Cascades’ Wierks earns Canada West, CIS athlete of the week awards

047The accolades just keep pouring in for Sarah Wierks.

On Tuesday, the 6’2″ fifth-year centre with the University of the Fraser Valley women’s basketball team was named the Canada West female first star of the week. It was the second time she’s won the award in three weeks.

On Wednesday, the Chilliwack native found out she’d also been selected by Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) as their female athlete of the week, an award which encompasses university sports programs from coast to coast.

Wierks was honoured after authoring a pair of outstanding performances in weekend wins over the UBC Okanagan Heat.

On Friday, she registered 22 points, 18 rebounds and two blocks to pace the Cascades to a 70-67 win over the Heat. In the first quarter, she moved into second place on the all-time Canada West rebounding list, passing former Calgary Dinos great Janis Paskevich (912 total rebounds).

On Saturday, Wierks was even better – she racked up 22 points, 19 rebounds, a team-record seven blocks and four steals in a thoroughly dominating performance as the Cascades won 77-65. She’s now accumulated 945 rebounds in her distinguished career, trailing only ex-Saskatchewan Huskies star Sarah Crooks (1,181 rebounds) on the all-time list.

Wierks currently leads the entire CIS in rebounds per game (14.5), a mark which would tie her with Jodi Evans (Calgary Dinos, 1990-91) for the highest average over the course of a single season in Canada West history.

The weekend wins enabled the Cascades (8-6) to tighten their grip on third place in the Explorer Division. They hit the road this week for a Saturday-Sunday set in Calgary vs. the Mount Royal Cougars, and can clinch a playoff berth if they win both games.

Alana Serhan (Manitoba Bisons, hockey) and Christina Campbell (MacEwan Griffins, volleyball) were the Canada West female second and third stars of the week, respectively. The male three stars were Tommy Nixon (UBC Thunderbirds, basketball), Aspen Sterzer (Calgary Dinos, hockey) and Devin McMurtry (UNBC Timberwolves, basketball).

Wierks became the first female athlete to be named Canada West first star twice this season. On the men’s side, UBC’s Nixon is the only one to accomplish the feat.

For the CIS award, Wierks beat out fellow nominees Marisa Mota (AUS, Dalhousie volleyball), Ariane Barker (RSEQ, Montreal hockey) and Sasha Gollish (OUA, Toronto track and field).

Top Ten Tuesday

A fresh batch of CIS and CCAA rankings arrived on Tuesday morning, and the Cascades men’s wrestling team maintained its grip on the CIS No. 1 spot for a second straight week.

• The UFV men, who ascended to the top spot in the CIS national wrestling poll for the first time in program history last week, stayed there this week as the top nine spots in the rankings remained unchanged.

• The Cascades men’s basketball team dropped one spot from No. 7 to No. 8 in the CIS ranking this week, despite remaining undefeated at 14-0 and winning both of their weekend home games vs. UBC Okanagan.

• The UFV women’s volleyball squad, coming off a weekend split with the Vancouver Island University Mariners, slipped from No. 9 to No. 11 in the CCAA national rankings. The Mariners also saw their stock dip slightly in the aftermath, falling from No. 13 to No. 14.

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The University of the Fraser Valley is situated on the unceded traditional territory of the Stó:lō peoples. The Stó:lō have an intrinsic relationship with what they refer to as S’olh Temexw (Our Sacred Land); therefore, we express our gratitude and respect for the honour of living and working in this territory.

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