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Clan’s weekend of champions

March 5, 2009

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The SFU Clan men’s wrestling team captured their first national title since joining Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) in 2002-03, while the women’s team finished second overall, at the 2009 CIS national championships Feb. 28 at the University of Calgary.

Also on Feb. 28, the No. 1 ranked Clan women’s basketball team chalked up their 27th straight win, defeating the University of Regina Cougars 68–57 to take gold at the 2009 Canada West finals. The Alberta Pandas defeated the Saskatchewan Huskies for bronze. All four teams advance to the CIS national championships in Regina Mar. 5-7.

In wrestling, the men’s victory ended a 10-year winning streak—the second longest in CIS history—held by the Brock Badgers, who edged out the Concordia Stingers for second place. (UBC’s women’s swim team won a record 11 straight CIS titles from 1998 to 2008.)

The Clan win followed gold medal performances by Arjan Bhullar who defeated Guelph’s Kyle Grant in the 130kg and Isaac Wing who won his first title against Regina’s Kyle Bershatsky in the 65kg weight class. The men also secured silver medals from Ali Al-Rekabi (90kg), Clete Hanson (82kg) and Raj Virdi (61kg) to score 70 team points overall.

The women wrestlers finished No. 2 behind Calgary with fifth-year senior Ashley McKilligan defending her national title in the 48kg weight class against Regina’s Hajar Ashtiani.

Rita Pare (55kg) and Stacie Anaka (67kg) both took silver. Calgary dominated with six gold medals at the tournament. Next weekend Bhullar could become the first Clan wrestler to win both a CIS and National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) title when he competes at the 2009 NAIA National Championships in Oklahoma City.

SFU head wrestling coach Justin Abdou was named the CIS Coach of the Year for the first time in his career, while the Clan’s Rafiq Charania earned the R.W. Pugh Fair Play Award.

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Charlie Pickering

i am justin abdou's cousin :D

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