Volume 93, Issue 56

Wednesday, December 8, 1999


Football coach Larry Haylor talks sports and life

Mustang track sets early season pace

Ski team and women's hockey ready for winter

Picking those Mustangs

'Twas the Sports awards of '99

Another banner year for Western Mustang teams

Picking those Mustangs

So here we are at the end of the year and its time to choose the winners of the second annual Mustang awards.

We all had our own ideas, but these are my personal picks and my reasons behind voting for them. (Try to disregard Wes and Chad, what do they know anyway?)

I really didn't have to think about who should be the best team this year – men's soccer. This wasn't because they got me a trip to Victoria and the national championships, but because they're one of the most dominant teams in Canada.

They've won the Ontario University Athletics championship four years in a row and this year, they repeated as national champions. Add the fact they had four all-Canadian all-stars and went undefeated this season – it's obvious this choice was an easy one.

For best coach, men's soccer coach Rock Basacco gets the nod. He was named coach of the year for both the OUA and the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletics Union and in the four years he's been at Western, he's turned the team into national champs. I also give special mention to women's volleyball coach Dean Lowrie as he's never lost a regular season game at Western – he just needs to bring back some gold.

For male athlete of the year, my choice is footballer Fabian Rayne. Throughout the year, he led his team to an almost perfect season. It doesn't seem like a coincidence that after he got hurt at the end of the season, the football team seemed to take a turn for the worse. Not many people would argue that Rayne was playing 100 per cent when the football team lost in the first round.

The best female athlete without doubt is Teresa Duck. The cross country runner won it all this year – in the OUAs and the CIAUs. I still remember a picture of her running this year, with the rest of the field in the distant background.

I thought the toughest choice came in the most improved team category, but in the end, the hockey team took the honour, especially considering how well they're doing this season compared to last year, when they didn't even make the playoffs.

One of the most important categories this year is of course sports editor of the year. It goes without saying that my vote goes to myself. I work hard and when it comes to crunch time I'm the go-to guy. I also smell pretty good and I have a million dollar smile. How many other editors can say that? Monkeys.

Congratulations to the winners and remember – next year, keep your eyes open for a new champion.

To Contact The Sports Department:

Copyright The Gazette 1999