The 2017-18 athletics season got underway this past week with the Senior boys soccer and girls field hockey teams in action.
In the ISA soccer event, played at SMUS, the Senior boys A team opened with a frustrating 0-0 draw versus Aberdeen Hall. Despite dominating possession, territory and scoring chances, the Blue Jags failed to register a goal, which was to prove very costly as the tournament unfolded.
The second pool game, against Shawnigan Lake School, looked set to add to the frustration before two second-half goals by Peter Koltronis and a laser-like strike from Adrian Hof confirmed a 3-0 victory.
The draw versus Aberdeen Hall meant that SMUS needed to defeat St. George’s in its final pool match to top the group and reach the tournament final. To their credit, the visitors controlled play for long periods in the first half and some fine home-side defending, led by Luke Rainier-Pope, kept the game scoreless at intermission.
SMUS pressed well after the break, but was unable to claim the crucial goal in what finished as another scoreless draw.
In the bronze-medal game, goals by Ewan Halliday, Jom Umpujh and Finn Goodyear proved enough in a 3-1 win over West Point Grey Academy. Credit goes to the back four of Rainier-Pope, Matt Hagkull, Matthias Hoenisch and Sean Finamore, which, aided by netminder Franklin Lu, conceded only one goal in the four matches.
The Senior boys development team was also in action in the Tier 2 ISA event, scrambling back in its first game to draw 2-2 against Southridge. Logan Wang then made two fine saves in the penalty shootout to see SMUS emerge victorious.
The Day 2 highlight was an improbable goal by Elvis Duru, who launched a clearing kick from deep in his own half which bounced over the head of the opposing goalie and into the net. However, St. John’s then replied with four goals for a 4-1 victory.
SMUS’s final game versus St. George’s featured some bright moments and clever play, but, in the end, the opposition proved too strong.
Check out more photos of the Senior boys soccer game versus Aberdeen Hall at the SMUS Photo Gallery.
Both the SMUS 1st XI and development teams participated in the Friendship Cup in Duncan. The event proved an excellent opportunity for players to gain experience and for coaches to try out various combinations.
The girls 1st XI won all of its matches, defeating M.M. Robinson, an Ontario team on tour, Glenlyon Norfolk School and Brentwood College. Catharina Commichau, Cordel Tromp and Suzie Stone all performed particularly well, while forwards Elle Nelson and Nadine Reis, in addition to goalkeeper Jessie Cheng, were also impressive.
Overall, this gold medal win was a most encouraging start given that so many established senior players graduated last year.
The development team found the going somewhat harder but learned a great deal in the process. A record number of players have opted for field hockey this term, which augurs well for the rest of the season and the future.
There was also plenty of news to report from the summer, with many SMUS alumni playing at the representative level in several sports.
As has been reported on many other fronts, Quinn Ngawati ’17 began his professional rugby league career with the Toronto Wolfpack franchise and just signed a two-year contract extension.
Also from the class of 2017, Sam Kahn and Chrissa Tromp toured Ireland with BC U18 rugby union side, while Max Freund represented the province at the interprovincials.
Likewise, Jonas Robinson, Aidan Cole and Lucas de Vries (all 2016 grads) were part of BC’s championship rugby team at U19 Nationals.
In softball, current students Kaia Gyorfi and Gabby Freer played for U17 Team Canada in major tournaments in Delaware and then Prague.
Finally, Reis, Stone and Tromp played field hockey for Team BC. They were joined by Anna Mollenhauer ’17, a member also of the national Junior team and who has started her career with the UVic Vikes.