Gryphons men and women repear as OUA cross country champions
Source: OUA Communications
OTTAWA, Ont. – Once again it was the Guelph Gryphon men and women's teams who dominated at the 2011 OUA Championships, presented by Suunto. The Gryphons swept the team titles for the seventh consecutive year on Saturday afternoon in Ottawa.
Guelph head coach Dave Scott Thomas was very pleased with the result after a hard fought race by both his men's and women's teams. "We knew we were coming in with strong teams, and we wanted to use this step for the national championships in two weeks. We know the competition there will be deeper and tougher. So today we went in with strategies to try and set up that competition and go for some national titles," said Thomas.
"But credit to the other schools that came out hard today. I mean the Lancers (men's team) came at us very hard and forced us to be at our best, they ran a fantastic race," he added.
On the men's side, Guelph claimed four of the top six spots with Andrew Nixon (Thunder Bay, Ont.) of Guelph winning the gold medal and the OUA MVP title with a time of 30:51.8. "I was hungry for it and I'm happy that I was able to win today," said Nixon.
When asked about leading his team to a seventh consecutive title, the third-year runner was all smiles and said: "It's indescribable, and continuing this tradition is what we came here to do and we're still making a name for ourselves."
Finishing just two seconds behind Nixon, was Guelph teammate and 2010 OUA Rookie of the Year Ross Proudfoot (Sudbury, Ont.) who bettered last year's fourth place finish with a time of 30:53.9. In third place was Windsor's Matt Walters (North Bay, Ont.) with a time of 30:57.1. Finishing fourth was last year's champion from Guelph Alex Genest (Lac Aux Sables, Que.), and rounding out the top six were Windsor's Anthony Berkis (Oshawa, Ont.) in fifth, and Guelph's Aaron Hendrikx (Parkhill, Ont.) in sixth.
Hendrikx's performance was enough to earn him OUA Rookie of the Year honours in being the first rookie, under 21 years of age and in his first year of eligibility, to cross the finish line with a time of 31:15.0.
The Gryphons earned 20 points for the OUA team title, their eleventh since 1999, while Windsor finished in second with 40 points, and Queen's in third with 103 points.
On the women's side, the Gryphon's may have claimed the overall team championship banner but it was Toronto's Tamara Jewett (Toronto) who captured the women's individual OUA title and MVP with a time of 17:33.5. "It feels wonderful, I'm very happy!" said Jewett following the race. "The course was good, I really liked it, and it was such a beautiful day," she added.
Jewett was followed by Guelph's Genevieve Lalonde (Moncton, N.B.) in second with a time of 17:46.1, and in third was Andrea Secaffian (Guelph, Ont.), also from Guelph, at a time of 17:49.7. Rounding out the top six were McMaster's Victoria Coates (Newmarket, Ont.) who came fourth, while Carise Thompson (Lynden, Ont.) of Guelph and Jen Bays (Whitby, Ont.) of Western finished fifth and sixth respectively.
Guelph earned 25 points for the OUA team title, one more than last year's championship team. This marks Guelph's eighth consecutive women's title. Coming closest to the Gryphons was McMaster who claimed silver for the second straight year with 57 points, while Western was third with 88 points.
The top seven runners in the men and women's race earn OUA first team all-star recognition. Second team all-stars are finishers eight through 14. Joanna Brown (Carp, Ont.) of Guelph was named Rookie of the Year after being the first rookie (21 years and under) to cross the finish line in 15th place with a time of 18:32.9.
Runners will now shift their focus and get ready for CIS Championships, which are being hosted at Laval University in Quebec City on November 12, 2011.
OUA WOMEN'S CROSS COUNTRY MAJOR AWARD WINNERS
MVP: Tamara Jewett (Toronto)
Rookie of the Year: Joanna Brown (Guelph)
FIRST TEAM ALL-STARS
1- Tamara Jewett (Toronto)
2- Genevieve Lalonde (Guelph)
3- Andrea Secaffien (Guelph)
4- Victoria Coates (McMaster)
5- Carise Thompson (Guelph)
6- Jen Bays (Western)
7- Lydia Frost (Guelph)
Second Team All-Stars
8- Nadine Frost (Guelph)
9- Jillian Wyman (McMaster)
10- Lindsay Furtado (Guelph)
11- Sarah Haliburton (McMaster)
12- Jen Corrick (Windsor)
13- Steph Macneill (McMaster)
14- Pieterson Becky (Western)
OUA MEN'S CROSS COUNTRY MAJOR AWARD WINNERS
MVP: Andrew Nixon (Guelph)
Rookie of the Year: Aaron Hendrikx (Guelph)
FIRST TEAM ALL-STARS
1- Andrew Nixon (Guelph)
2- Ross Proudfoot (Guelph)
3- Matt Walters (Windsor)
4- Alex Genest (Guelph)
5- Anthony Berkis (Windsor)
6- Aaron Hendrikx (Guelph)
7-Allan Brett (Guelph)
SECOND TEAM ALL-STARS
8- Andrew Aguano (Windsor)
9- Kyle O'Neill (Western)
10- Paul Janikowski (Windsor)
11- Maxime Leboeuf (Queen's)
12- Tommy Lecours (Guelph)
13- Zain Ahmed (Toronto)
14- Nick Falk (Windsor)
FULL RACE RESULTS