Volume 95, Issue 12

Thursday, September 20, 2001
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Lesser knowns make gains

Wannabe football players rejoice

The sports bitch list

Lesser knowns make gains

By Ryan Dixon
Gazette Staff

As the leaves continue to turn, more and more Western varsity teams are springing into action. Although some of these teams' exploits are carefully chronicled and talked about on campus, other squads have the tendency to fade to the back despite great achievements.

The Gazette has decided to try and put an end to this.

Here is part one of a preview of some sports you may not hear discussed during the five minutes before class.

Men's Squash

The Year that Was: Ontario University Athletic Champions for the 18th year in a row (that's right kids).

Key Departures: Jonathan Dale, Ryan Haider and Ian Robertson.

Now Arriving: Canadian National Team members Rob Nigro and Andrew Jones are ready to be big contributors. Last years' captain Jamie Nichols is still swatting away for the Mustangs.

The Coach's Comment: Jack Fairs obviously crafted a fine formula for success, but he said this year will be another challenge and nothing will be taken for granted. "It's never easy. We've been very fortunate and had a bit of luck. I'm sure these teams are sick of seeing us win. There are some solid teams in the OUA, so we never assume anything. It's always stressful and we've got to earn it."

Women's Squash

The Year that Was: OUA gold.

Key Departures: Leanne Devos, Wendy Oliver and Ainsley Rice

Now Arriving: Fresh faces include Kimberly Farah all the way from Trinidad, Naomi Brown and Amanda Mikalachki. Tara Turner, Vanessa Steinwall and Kristina Matson will be looked upon to step up and fill big roles.

The Coach's Comment: Leah Bishop heads up this squad and said things look good. "We've had our first practice and things look very encouraging. We'll have to see what other schools have done, but if things haven't changed, I think we have a really good shot. Our team is as strong or stronger than last year."

Women's Swimming

The Year that Was: a disappointing sixth at OUA's after a very strong season.

Key Departures: Crystal Clark.

Now Arriving: Sarah Teetzel, Carmen Barnett and co-captains Julie Woodroffe and Jen Sinclair.

The Coach's Comment: Western's head coach Glen Belfry left no doubt how he feels about the upcoming season. "I'm more excited than I've ever been. Everybody has come back so fit – I'm very positive about the year. On the three or four recruiting trips I took this summer I didn't see any other university swimmers. It really was a huge summer for us in terms of the training."

Men's Swimming

The Year that Was: fifth at OUA's.

Key Departures: John Hewerdine.

Now Arriving: Aaron Maszko, Jordan Tovell and co-captains Matt Wood and Jamie McConnel.

The Coach's Comment: Glen Belfry, also head coach of the men's swimming team said, "we've picked up some new recruits and we've got a lot of veterans back. I think it's realistic [to expect to finish] in the top three at the OUAs. If we stay on top of things and keep momentum, it's very realistic."

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Copyright The Gazette 2001