Women's university hockey action.

Moving Women’s Sports from the Margins to the Living Room

Published on Elle Beaver March 20, 2014


Close to 13 million Canadians tuned in to watch the women’s hockey gold medal game at last month’s Olympics, with a peak of 6.37 million viewers in the dying minutes when Canada mounted their incredible comeback against the U.S.

During the previous summer games in London, 3.8 million watched the semi-final soccer match between the same two nations.

So please, say again that women’s sports are boring. Or that the players aren’t as athletic or skilled. Or the games aren’t competitive.

The numbers don’t lie. It has been a slow progression, but Canadians are showing that such criticisms are outdated, and more to the point, founded in thin air.

With the Canadian Interuniversity Sport winter championship season in full swing, Rogers has reached out to provide Canada’s top student athletes a national stage. Two weeks ago, the men’s basketball championship was broadcast on Sportsnet, while the semi-finals were on Sportsnet360. This past weekend, the women’s basketball tournament had two semis and one final game on SN360, while the women’s hockey gold medal game was also broadcast on SN360.

Of course, the fact that Rogers’ SportsnetU programming is showing any winter championships is progress in and of itself, as broadcasting anything aside OUA football games of the week and national football playoffs was generally unheard of before this year.

Taking on a new direction, however, Sportsnet broadcasted the semi-finals and title games of the men’s and women’s basketball and men’s hockey championships, as well as the final game of the women’s hockey championship. It’s high time that our amateur student athletes get a greater national spotlight, but in a hockey crazy market that broadcasts the Tier II Junior “A” championship tournament across the country, the fact that the university championship for basketball is shown cannot be understated in itself.

When you add in the lack of media coverage for women’s professional sports (like the CWHL and WNBA), the fact that our female university stars can shine on such a stage is even more important.

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Top Programs Kick Off Basketball Season in Ottawa

Published on The CIS Blog on November 6, 2013.

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Some of the top men’s and women’s basketball programs in the country opened their seasons in Ottawa this past weekend, including both defending CIS champions. Here’s our recap of those games:

Tough Start for Windsor

Following a strong regular season that saw them finish atop of the OUA West last season, the Windsor Lancers looked to rebound from a disappointing missed opportunity to play in the CIS Final 8 basketball championship last season as they lost to Lakehead in the OUA bronze medal game. However, things looked optimistic for the Lancers, who entered the season ranked sixth in the nation. Unfortunately for them, the schedulers weren’t so kind, forcing Windsor to open their season on the road at the opposite end of the province against the no. 1 Carleton Ravens and no. 3 Ottawa Gee-Gees.

Coming off of their ninth national championship in the past eleven years, it should be no surprise that the Ravens entered the season ranked atop of the CIS Top Ten. Led by legendary coach Dave Smart and a returning class of standouts including Phil and Thomas Scrubb, as well as Tyson Hinz, Carleton looks poised to contend in achieving their campaign of “Again for Ten.”

It was a high-profile affair to kick off the season at the Raven’s Nest, with a good-sized crowd walking into the arena on a red carpet draped with Ravens cheerleaders on either side while the band provided a traditional university sport soundtrack. A rendition of the national anthem before the game topped off the classy beginning, and the game began.

It took only four seconds for Carleton to put up their first points of the season, as Thomas Scrubb dunked the ball on a fast break off of tip-off. From there, Carleton never looked back, in a game that didn’t see a single lead change. Windsor was able to keep it close through the first quarter, trailing only 23-16.

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