The 2016-17 Canada West volleyball schedule will be another gruelling 24-match affair for the UBC Okanagan teams.
It will be the UBC Okanagan volleyball teams’ sixth season in Canada West starting this October, and while the women will be looking to maintain their presence at the fore of the national stage, the men's squad will be working to return to the Canada West postseason for the first time since their debut season with the conference in 2011-12.
The 2016-17 schedule features another 24 match slate, a marathon by general CIS standards, that the Heat are familiar with after the previous season.
The home schedule has an interesting feature for Kelowna fans. The Heat will host a single weekend of competitions once a month, in every month from October through January. The Heat will host on two weekends in February with any post season home dates to take place in early March.
As defending Canada West regular season champions and national bronze medalists, the Heat women will be looking to stay on top despite having six of their core athletes graduate at the end of last season. And the men, after 10 wins in the last two seasons combined, will once again attempt to capture a post season berth, a first since 2011/12, will feature a core group of senior players to contend with.
The Heat will open the season up at home for the second straight year when the Brandon Bobcats visit the Okanagan October 28-29. A Bye week and then volleyball will return to the UBC Okanagan hardwood when they host the Manitboa Bisons November 11-12.
The final home matches of 2016 will be when the Heat host the Dinos from the University of Calgary on December 2-3, prior to that the UBC Okanagan volleyball teams will have travelled east twice for a pair of weekend contests' all against Cougars. The first road matches are at Mount Royal in Calgary (November 16-17) and then to the Queen City, Regina, Sask., to match up against U of R.
Rivalries matches will be a regular occurrence when the calendar shifts to 2017.
To open the New Year the campus to campus matches will take place when the Heat invade War Memorial (January 6-7) to play the Thunderbirds. This match, always hotly contested, will take on a bit more relevance on the women's side this year. The Heat women's team had never beaten the T-birds prior to 2015-16 only to defeat UBC every time last season culminating in their bronze medal victory at the CIS national championship last March in Brandon, MB.
After a trip to Winnipeg to face the Wesmen (January 13-14) the Heat will return home to play the Trinity Western Spartans. The Spartans are the defending champion on the men's side and the last time the women played on the UBC Okanagan court the Spartans upended the Heat for the Canada West championships. The Heat will have this January 20-21 matchup circled on their calendar.
The first week of February will have the Heat hosting matches on February 3-4 against the Saskatchewan Huskies before heading to Edmonton to square off against the University of Alberta (February 10-11).
They return for another one of their marquee matchups of the year to host valley rival Thompson Rivers on Saturday Feburary 18. The interior of BC rivalry always draws large and electric crowds from both the Kelowna and Kamloops communities every year, the contest on Saturday will follow a Thurssday night match between these programs in Kamloops.
For the second straight season UBC Okanagan will have home dates to bookend the season and will have their home crowd to aid in any end-of-season chances at the playoffs, hosting the MacEwan Griffins February 24-25.
If the either Heat team qualifies for another playoff berth they will begin competition in the Canada West quarter-finals a week later then last year as the post season starts in March. The quarter-finals are set for the weekend of March 3-5, barring a first-place finish which nets the team an automatic bye to the Canada West Final Four and hosting rights. The Final Four will be March 10-11.
The Men’s CIS championships will be hosted this year by U of A from March 16-18. The Heat women hope to return to the national championship, this year hosted at Ryerson in Toronto on the same weekend as the men.
For more information on schedules and up-to-date game times please visit www.goheat.ca.
All Canada West volleyball games, as well as live stats, can be viewed online at canadawest.tv.
Canada West Media Release: http://www.canadawest.org/cwest/2016-17/releases/20160622volleyballsched
Heat Home Volleyball Schedule:
|Fri Oct 28||Brandon||6pm (W) 8pm (M)|
|Sat Oct 29||Brandon||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|
|Fri Nov 11||Manitoba||6pm (W) 8pm (M)|
|Sat Nov 12||Manitoba||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|
|Fri Dec 2||Calgary||6pm (W) 8pm (M)|
|Sat Dec 3||Calgary||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|
|Fri Jan 20||Trinity Western||6pm (W) 8pm (M)|
|Sat Jan 21||Trinity Western||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|
|Fri Feb 3||Saskatchewan||6pm (W) 8pm (M)|
|Sat Feb 4||Saskatchewan||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|
|Sat Feb 18||Thompson Rivers||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|
|Fri Feb 24||MacEwan||6pm (W) 8pm (M)|
|Sat Feb 25||MacEwan||5pm (W) 7pm (M)|