From A to Zia: New Women's Basketball Recruit Has the Court Covered
The CMU Women's Basketball program is very pleased to announce the commitment of versatile two-way player Zia Dacara for the 2022-23 MCAC and NIAC seasons. The St James Collegiate product comes to CMU with a championship-winning mentality that will fit in well with the recent success of the program.
Dacara brings a versatility to the Blazers, having played point guard in junior varsity and centre in her first year of varsity, with an athleticism that allows her to play up and down the lineup.
The newest Blazers women's basketball recruit is coming off one of the most successful MHSAA seasons ever, helping her St James Jimmies to an incredible undefeated season; winning the Stonewall tournament en route to divisional and provincial AAA championship titles. The provincial title game saw the team defeat the Dauphin Clippers 51-35 in Brandon, where Dacara was also named a graduating all-star.
The Jimmies star put her versatility on full display throughout her high school career and contributed on more than just the basketball court, as she also played on the school's volleyball team (for which she was also named graduating all-star), placed fifth in provincials in doubles badminton, participated on the track and field team, and also featured on the school's soccer and beach volleyball squads. Dacara was named junior varsity athlete of the year in her grade ten year, and also grew her leadership potential throughout high school having captained the Jimmies volleyball team during her time at St James.
Dacara's high school coach, Ashley Van Eglen, weighed in on the Blazers' recent signing, stating "Zia is a natural leader both on the court and in the classroom. She is a competitor who makes those around her better. She is a converted point guard in junior varsity to a starting post in varsity, which shows she is a threat from both the outside and the paint. Her two-way game and quick transition helped the Jimmies win a provincial championship this year, and I am looking forward to seeing her push the pace even more at the college level."
Her connection to CMU started in her grade nine year with a school visit from the university's admissions counsellors, but being familiar with some of her Blazer teammates, including fellow St James grad Brianna Ehrmantraut, also helped her make the decision to don the green and gold while pursuing science studies at CMU. "Zia will be a very welcome addition to the Blazers," notes Blazers head coach Joe DiCurzio, who is excited about the versatility and athleticism of his latest signing. "Zia has played almost every position in the last few years, and also many sports at her school which makes her a very versatile player which fits in exactly into the Blazer system. Zia is also known as a very good, tough defensive player who excels at rbounding. She will bring her championship mentatlity and experience from St James Collegiate, which will also really fit in well with the Blazer championship culture."
After winning their fourth consecutive MCAC Basketball Championship, Dacara and her new Blazer teammates will look to defend their provincial title again for the upcoming 2022-23 MCAC season. With border crossing regulations and restrictions to the states set to loosen, CMU is poised to rejoin the NIAC conference next season in a condensed format with matchups against the other private colleges in the league that includes teams from Minnesota as well as North and South Dakota before a championship tournament to cap off the year. The Blazers captured their first ever NIAC title in 2020, their most recent season in the conference prior to the COVID-19 border closures that quashed the team's chances of defending their title when basketball returned to play this past season.