewan captured game one with 78-21 before winning game two with 99-41. The Huskies flashed their depth with six scorers reaching double-digit points in the second game with Sabine Dukate and Summer Masikewich each leading the team with 15 points apiece.
This team opened the season as the number one ranked team across the country, and they have won the conference title for three of the past four seasons. Head coach Lisa Thomaidis has built an impressive tradition of excellence for the Huskies.
The men’s team is also 2-0 after the season-opening weekend in Brandon.
Alexander Dewar surged the Huskies past the Bobcats in game one. Dewar scored 28 points on 11 of 13 shooting to lead the Huskies to the 94-81 victory. In game two, JT Robinson scored 20 points for the Huskies in the 87-75 win.
Both the men’s and women’s team will play their home opener against the University of MacEwan Griffins on Nov. 8 and 9 at the Physical Activity Complex.
Women’s and men’s hockey
After an ugly start to the season that saw men’s hockey lose their first four games, the Huskies have clawed their way back to .500 after a weekend sweep on the road against the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds.
Huskies goalie Travis Child earned a 27-save shutout in the 4-0 game one victory. Child started in place of the 2018 U Sports goalie of the year, Taran Kozun.
Kozun started the first seven out of eight games this season, which may have prompted head coach Dave Adolph to give his star goaltender some rest.
Child started the second game as well, which did not go as smoothly as his performance the night before. Child and the Huskies surrendered three goals on 11 shots in the first period, forcing Adolph to switch goalies to start the second period.
Kozun played well in relief, stopping all 15 shots that he faced. The Huskies did not play with a lead all game before Jared Dmytriw scored the game-winning goal in overtime to steal the win.
Men’s hockey will be back home on Nov. 15 and 16 to take on the University of Manitoba Bisons.
Huskie women’s hockey also sits at .500 after dropping both games at home against the Thunderbirds. Saskatchewan almost took down the top team in the conference in the first game, losing in overtime instead despite outshooting UBC 24-17.
In the second game, the Huskies were left off the scoring sheet as UBC won game two 1-0 to secure the weekend sweep.
This team will travel to Manitoba to play the Bisons on Nov. 15 and 16.
Tanner Michalenko/ Sports & Health Editor
Photo: Supplied by GetMyPhoto.ca/ Huskie Athletics