Carly Graham has an opportunity of a lifetime
Carly Graham, a fifth-year guard for the University of Regina women’s basketball team, has an opportunity to do what every player dreams of: going out on top.
Graham is currently in her final year as a Cougar, but ironically, it is only her second year as a member of the Green and Gold.
Graham transferred to the Cougars after playing three years at Simon Fraser, but when the Clan decided to part ways from the CIS and move into NCAA Division II, Graham said goodbye to her hometown university and hello to the University of Regina.
The move appears to have been the right one for Graham, whose team currently sits first in the country with a 15-0 record. Even though her time with the Cougars has been limited, she is still a veteran in the dressing room.
“As a senior your role always changes,” Graham said. “I have always been a three-point shooter, but as a senior it changes to making sure everyone is OK and the team dynamic is good and chemistry is good and stuff like that.”
The dynamic and chemistry seem to have reached the pinnacle for the Cougars, but even with their undefeated record, Graham admits this is a been-there-done-that situation.
“[The undefeated record] is not something that you can focus on,” she said. “It’s not a factor that can become a problem so you have to take it one game at a time.”
With just five regular-season games to play until the countdown to nationals finally begins, Graham can only imagine how sweet it would be to finish her final year of CIS eligibility ranked No. 1 in the nation.
Graham and the rest of the Cougars came into Friday’s contest prepared to go to war with the Winnipeg Wesmen (8-7), but they quite easily won the battle. Regina improved to 14-0 after topping the Wesmen 86-42 backed by strong performances by Michelle Clarke and Lindsay Ledingham, who had 14 and 12 points, respectively.
The second night seemed like déja vu for the lady Cougars, as they were able to gain a lead on the Wesmen early in the first quarter. From there, it was smooth sailing for Regina on its way to a 98-71 victory. Ledingham and Clarke once again put up big numbers for the Cougars with 22 and 18 points apiece.
Two impressive performances this weekend have pushed the team’s record to 15-0, something that every member of the team is pleased with, including Graham.
“I think we played well, I think we played as a team,” she said. “I think that we moved the ball well. We made some funny choices, but we made up for it with our effort.”
The Cougars will look to push their record to an astounding 17-0 when the Alberta Panda’s (11-5) are in town this weekend. Games are slated for 6:15 p.m. on Friday and Saturday at the Centre for Kinesiology, Health and Sport.