Welcome to Weekend Watch, your weekly preview of all the best U SPORTS action that can’t be missed across Canada West, the OUA, RSEQ and AUS.
For U SPORTS Football Weekend Watch, click here.
UNB @ Saint Mary’s
Friday, 6 p.m. ET/ 3 p.m. PT
The defending David Johnston University Cup national champion UNB Reds host rival Saint Mary’s Friday in the opening weekend of AUS men’s hockey. The two schools have combined for 29 Atlantic conference titles, with UNB looking to win its third straight and seventh in the last 10 years.
Reds captain Marcus McIvor is back for a fifth and final year of eligibility, looking to lead the team to another championship. The defenceman has notched 29 points (six goals, 23 assists) in 89 regular season games and was named a tournament all-star at the 2019 Cavendish Farms University Cup in Lethbridge, Alta.
Meanwhile, Saint Mary’s will turn to second-year defenceman Nick Welsh for both defensive and offensive output. Last year, the blueliner scored 29 points in as many games for the Huskies, earning the Halifax native a spot on the U SPORTS All-rookie team.
UNB will also visit Acadia on Saturday night.
Alberta @ UBC
Friday and Saturday, 10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT
Canada West TV Presented by Co-op
In Canada West action, reigning conference champion and U SPORTS silver medalist Alberta visits UBC to kick off the new campaign. The Golden Bears are looking for their fourth University Cup title in seven years, after losing to UNB in the championship match last season.
The Thunderbirds met the Golden Bears in a pair of preseason contests in early September. Alberta took both games, extending their overall win streak over UBC to five.
No. 3 StFX @ No. 5 Acadia
Friday, 6 p.m. ET / 3 p.m. PT
The top two women’s rugby teams in the AUS square off this Friday, in what is slated to be a heated matchup between two unbeaten sides.
The Acadia Axewomen (3-0-0) host conference rival StFX (3-0-0) in Wolfville, N.S for the first meeting since last season’s AUS championship match won by StFX. The two sides have since played twice in the preseason, with the X-Women taking both games.
Acadia is coming off a commanding 41-14 victory against Saint Mary’s, where seven different players scored tries. The Axewomen will look to keep the ball rolling against the X-Women, who are also coming off a decisive victory against UPEI. StFX triumphed 65-5, thanks in part to a pair of tries from fourth-year veteran Sara McCarron.
No. 4 Ottawa @ No. 2 Laval
Saturday, 1 p.m. ET/ 10 a.m. PT
Another battle between powerhouse teams is taking place this weekend, as the Laval Rouge et Or play host to RSEQ rivals in the Ottawa Gee-Gees at TELUS-UL Stadium.
In the first meeting between the squads, the Rouge et Or (4-0-0) won a hard-fought battle 28-17 over the Gee-Gees (2-1-1). Despite leading 14-0 at halftime, Ottawa succumbed to Laval’s explosive offence, led by Nele Pien, who scored three tries in the second half.
Ottawa will be leaning on Michaela Haley to provide for the Gee-Gees offensively. The fourth-year human kinetics major has scored a whopping nine tries in just four matches.
The OUA regular season will also come to a close Sunday afternoon as teams jockey for final positions ahead of the playoffs next weekend.
No. 4 Montreal @ No. 5 Laval
Friday, 6 p.m. ET/ 3 p.m. PT
A top-five battle is slated to take place between RSEQ heavyweights this Friday, as the Montreal Carabins are welcomed by the Laval Rouge et Or.
Laval (6-1-1) has won their last two games, after sustaining their only loss of the season to the unbeaten UQAM Citadins (7-0-0). Coming off of a pair of 3-0 victories against Sherbrook and UQTR, the Rouge et Or will be looking to stay in the win column versus their RSEQ rivals.
Meanwhile, Montreal (5-1-1) is undefeated in their last three games and will turn to Megane Sauve for offence. Sauve currently leads Montreal in scoring, with six goals and 10 points in seven games.
The last meeting between the two Quebec-based squads ended in a scoreless draw, and fans can expect this meeting to be just as tight.
No. 8 UBC @ No. 2 Trinity Western
Saturday, 8 p.m. ET/ 5 p.m. PT
Two undefeated teams take the field Saturday in an exciting Canada West Pacific showdown between UBC Thunderbirds (4-0-2) and Trinity Western Spartans (5-0-1).
UBC has been stout on defence, allowing only one goal through six games on the season. Goalkeeper Emily Moore has done her share to help the No. 8 team in the nation, turning away 23 shots this season and adding five clean sheets.
The Spartans have been balanced on offence so far this season, with four players having scored at least three goals through the first six games of the campaign.
In their previous meeting, UBC and Trinity Western played to a 0-0 draw in the season opener.
No. 3 York @ No. 9 Guelph
Sunday, 3:15 pm. ET / 12:15 p.m. PT
The Guelph Gryphons host the top-ranked team in the OUA West this weekend, taking on the York Lions on Sunday.
The Gryphons (4-1-2) will turn to their maestro in the midfield, Alexander Zis, who has four goals and a national-best nine assists on the season.
York (5-0-1) will be the Gryphons’ toughest test of the season thus far, as the undefeated Lions have outscored their opponents 21-3 on the year, winning all five of their games since the two teams played to a draw in the season opener.