By Christie Melhorn, January 10 2018 —
For the University of Calgary Dinos, 2017 was rich with defining moments. The women’s rugby team won their third consecutive Canada West (CW) championship title, kicker Nike DiFonte’s 59-yard field goal broke U Sports records and women’s hockey coach Danielle Goyette became the fifth female Hockey Hall of Fame inductee. This year will likely hold just as many noteworthy experiences that you can be a part of. The following are great opportunities to escape school stress and show support for the U of C’s student athletes.
Every year since 2012, a highly anticipated series of cross-town rivalry games between the Dinos and the Mount Royal Cougars take place in the new year. The men’s and women’s hockey, volleyball and soccer teams fight hard to take home the signature City of Calgary manhole trophy. Both universities always bring a solid effort — but the Dinos collectively hold the record for most points scored across all the games played by the participating teams.
Taking place in the Scotiabank Saddledome on Jan. 25, the men’s and women’s hockey team’s Crowchild classic is probably the most widely anticipated event. The Saddledome’s size and sound system adds an extra layer of excitement and intensity to the games. The women’s tea, sets the tone for an energetic evening involving in-game contests and post-game activities when they start at 4 p.m. The men take to ice at 6:45 p.m. Students can attend for free and tickets can be found online at godinos.com — act quickly because they go fast.
The Crowchild Classic shifts to the Jack Simpson Gym on Feb. 16 for the men’s and women’s volleyball double-header. While the setting might not be as grandiose as the Saddledome, the team’s force on the court is equally as invigorating and fun to watch. The women’s game starts at 6 p.m. and the men’s match follows at 7:30 p.m.
The dates and times for the soccer Crowchild Classic are still to be determined. However, it generally takes place in early to mid-September and makes for an enjoyable fall afternoon spent outdoors.
Pack the Jack:
Pack the Jack is the annual Dinos basketball classic that livens up campus at the start of the winter semester. The Jack Simpson Gym is fitted with extra amenities and flare for the event, last year featuring courtside couches and popcorn. Multiple giveaways and free swag will be available to rev up your school spirit. Last year, both the men’s and women’s basketball teams rocked the court against the University of Fraser Valley Cascades, winning 106–68 and 69–59 respectively. As the men’s team is standing at 14–2 and the women at 14–5 on the season, this year’s Pack the Jack promises vicious plays and passion. The women’s team takes the court at 6 p.m. and the men come on at 8 p.m. Students can attend for free and general admission is $15.
Women’s Rugby Sevens Series:
Canada West teamed up with B2ten and Rugby Canada to launch the first women’s rugby sevens series tournament in January 2017 in Edmonton. The three-part tournament is designed to support female rugby players at six western Canadian institutions by providing scholarship and networking opportunities. The games are fierce and the intensity is high. The Dinos dominated last year’s sevens series with a sweeping 26–5 win over the University of Alberta Pandas in the final, showcasing their resiliency and competitiveness. Key Dinos players such as arts major and prop DaLeaka Menin and kinesiology major and hooker Emily Tuttosi are graduating this year, promising some serious plays on the pitch.
The first tournament takes place in Edmonton at the newly opened Foote Field from Jan. 20–21. While it’s a bit of stretch to attend live, it presents a chance for a mini road-trip before the semester picks up. The second part of the tournament is in Abbotsford, British Columbia from Feb. 10–11 and finishes in Victoria from Feb. 24–25. For those heading to B.C. over reading week, it’s worth stopping by to support for Dinos. If attending the tournaments is out of the question, you can stream the games live from candawest.yaretv.com for $4.99 per game.