Athletics Week in Review: October 29

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It was another busy and successful sporting week, starting with SMUS’ performance in the Vancouver Island Cross Country Meet at Beaver Lake.

Indeed, 36 runners took part in the four races, which all featured highly competitive fields of more than 120 competitors and served as provincial qualifiers.

At the Junior boys level, the Blue Jags, led by Lucas Simpson (13th) and Aubry Williams (16th), finished 4th overall to claim a BC berth. The Senior boys did, too, thanks to good balance and strong individual performances from Michael Wong-Harrison (18th) and Santiago Mazoy (24th).

The girls, unfortunately missing a number of key performers due to other school commitments, looked just to have missed out on the BCs, despite Acacia Welsford’s fine 21st-place finish. But in a late turn of events, the provincial association awarded an extra berth to the Island zone, allowing SMUS to gain entry to the season finale!

Pride of place and special congratulations go to Maia Watson, who, after a simply wonderful run, captured the gold medal in the Junior race.

Best of luck to all the SMUS athletes who will take part in the BC Championships November 1 at West Shore Parks and Recreation in Colwood.

It was another successful week for Senior girls field hockey. Fresh off winning the SMUS Invitational tournament, it was back to business in local play with games against Lambrick Park (5-0) and Mount Douglas (2-0). These wins secured first place in the league, and a chance to defend the May Tully Shield against Oak Bay on October 29 at UVic.

The team also took part in the AA Island Championships in Duncan. An Abby Fraser hat trick paved the way to a comfortable semi-final victory over Mark R. Isfeld Secondary of Courtenay, setting the stage for another showdown against Brentwood. As was the case the previous week, SMUS dominated the first half, but had only an Anna Mollenhauer goal to show for its efforts. Once again, Brentwood fought back, equalizing shortly after intermission to set the stage for a pressure-packed final 20 minutes. Finally, after waves of SMUS pressure, Olivia Donald cashed in after some great work by Rylee and Kasey Boyle. The 2-1 victory was fair reward for territorial pressure and multiple scoring chances, and secured for SMUS its third-consecutive Island AA title.

While the May Tully Shield game is immediately on the horizon, the team is also focusing on the upcoming BC AA Provincial Championships, to be held November 6-8 in Oliver.

You can browse and download photos of the Senior girls field hockey team’s victory at the AA Island Championship at the SMUS Photo Gallery.

Meanwhile, the Development team continued to battle hard, despite being matched against the other schools’ first teams. In narrow losses to Reynolds, Lambrick Park and GNS, the players did extremely well. The juniors in the group look forward to the Island finals on November 13 at Shawnigan.

After a comfortable win over Lambrick Park, with Mike Edwards and Manolo Carzo earning their first goals of the season, and Hari Ikonomou and Alec Keech in fine form, the Senior boys soccer team, with first place at stake, took on Oak Bay in its final league game.

On a wet and wind-swept Carnarvon Park, the Blue Jags didn’t manage the best start, conceding two early goals. Undeterred, the team battled back impressively, with Callum Montgomery completing a fine buildup to cut the deficit in half by the break. The next 25 minutes featured some of the best soccer played by SMUS so far this season, as the team, with Montgomery, Brian Im, Ryan Cui and Matty McColl controlling play, scored three more superb goals to lead 4-2. However, a loss of concentration then proved fatal, as fouls led to a number of free kicks. Oak Bay converted on two of these chances, with a highly entertaining game finishing level at 4-4.

Nonetheless, SMUS, by virtue of the draw, finished the league in first place with a 6-0-1 record. Next up is a Colonist Cup semi-final match against Reynolds, set to be played October 29 on the UVic turf. Next week, the team will contest the Island AA tournament at Kwalikum.

The Juniors, having scrambled back to draw Reynolds 1-1, then edged Claremont 2-1 to both remain top of the City table and qualify for Islands. Jim Newman provided the decisive goal, with Jasper Bosley securing the points with a superb diving save at the final whistle.

Next up for the team is the Island Championships in Comox from November 3-4.

In Squash, fourteen SMUS athletes participated in the Evergreen Junior Open. At Boys U15B, Lucas Galloway won all three of his matches to claim the title and serve notice he is ready to move to the main division. Matthew Wong lost by a very narrow margin in the semifinals, while Mark Felea-Motet won the consolation side of the draw.

In the boys U17, Jason Yoo and Nathan Von Hagen both finished in the top five.

On the Girls’ side, Rachel Yuen captured a silver medal at 15 level. En route, she had a fine comeback win against teammate Alex Brown (who eventually finished 5th), coming back from two games down and fighting off a number of match points. In the U17 draw, Madison Liew also claimed second place, a top performance which included a win over the tournament No. 1 seed. Playing up a level at U19, Grace Thomas faced a strong and diverse field, including opponents from Holland and Egypt. Two victories from four matches resulted in a bronze-medal finish.

Also of note were the efforts of Christian Yuen, only in Grade 5, winning at U13 level.​

The SMUS team will be collecting a lot of air miles over the next six weeks as Liew, Euan Hannigan, Robert Fisher and Hedvika Suchankova travel to Yale to watch the College Squash Ivy League scrimmages in New Haven, Conn. SMUS grads Janel Gaube ’14 (Dartmouth), Nicole Bunyan ’11 (Princeton) and Tyler Olson ’11 (Harvard) will all be on display for their respective school.

Immediately afterwards, SMUS will journey to Calgary for the Alberta Jesters Junior Open. Live updates will be available on Twitter @SMUSsquash.

In Volleyball, ​the Senior girls struggled somewhat in the Tier 1 ISA event, despite fine play from Robyn Noel, Silke Kuhn and Sasha Boehm. Nonetheless, the six hard matches against strong and skillful teams were of great value, with lessons learned hopefully transmitting to league encounters this week versus Reynolds and Claremont.

These games precede the November 1 Lower Island AA playoffs at Parkland, in which a top-four finish is required to move on to the Island Tournament, to be held November 14-15 at SMUS.

You can browse and download photos of the Senior girls volleyball team at the ISA Tournament at the SMUS Photo Gallery.

(photos by Brady Doland)

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