Windsor's five-year title reign is on life support, of course, after their semifinal loss on Friday. Chantal Vallée, needless to say, is owed a debt for raising the bar in the women's game.
- McGill Martlets (RSEQ champion) — No. 1, with a bullet. Host Laval for the Q banner at 3 p.m. on Saturday.
- Saskatchewan Huskies (Canada West champion)* — Holy hot take bait, Huskies! Actually, coach Lisa Thomaidis was sage to run her first V for 32-plus minutes apiece, as the bench did not even score one basket during their 78-68 qualifying win against Alberta. Sabine Dukate was on all cylinders like her finally crafted two-wheeled namesake, hooping 29 with a 76.7% eFG.
Basically going five deep does not seem like Why do you do that in the Huskies' position? Ensuring you're on the plane to Fredericton is paramount, and the U of S has a good enough case for a 3 seed even as the Canada West runner-up.
You have to win the one in front of you. Otherwise it's like a football coach pulling his star running back who's banged up from a close playoff game because they're going to need him the following week. Who does that? Oh, right.
- Saint Mary's Huskies (AUS champion)* — Good luck to the commentators who end up calling a Huskies-Huskies semifinal.
- Ryerson Rams (OUA champion)* — Rare to see a 13-assist game at any time of year in CIS, but RU's Keneca Pingue-Giles pulled that off on Friday.
To reiterate: Ryerson has never won an OUA basketball title, and the female and male teams could complete the double on the same night. The last double was more recent than one might think: McMaster, in 2006.
I dare Ryerson to make that the trivia contest answer during the first media timeout of the Wilson Cup.
- Regina Cougars (Canada West runner-up)* — Held off game MacEwan and Megan Wood.
- Alberta Pandas (at large, Canada West bronze medal) — The 4-7 slots are in flux until those 6 p.m. ET neutral-floor bronze games, Mac-Windsor and MacEwan-Alberta.
- Ottawa Gee-Gees (OUA runner-up)* — Twenty-five offensive rebounds? That is ... gritty.
Fun fact: the Ottawa-Mac women's basketball playoff game had one fewer point (56-42 Gees) than the same schools' football game (57-42 Marauders).
Another Gees-inspired tangent, stemming from Sparks' Sprites having two sets of same-named starters with Kellie Forand, Kellie Ring, Katherine Lemoine and Catherine Traer. There's a Netflix series to be made about a high school math teacher who turns around a perennially struggling girls basketball team by installing a full-court press and using analytics to develop twins who shoot corner threes. Rob Pettapiece is attached to this project, although he does not know that yet.
- UNB Varsity Reds (host)* — Jeff Speedy. Great coach name, or greatest coach name?
(* already qualified)