Regina Okoye (34) drives the ball during a game against North Dakota on Jan. 30.  (Photo by Ariana Berkemeier / The Signpost)
Regina Okoye (34) drives the ball during a game against North Dakota on Jan. 30. (Photo by Ariana Berkemeier / The Signpost)

Basketball season is winding down and for the first time in several years both the Weber State University men’s and women’s teams are poised to reach the Big Sky Conference Championships in the same season. With seven games left for both teams, here are four things to pay attention to down the stretch.

Regina Okoye leads the nation

On the women’s basketball team, junior Regina Okoye is a steals machine. After picking up two steals against Idaho State on Saturday, Okoye continues to lead the nation in steals per game, averaging 3.91 per game. With a new career-high of 86 steals so far this season, Okoye is only 16 steals away from setting the Wildcats’ single-season steals record. If she sets the single-season record, it will be the third record she has set this year, having already broke the single-game steals record (10 against San Diego) and the career steals record (246 through Saturday’s game).

Wildcats in the championships for ninth straight year

Barring a collapse of epic proportions, the men’s basketball team will be playing in the Big Sky Championships for the ninth year in a row under coach Randy Rahe. Since Rahe took over the team in 2006, the Wildcats are 10-6 in the conference championships and have won two championship titles. This year the Big Sky Conference Championships will consist of the top eight teams in the conference, and after their win at Idaho State on Saturday, the Wildcats are now tied for sixth place.

Women’s basketball on verge of ending seven year playoff drought

Currently tied for seventh place in the Big Sky Conference, the women’s basketball team is making a push for the championships for the first time since the 2006-07 season. After making the Big Sky Championships every season from 1995-96 to 2006-07, the Wildcats are poised to compete once again this year. The last time Weber State won the championships was in the 2002-03 season when they defeated Montana State University 63-52 to grab their second Big Sky title in a row.

Wildcats search for back-to-back conference titles for first time since 1980

The men’s basketball team will be playing to defend their Big Sky title they won last season after defeating University of North Dakota 88-67 in the championship game. Despite having success in the Big Sky tournaments, the Wildcats have not won back-to-back titles since 1980 when they won their third straight conference title. Since then, the Wildcats have averaged one conference title roughly every seven seasons.

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