When the University of Victoria Vikes men’s basketball team ventures to Ottawa this week for the Canadian Interuniversity Sport national basketball championship, they will be staring at a monster challenge in their opening game.
The Vikes, Canada West silver medallists after losing the conference championship game to the UBC Thunderbirds on Saturday night, have been named the eighth seed for the tournament, which will be played at Scotiabank Place. That means a quarter-final matchup with No. 1 seed, two-time defending champion and host Carleton Ravens on Friday night.
The Ravens, Ontario champions again this season, sport a regular season and playoff record of 22-1. The Vikes hold an overall record of 19-7. Curiously, Carleton and UVic are tied for the most national basketball titles with eight apiece. UBC is next with two.
The Cape Breton Capers, winners of the Atlantic conference, were named the No. 2 seed and will face No. 7 seed Lakehead Thunderwolves in Friday’s quarter-finals. Other quarter-final matchups include the third-seeded Ottawa Gee Gees, runners-up to Carleton in the Ontario conference, taking on the sixth-ranked McGill Redmen; and the No. 4 seed and Canada West-champion Thunderbirds going up against fifth-seeded Acadia Axemen. The Axemen were awarded the wild-card berth to the Final 8 tournament after finishing second in the Atlantic conference.
All four quarter-finals are on Friday, with the semifinal slated for Saturday. The championship game, broadcast live on The Score, will be played Sunday at 12:30 p.m. PT.
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