The Ryersonian spoke with fifth-year Rams basketball guard Keneca Pingue-Giles at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) Final 8 in Fredericton, to discuss the competition and being named CIS Player of the Year.
You’re back at Nationals, how does it feel?
It feels great. It also feels much better that we’ve actually won an OUA (Ontario University Athletics) championship, so we have that under our belt. And the fact that this is our second year in a row, we have this experience, and we’re going to utilize that experience and make it to the championship side and go on to make history here at Ryerson.
How do you feel going into today’s game against Regina?
I feel excited, I know it’s the four-five matchup so it’s going to be a tough game. But I think if we bring our physicality, that defensive intensity that we brought to the (OUA) Final Four weekend and the all-around team effort, we should be successful.
Last night, obviously, you won CIS Player of the Year, first Ryerson female athlete to do that. How did that feel?
I mean, it felt amazing. I didn’t really know that was going to happen — I had no idea. But it’s great that all my hard work has been recognized by the CIS and the coaches in the CIS. But as I said last night, it wouldn’t have been possible without all the support I get from my family, teammates, therapists and coaches.
Did you even think that you were going to win?
No, I didn’t even think about it to be honest. I knew there was going to be a banquet and I thought I would get a First-Team All-Canadian, but this I had no idea, so it was a pleasant surprise.
Portions of this interview were edited for length and clarity.