Volume 93, Issue 87
Wednesday, March 15, 2000
Stars shine at York tournament
HEY NOW, I'M AN ALL-STAR, GOT MY GAME ON. Western had four men and four women featured on the OUA West all-star volleyball teams that took on the East stars last Saturday.
By Chad Thompson
The stars were shinning bright over Toronto this weekend as both the men's and women's Ontario University Athletics all-star volleyball games were played at York University.
Western had solid representation at both games. The two teams were composed of four Mustangs each, including men's setter Peter Testa, left side Mike Wilson, libero Stuart Pow and middle Andrew Rajtek. On the women's side, Western sent outside hitter Marnie Simpson, middle Sonja Janischewski, middle Katherine Kiss and setter Jen Wheeler.
Western's women's head coach Dean Lowrie and men's head coach Joffre Ribout each led one of the West teams. Lowrie's squad came out on top beating the East all-stars 3-2 (25-22, 32-30, 18-25, 25-27, 15-7). Ribout's team was not as fortunate, however and dropped a tough five set match (10-25, 17-25, 25-18, 25-20, 7-15).
Lowrie said the event was mainly a fun time for the players. "It's like any all-star game in any sport, you play with such intensity during the season, [but] there is zero intensity in the all-star game. You want everyone to play and have their friends and family watch."
The maximum number of all-stars which could have been selected from each team was four. Lowrie said Western would have had a few more members if it were not for that limit. "I feel confident we could have had seven members of the team be there."
Testa said he felt the experience was a good one. "It gives recognition for all the hard work you put in [during] the season, it's an honour, obviously. It is nice to be put into a category with some of the better players in league."
In his first year as all-star head coach, Ribout said he was nervous when he looked at the coach at the other end of the floor. "I was coaching against my mentor, Kit Lefroy the coach for Laurentian [University] he is the guy who got me into coaching."
With each team getting only a single practice session, Ribout added it was nice to have a few familiar faces around. "At least I knew a few of the guys. You know a fair bit about the players [from other teams] because you have been playing against them all year.
"To me all-star games are a lot of fun. We had two lineups based on the voting and we let them play the four games the fifth match we mixed the lineup 'cause we wanted to go for the win," he said.
"It is a different type of event," said Doug Dodd, OUA convenor, who explained the game was mainly for the players." It is a good event for the players and it is nice to have the good players playing together.
"Like someone said to me, 'It is a small celebration of the season.' It is more of a question what it means to the athletes and I think they enjoyed it," Dodd added.
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