ST. CATHARINES, Ont. - The Toronto Varsity Blues and Western Mustangs were dominant once again in the pool after Day 1 at the 2010 Ontario University Athletics (OUA) swimming championships at the Eleanor Misener Aquatic Centre at Brock University.

The defending men’s and women’s champions, respectively, won 14 of a possible 24 medals in eight races on Thursday night, including seven of eight gold medals.

Only Chantique Payne (Brantford, Ont.) of the Guelph Gryphons broke the Toronto-Western stranglehold of the top podium, winning the women’s 50m butterfly for the second straight year in a time of 27.93. In fact, it was the only event the Varsity Blues and Mustangs did not medal in. First-year swimmer Sarah Taylor (Stittsville, Ont.) of the McMaster Marauders and Jennifer Piper (Powassan, Ont.) of the Laurentian Lady Vees took second and third spot, respectively.

Both Toronto and Western fared better in the men’s 50m butterfly, with defending gold medalist Mike Smerek (St. Catharines, Ont.) of the Varsity Blues returning to his hometown to defeat Bryn Jones (Newmarket, Ont.) of the Mustangs by 0.2 seconds. First-year swimmer Wil Wright (Mississauga, Ont.) of the Gryphons placed third.

Western, Toronto and Guelph swimmers were medal winners in both backstroke races. In the closest race on Thursday, Cam Cummings (Oakville, Ont.) of the Varsity Blues defeated first-year Gryphon Benjamin Roberts (Kingston, Ont.) by 6-100ths of a second in the men’s 50m. Brandon Loshusan (Windsor, Ont.) of Western finished third. Loshusan’s teammate, Jennifer Trung (Maple, Ont.), won the women’s 50m by a time of 29.01, ahead of silver medalist Andrea Jurenovskis (Timmins, Ont.) of the Varsity Blues and third-place finisher Bethany Flemington (Puslinch, Ont.) of the Gryphons. Jurenovskis won this event last year.

First-year students swept the podium in the 1,500m freestyle. Western’s Julien Sauvage (Bedarrides, France) won gold in a time of 15:24.96, nearly 35 seconds ahead of second-place challenger Frank Despond (Millgrove, Ont.) of the Marauders. Western’s David Hatch (North York, Ont.) placed third in a time of 16:10.37.

The Varsity Blues and Mustangs combined to sweep the women’s 800m freestyle. Pamela Ruksys (Kingston, Ont.) of the Varsity Blues won gold in a time of 8:49.01, nearly 3 1/2 seconds ahead of Western’s Brittany Cooper (London, Ont.). Melanie Davis (Brantford, Ont.) of the Varsity Blues took bronze in a time of 8:58.63. Cooper won this event in 2009.

There were two relay races on Thursday. Ashleigh Dunnington (Prescott, Ont.), Amber Hutchinson (Brampton, Ont.), Morgan Singleton-Fookes (Calgary) and Alex Cooper (London, Ont.) of Mustangs won the women's 4x50m free relay in 1:45.88, 4-10ths of a second ahead of the Varsity Blues team of Melanie Drozdowsky (Mississauga, Ont.), Sasha Theron (Mississauga, Ont.), Julia Boron (Mississauga, Ont.) and Jurenovskis. The Ottawa Gee-Gees team of Zoe Kamenz (Spencerville, Ont.), Erika Kamenz (Spencerville, Ont.), Kara Demers (Port Colborne, Ont.) and Sarah Boyd won bronze in a time of 1:48.45.

The Varsity Blues team of Luke Hall (Swaziland), Martyn Forde (Barbados), Steven Hibberd (Calgary) and Taylor Bond (Westmount, Que.) won the men's 4x50m freestyle relay in time of 1:33.13. David Landry (Oakville, Ont.), Michael McDonald (Kingston, Ont.), Zach Dewolfe (Windsor, Ont.) and Matthew Vogelzang (Waterford, Ont.) of the Marauders finished in second with a time of 1:34.22, just ahead of the Guelph team of Chad Johnson (Oakville, Ont.), Wright, Chris Miller (Ottawa) and Jordan Duggan (Cambridge, Ont.).

The OUA swimming championships resume on Friday beginning at 10 a.m.



Women’s 4x50m Freestyle Relay

1. Ashleigh Dunnington, Amber Hutchinson, Morgan Singleton-Fookes, Alex Cooper (Western) 1:45.88
2. Melanie Drozdowsky, Sasha Theron, Julia Boron, Andrea Jurenovskis (Toronto) 1:46.29
3. Zoe Kamenz, Erika Kamenz, Kara Demers, Sarah Boyd (Ottawa) 1:48.45

Men’s 4x50m Freestyle Relay

1. Luke Hall, Martyn Forde, Steven Hibberd, Taylor Bond (Toronto) 1:33.13
2. David Landry, Michael McDonald, Zach Dewolfe, Matthew Vogelzang (McMaster) 1:34.22
3. Chad Johnson, Wil Wright, Chris Miller, Jordan Duggan (Guelph) 1:34.76

Women’s 800m Freestyle

1. Pamela Ruksys (Toronto) 8:49.01
2. Brittany Cooper (Western) 8:52.49
3. Melanie Davis (Toronto) 8:58.63

Men’s 1,500m Freestyle
1. Julien Sauvage (Western) 15:24.96
2. Frank Despond (McMaster) 15:59.85
3. David Hatch (Western) 16:10.37

Women’s 50m Backstroke
1. Jennifer Trung (Western) 29.01
2. Andrea Jurenovskis (Toronto) 29.62
3. Bethany Flemington (Guelph) 29.73

Men’s 50m Backstroke
1. Cam Cummings (Toronto) 26.20
2. Benjamin Roberts (Guelph) 26.26
3. Brandon Loshusan (Western) 26.50

Women’s 50m Butterfly
1. Chantique Payne (Guelph) 27.93
2. Sarah Taylor (McMaster) 28.61
3. Jennifer Piper (Laurentian) 28.67

Men’s 50m Butterfly
1. Mike Smerek (Toronto) 25.48
2. Bryn Jones (Western) 25.68
3. Wil Wright (Guelph) 25.79

Eleanor Misener Aquatic Centre, Walker Complex, Brock University

Friday, February 5
Preliminaries: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

W/M - 200m Freestyle
W/M - 100m Breaststroke
W/M - 200m Backstroke
W/M - 100m Butterfly
W/M - 200m Individual Medley
Finals: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
W/M - 200m Freestyle
W/M - 100m Breaststroke
W/M - 100m Butterfly
W/M - 200m Individual Medley
W/M - 4x100m Medley Relay
Saturday, February 6
Preliminaries: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

W/M - 400m Freestyle
W/M - 100m Backstroke
W/M - 100m Freestyle
W/M - 200m Breaststroke
W/M - 200m Butterfly
Finals: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
W/M - 400m Freestyle
W/M - 100m Backstroke
W/M - 100m Freestyle
W/M - 200m Breaststroke
W/M - 4x200m Freestyle Relay

Sunday, February 7
Graduate Parade: 11:45 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Finals: 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

W/M - 4x50m Medley Relay
W/M - 400m Individual Medley
W/M - 50m Freestyle
W/M - 200m Backstroke Final
W/M - 50m Breaststroke
W/M - 200m Butterfly Final
W/M - 4x100m Freestyle Relay

– OUA –


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