Both men and women captured overall gold
For the first time since the 1998-99 season, the familiar navy and blue of the Windsor Lancers was not to be found atop the men’s track and field championship podium. Rather, the red, black, and yellow of the Gryphons stood tallest amongst the OUA.
Led by Gryphon athlete of the week Anthony Romaniw, the Gryphons jumped out to an early overall lead and never let up, beating Windsor by an impressive 57 points in the provincial championships. Romaniw captured four medals on the day, including the three gold medal finishes in the 600 and 1000-metre races, and anchored the 4 x 800 metre relay team. Romaniw added a silver in the 4 x 400 metre. Tim Hendry took gold in the shot put while breaking his own meet record, and grabbed silver in the weight throw event. Yves Sikubwabo earned silver in the 1000 and 1500-metre events, and also pitched in to capture gold in the 4 x 800.
The men’s 1500-metre witnessed the Gryphon 2-3-4-5 finish of Sikubwabo, Steve Holmes, Ross Proudfoot, and Andrew Nixon. All four Gryphons finished within two and a half seconds of each other.
The men scored points in every event they competed in, and of the 28 male competitors sent to represent the Gryphons, all finished in the top eight of at least one event in the championship. It was truly a full-team performance by the men’s side, only to be rivaled by the efforts of the women.
The women’s side also performed exquisitely, grabbing the title from the defending Lancers for the first time since 2008-09. Fellow Gryphon of the week Andrea Seccafien earned gold in the 3000-metre, 4 x 800-metre, and 1500-metre races, effectively spearheading the women’s team to a close victory over the rest of the field.
The women’s team was 12 points off the lead entering the final three events. A 1-2 finish in the 1500-metre by Seccafien and Carise Thompson helped secure victory. However, efforts by Julia Wallace (3 medals), Rachel Aubry (2 medals), Erika Fiedler (1 medal) and Karry-Ann Cornwall (1 medal) contributed to a team effort by the Gryphons that earned points in 16 of 17 events.
In the last ten years of both men and women’s competitions, the OUA champion has won the overall CIS Championship 40 per cent of the time.
The team is making all the last-minute preparations for what should be a very exciting CIS Championship at the University of Calgary on Mar. 7-9.
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