Banner Season: Varsity Blues double up on banners to continue strong swimming streak

Photo by Stephen Leithwood
Photo by Stephen Leithwood

St. Catharines, Ont. – The University of Toronto Varsity Blues were crowned champions during the OUA Swimming Championships at Brock University on Saturday.

The Varsity Blues men won their 16th consecutive banner and the women won their sixth consecutive provincial title.

“It’s always fun to win,” said Varsity Blues head coach Byron MacDonald. “But while we have recruited in some very fast talent, they still had to train and prepare properly and perform, which they certainly did. The team is scary good, thus the fairly large margin of victory.”

The Toronto women’s team eclipsed the standings with a total of 1,160 points. The McMaster Marauders (545) and Western Mustangs (536.5) finished second and third, respectively.

Their men’s team finished with 982.5 points ahead of the Waterloo Warriors (575.5) and Western Mustangs (560.5).

Toronto’s senior Olympic swimmer, Kylie Masse, was named the OUA Swimmer of the Year for a fifth consecutive season.

The 2016 Olympic bronze medalist won four individual and two relay gold medals, while breaking four OUA records in the process. Masse won the 50 and 100 backstroke events for the fifth time in her career, earning OUA Major Grand Slam awards for both, while tying her own OUA record in the 50-metre race. After also winning the 50 freestyle for the second straight year on Day 2, the kinesiology major earned a Grand Slam by winning her fourth career 200 backstroke title in OUA record time (2:02.69) on Day 3. To top it all off, Masse helped the Blues to OUA record-breaking performances in the 200 freestyle and 400 medley relays.

She finishes her career undefeated at the OUA championships, having never lost a race.

“She is a once-in-a-generation athlete and it has been a privilege for Linda Kiefer and I to coach her,” said MacDonald. “To swim five years and be so dominant, having never lost a race at the OUA championships, is a remarkable achievement”.

Western Mustangs fourth-year swimmer Matthew Loewen was named the Male Swimmer of the Year. Loewen began the competition with a gold medal in the men’s 100m breaststroke and helped the Mustangs to a silver-medal finish in the men’s 400m medley relay.

He won gold in the men’s 200m breaststroke on the second day of competition.

On the final day, Loewen helped Western win gold in the 200m medley relay and won the 50m breaststroke.



Swimmer of the Year

Female - Kylie Masse (Toronto)

Male - Matthew Loewen (Western)

Rookie of the Year

Female - Rebecca Smith (Toronto)

Male - Lukas Wormald (Waterloo)

Coach of the Year

Female Team - Linda Kiefer and Byron MacDonald (Toronto)

Male Team - Jacqueline Beckford-Henriques (Waterloo)

Dr. Jeno Tihanyi Individual Medley Excellence Award

Female - Georgia Kidd (Toronto)

Male - Lukas Wormald (Waterloo)

Community Service Award

Female - Katherine Ivancic (Waterloo)

Male - Matthew Dans (Toronto)

Awards of Distinction

Riley Konrad (Laurentian)

Matthew Schouten (Laurentian)

Matthew Dans (Toronto)

Mitch Ferraro (Toronto)

Kylie Masse (Toronto)

Victoria Radounski (Toronto)

Courtney Di Carlo (Western)

Charis Huddle (Western)



1. Toronto (1160)

2. McMaster (545)

3. Western (536.5)

4. Waterloo (403.5)

5. Guelph (313)

6. Laurentian (285)

7. Laurier (181)

8. Queens (159)

9. Brock (135)

10. Carleton (77)

11. York (26)



1. Toronto (982.5)

2. Waterloo (575.5)

3. Western (560.5)

4. McMaster (336)

5. Guelph (305)

6. Queens (287)

7. Laurentian (267.5)

8.Brock (172)

10.Laurier (146)

9. Carleton (111)

11. York (21)


Day Three Results: 


Women 200m Medley Relay

Gold:  UofT (1:52.36)

Rachel Rodé, Lea Zila, Kaitlyn Burwell, Rebecca Smith

Silver:  Waterloo (1:54.12)

Eloise Ladyman, Christina Ji, Josie Andres, Jacquelyne Mariano Marino

Bronze: Western Mustangs (1:57.08)

Jessica Allen, Joan-Shiao Chen, Katarina, Kranjc, Jessica Code


Men 200m Medley Relay

Gold: Western (140.62)

Mathew Klahsen, Matthew Loewen, Sebastian Paulins, Brent Waddell

Silver: UofT (140.68)

Chris Ruus, Graeme Aylward, Matt Dans, Mitch Ferraro

Bronze: Waterloo (142.71)

Lukas Wormald, Jake Gu, Alex Lojko, Peter Li


Women 800m Free

Gold: UofT - Sophia Saroukian - (8:53.56)

Silver: UofT - Victoria Radounski - 8:57.60

Bronze: UofT - Kate Rendall - 9:04.80


Women 50m Breast

Gold: Waterloo - Christina Ji - 32:41

Silver: Waterloo - Josie Andres - 32:67

Bronze: UofT- Kelsey Crocker - 32:76


Men 50m Breast

Gold:  Western - Matthew Loewen - 27.84

Silver: Queens - Steven Lee - 28.63

Bronze:  UofT - Graeme Aylward - 29.31


Women 200m Back

Gold: UofT- Kylie Masse - 2:02.69 OUA RECORD

Silver: UofT - Aleksa Gold - 2:10.10

Bronze: UofT - Sarah Polley - 2:12.67


Men 200m Back

Gold: UofT - Matthew Mac - 1:58.69

Silver: Western - Matthew Klahsen - 2:00.37

Bronze: Guelph - Samuel Kuntz - 2:02.69


Women 100m Free 

Gold: UofT- Rebecca Smith - 54:06 OUA RECORD

Silver: Western - Charis Huddle- 54.43

Bronze: UofT - Ainsley McMurray - 55.29


Men 100m Free 

Gold: Laurentian - Matthew Schouten - 50.00

Silver: UofT - Mitch Ferraro - 50.21

Bronze: UofT - Matt Dans - 50.33


Men 1500m Free 

Gold: McMaster - Mitch Muizelaar - 15:34.59

Silver: Brock Badgers - Gokhan Bozyigit - 15:42.32

Bronze: Western - Sebastian Paulins - 15:57.50


Women 200m Individual Medley 

Gold: UofT - Georgia Kidd - 2:12.37

Silver:  McMaster - Isabelle Lei - 2:18.62

Bronze: UofT - Kate Rendall - 2:19.07


Men 200m Individual Medley

Gold: Waterloo - Lukas Wormald - 2:02.62

Silver: UofT - Will Morley - 2:04.55

Bronze: Queens - Victor Uemura - 2:05.43


Women 400m Free Relay 

Gold: UofT - 3:44.05 OUA RECORD

Alexa Gold, Georgia Kidd, Emily Russell, Sarah Polley

Silver: Western - 3:46.68

Rachel Sawchuck, Joan-Shiao Chan, Charis Huddle, Katarina Kranjc

Bronze: McMaster - 3:50.92

Hannah Dvorski, Emma Schlyter, Sarah Little, Veronica Nichol


Men 400m Free Relay

Gold: UofT - 3:21.75

G. Chaubet, Ethan Fazekas, Osvald Nitski, Bjoern-Ole Schrader

Silver: Western- 3:24.17

Elias Chappell, Matthew Loewen, Brent Waddell, Sebastian Paulins

Bronze: Laurentian - 3:26.33

Christopher Eastick, Mitchell Cox, Gabriel Fenn, Matthew Schouten