Volume 94, Issue 80
Wednesday, February 14, 2001
The Western men's squash team continued their dominance on the courts by capturing their 18th consecutive Ontario University Athletics Team Squash Championship at McMaster University on Sunday. It is their 28th team title since 1951.
"Our tradition of winning really means a lot and it's extra motivation for us to win. It also means that everyone wants to beat us," said Western head coach Jack Fairs.
Leading the men's team to a 5-1 victory over Queen's was Andrew Jones, who won the OUA Individual Championship last week in Toronto. Jones also earned himself first-team OUA All-Star honours along with fellow teammates Tim Loat, Jamie Nicholls, and Ryan Haider. Jonathon Dale was chosen as a second-team all-star.
"We had some injury problems. Some of our top players were out, but we have a very well-balanced and solid team, and the other players came in and really performed well," Fairs said.
The Western women had their own reason to celebrate this Sunday as they also came away with the OUA Team Squash Championship. It was their second championship in three years and their fifth since 1985.
"Because we are a young team, team spirit was big. Although we were the number one seed, we didn't expect to win," said 10th seed player, Joanna Suan.
Leading the women to a 4-2 victory over second-seeded Toronto was Leah Bishop. Bishop was named a first-team OUA All-Star along with teammate Leanne Devos. Second-team All-Stars for the Western women were Tara Turner, Wendy Oliver, and Vannessa Steinwall.
Despite having a strong performance at this year's Ontario University Athletics Championships, both of Western's swim teams and other schools' were always a length behind as the Toronto Varsity Blues took victory for both the men and women in convincing fashion.
The Varsity Blues went to the top of the podium for 25 of the meet's 40 events and also took gold in every relay event at the Toronto meet.
"Toronto was absolutely dominant," said Western head coach Glen Belfry.
Western's women finished fifth, while the men were able to walk away with a seventh place finish. The lady Mustangs were able to top their score from last year of 190 to 292 points, while the men also continued to improve scoring 284, a vast improvement over their 68-point finish of two year ago.
"We're a young team which is going to improve by leaps and bounds," Belfry said. "This was a tough meet. It was probably the fastest OUA meet in years. There were five Olympians at the meet and it kind of stepped it up for everyone."
"I was really surprised by the strength of a lot of teams, there was a lot more depth this year."
Western did take home some hardware, including two silver medals on the men's side. Matt Wood, who was ranked number one in Ontario in the 50m freestyle, took second place in that event and walked away with five medals.
The women's 4 x 50 medley relay team picked up the only medal lady Mustangs and broke a Western team record in the process.
Carmen Barnett, Jen Manley, Crystal Clark, Natasha Collia and Sarah Teetzel performed well enough to qualify for the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletics Union Championships Feb. 23-25 in Guelph. Wood and Johnny Hewerdine have also qualified, and Belfry said he hopes strong performances at a meet tonight in Guelph will help to send a few more men to the nationals.
WOMEN'S TEAM STANDINGS
1. Toronto 904.50
2. McMaster 640
3. Laurier 378.50
5. Western 292
MEN'S TEAM STANDINGS
1. Toronto 876
2. McMaster 492.50
3. Laurentian 376
7. Western 284.50
Western medal winners
Silver - Matt Wood, 50m freestyle
- 4 x 50 women's medley relay (Carmen Barnett, Crystal Clark, Natasha Collia, Jen Manley)
- 4 x 100 men's freestyle relay (Johnny Hewerdine, Aaron Maszko, Andrew Munro, Matt Wood)
Bronze - Wood, 50m butterfly
- 4 x 200 men's freestyle relay (Hewerdine, Maszko, Munro, Wood)
- 4 x 50 men's medley relay (Nick Macko, Hewerdine, Munro, Wood)
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