Evan Daum, Canada West Communications
- The Canada West AGM wrapped up Thursday in Lethbridge, with the membership accepting a new playoff format for women’s soccer, beginning this fall
- A new playoff structure for basketball and volleyball has also been accepted for 2017-18
- Final Four tournaments will be replaced with single-game championships in both basketball and volleyball, while women’s soccer is moving from a six-team tournament to a four-team format
LETHBRIDGE, Alta. – Following the conclusion of the 2017 Canada West annual general meeting in Lethbridge, the conference announced several new playoff formats for the upcoming 2017-18 season.
Change is coming to both the men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball playoffs, as well as women’s soccer.
On the court, there will no longer be conference Final Four tournaments in either basketball, or volleyball. Instead, the conference playoffs will lead to a single conference championship game, ensuring a host participates for conference gold, which was not guaranteed under the existing format. The number of playoff teams in basketball (12) will not change, while the number of volleyball playoff teams will increase from seven to eight this season.
Conference membership voted to accept the updated basketball and volleyball playoff formats earlier this year.
The changes mark a departure from the existing Final Four formats in both sports, which had been in place since 2001-02 in men’s basketball, 2002-03 in women’s basketball, and 2002-03 in both men’s and women’s volleyball.
In addition to the changes to the basketball and volleyball playoff formats, the conference will also have a new women’s soccer playoff structure for the upcoming season. The revamped playoff format is highlighted by the implementation of a Final Four tournament, replacing the existing Select Six championship tournament, which had been in place for the previous two seasons. The number of playoff teams (12) will remain the same in 2016.
The new women’s soccer format features two weeks of competition, as a pair of teams in each division will host preliminary round games, as well as quarter-final action. Four teams will then advance to the Final Four the following week, to be hosted by the highest remaining seed (top Prairie team hosts in 2017 and top Pacific team hosts in 2018).
A complete look at each playoff format can be found here.