Banner Season: Western claims double gold on the courts to kick off championship schedule in style

Photo by Martin Bazyl
Photo by Martin Bazyl

Markham, Ont. – The Western Mustangs brought home gold in both the men’s and women’s events with both sides defeating the tough Toronto Varsity Blues in the final round.

Gold Medal Matches

Western (5) def. Toronto (2) - Men

Western (5) def. Toronto (2) – Women

The Western men delivered gritty performances all the way down the line-up to improve on their third place finish from the year prior. Toronto struck first and claimed the doubles point with wins at #2 and # 3, leaving the top-seeded Mustangs with an uphill battle ahead. 

Western managed to come from behind to win five out of the six singles matches and closed out a 5-2 team victory and the OUA Championship title.  Andrew Bourne-Kaponeridis won the sole singles match for Toronto at the #3 position, defeating Mark Jensen 6-2, 6-1. At #2 singles, freshman Matthew Oliver (Western) came from a set down to beat Nathan Wong (Toronto) 2-6, 7-5, 6-2. 

The Mustangs’ women, meanwhile, successfully defended their title to give them their third consecutive OUA Championship.  It is the first time in their program's history that the Mustangs have won three straight provincial gold medals, with the latest closing out a double gold performance for the purple ponies.

Western secured the doubles point with straight-forward wins on all three courts.  The singles, however, provided some addition intrigue, as the Varsity Blues brought their best tennis to force a tight match.

Western posted straight set wins at #3 and 4 singles, courtesy of Angela Chen and Sophie Biu to take a 3-0 lead in the team fixture. With lots of tennis to be played though, courts #5 and #6 headed into third sets. Western’s Helen He finally defeated Toronto’s Mara Stroe 6-2, 6-3 at #1 singles to clinch the win for the Mustangs. The win also gave Helen He her third consecutive undefeated season in the OUA and helped her captured her third Player of the Year award. 

Toronto’s Salma Dessouki and Milena Music gave Toronto their two points.  Dessouki defeated Mady Benn (Western) 3-6, 7-6, 10-4, while Music (Toronto) defeated Leanna Carpina (Western) 6-3, 1-6, 6-4.   

Bronze Medal Action

York (7) def. McMaster (0) – Men

York (6) def. McMaster (1) – Women

The York Lions men’s team earned the bronze medal on Sunday, handing McMaster a 7-0 loss.

Despite the score line, the individual matches were extremely close, with many of the matches going the distance. Courts 3, 5 and 6 were all three-set affairs, with York coming out on top in each. Tegbir Hara, Pierre Spencer, and Sahil Sareen all won straight set matches at #1, #3 and #4 singles, respectively, to close out the victory for the Lions.

York’s women’s team, meanwhile, followed suit to secure a bronze medal finish of their own. They defeated McMaster by a score of 6-1 in yet another match that was far closer than the final score line suggests.  

The doubles point came down to a tie-breaker at #2 doubles. Heather Hills and Randa Hassan won a nail-biter, 8-7, against McMaster’s Adele Lee and Maya Emerson. 

York went on to win at #2, 3, 5, and 6 singles to secure the victory. Lee posted the sole point for McMaster with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Hassan at #4 singles.  At #1 singles, there was some spectacular tennis as Sara Krupica (York) held on to defeat Emerson (McMaster) in two close tie-break sets, 7-6, 7-6.  McMaster posted their best finish in over a decade and looks to be a team to keep an eye on moving forward.      

Congratulations to all participating teams and thank you to the coaches and student-athletes for a spectacular weekend of tennis.  

OUA All Stars - Men

1.    Andre Szilvassy, Western

2.    Matthew Oliver, Western

3.    Brett Stinson, Toronto

4.    Andre Bourne-Kaponeridis, Toronto

5.    Tegbir Hara, York

6.    Jeremy Guttman, York

OUA All Stars - Women

1.    Helen He, Western

2.    Angela Chen, Western

3.    Salma Dessouki, Toronto

4.    Milena Music, Toronto

5.    Sara Krupica, York

6.    Heather Hills, York

Player of the Year- Men

Andre Szilvassy- Western

Rookie of the Year- Men

Matthew Oliver- Western

Player of the Year- Women

Helen He- Western

Rookie of the Year- Women

Cammille Duggal- Western

Coach of the Year- Men

Cameron Cross- Western

Coach of the Year- Women

Mike Richards- Western