VIU hoops back on home court

Vancouver Island University’s men’s and women’s basketball teams return to home court this Friday (Jan. 23) and Saturday.

VIU Mariners centre Jerod Dorby lays in the basketball during practice Tuesday night.

VIU Mariners centre Jerod Dorby lays in the basketball during practice Tuesday night.

The VIU Mariners basketball teams had the sort of strong starts to the season that allow them to have high hopes, now, in the  new year.

Vancouver Island University’s men’s and women’s basketball teams return to home court this Friday (Jan. 23) and Saturday in Pacific Western Athletic Association action. The Capilano Blues visit Friday night and the Quest Kermodes come to town Saturday.

VIU’s teams resumed PacWest play last week on the Lower Mainland. The men lost one and won one and recognize the things they need to do better.

“We played hard, we played with a lot of effort. Some of the effort stats, like rebounding, getting to the free throw line, those kind of things, we did a good job,” said Matt Kuzminski, coach of the VIU men.

Execution wasn’t at its best, but players planned this week to listen to coaches and come willing to work as a team, said Chris Parker, VIU player.

“We’re just trying to build on what we can and try to take advantage of every day and every practice,” he said. “That’s what we’re focusing on right now, just getting better.”

The Mariners women started the new year with two wins last weekend and they’ll have to play well this week to keep the streak going, said coach Bill McWhinnie.

“It’s two good teams that like to run,” he said. “We’re going to have to get back in transition; we’re going to have to rebound the basketball.”

VIU forward Jenna Carver, the PacWest Athlete of the Week, said her team is looking forward to being back on home court and will take the weekend’s games one at a time.

“We just need to focus on what we do best, play good D, limit our turnovers and play with heart,” she said.

GAME ON … Friday’s women’s game is at 6 p.m., followed by the men’s game at 8 p.m. On Saturday, the ladies play at 1 p.m. with the men to take the court at 3 p.m … Look for more on Carver in an upcoming issue of the News Bulletin.

sports@nanaimobulletin.com