author: konstantin kharitonov | sports editor
Multiple Cougars with all-star and rookie team honours
Recently, the University of Regina became a galaxy for a brief time after multiple Cougars were awarded with All-Star and All-Rookie team honours.
Kyanna Giles and Charlotte Kot were named to the All-Star teams, with Giles being on the first team and Kot being named to the third team. First-year Carolina Goncalves was named to the Canada West All-Rookie team for her efforts this season as well.
All three players have been dynamite all season for the Cougars, as all scored above 12.1 points per game average, with Giles leading at an outstanding 17.3. Giles being named to the team is the ninth time in ten years that a Cougar has been named a first-team All Star.
Jordan Kulbida of the women’s hockey team had also received All-Star honours, being named to the All-Rookie team. Kulbida was the fourth-highest scorer on the team, including a 4-point weekend in her first two appearances in a Cougars uniform.
Over on the men’s side, Brian Ofori leads the way, after being named to the All-Star third team. Ofori had a monster season, leading the way with 13.7 points per game and 7.0 rebounds per game, both first on the team.
As for rookies, Zak Zborosky gets the nod for the All-Rookie team in men’s hockey. Despite a season-ending injury in January, Zborosky finished second in team scoring with 22 points, and fourth in scoring among rookies. Just goes to show the enormous lead that he had prior to getting injured.
Overall, it has been a good showing by the Cougars in all sports. Thanks to a more successful year by average, athletes from all over are getting the love from the Canada West judges.
Brian Ofori, in particular, was humbled to be named on to the team, mentioning how much his teammates helped him to get to this point.
“It is definitely an honour to be named one of the best 15 players in Canada West, one of the toughest leagues in Canada. My team put me in a very successful position to succeed.”
And it is easy to see where the praise is coming from. The men’s basketball team had recently wrapped up its most successful season in this decade. The team had finished with an 11-9 record and had stormed their way into the Canada West playoffs.
Ofori commented on the Cougars’ success and how they gelled together as a hard working team.
“We were very versatile as a team. We had 5 guys scoring double digits, a bunch of guys doing a lot of different things. I am a very small part of a whole operating machine.”
The basketball star had praise for not just his teammates, but for his fellow school athletes, as well. When asked, Ofori had nothing but admiration for the athletes honoured.
“We have a lot of athletes accomplishing a lot. It is awesome to be part of a group like this. Its not just one or two teams that doing really well, it’s a bunch of them.”
It appears as though the feeling is mutual. With support that each of the teams provide, Ofori mentions just how the other teams have supported them over the course of the season.
“I’ve had a lot of feedback on Facebook and Instagram from a lot of other fellow Cougars, congratulating on the work that we have done. A lot of people have reached out, especially the ones that have come watch me play over the course of my career. There has been a lot of positive feedback for sure.”
The Cougars are a big community, also out there to cheer each other on in the field. In times of true success for the school and for the program, fellow athletes become the biggest fans and provide the loudest cheers.
Those cheers lead on even after a Cougar is set to move on from the school, and move on to a professional career. In the case of Ofori, who is a fifth-year arts student, that is a transition that he is ready to undertake.
With his last season of eligibility now complete, Ofori will look toward professional opportunities, potentially signing a contract in the upcoming months.
“I am looking at different agents and agencies who are looking to sign me to a professional contract. In this offseason, with the break passing, it is back to the gym to perfect my grind and my skills to become the greatest professional athlete that I can be.”
With his college career officially at an end, Ofori ends his time with the U of R with an All-Star performance, being one of many Cougar athletes named to All-Star teams this year.