By JAKE ROBINSON
It’s coming down to the fourth quarter for the Condors.
As the first half of the fall varsity season comes to an end, Conestoga is in the mix of things and fighting for a playoff spot in each sport.
Conestoga initially made noise during the first week of the season when two Condors were named Player of the Week. Flanker Danielle Pauze won the award for women’s rugby after she scored the game winning try in Conestoga’s first-ever game. Forward Samantha Fowles won the award for women’s soccer after she scored a hat trick in the opening game of the season which gave Conestoga a 3-0 victory over Mohawk.
“There’s great players on each team,” said Conestoga’s athletic director Marlene Ford. “What I really like about all of our teams is that none of the teams focus on one player. It’s not one player that’s winning or losing these games; all our coaches have really instilled that it’s a team sport.”
The opening week of the season also saw some great performances during the first cross-country meet at Fanshawe. The women’s team had two top 20 finishers; Stephanie Mason finished 7th with a time of 21:33 while Heidi Bechtold placed 12th with a time of 22:26. The men’s team had one runner finish in the top 20; Brendan Hancock finished 18th with a time of 30:16.
With a few more cross-country meets remaining, Ford is hopeful that some of Conestoga’s runners will qualify for nationals.
“As usual our cross-country running team is quite strong,” she said. “We’re sending 10 runners to the provincial championships and we’re hoping from there we’ll be able to send some of them to nationals.”
The men’s soccer team got off to a tough start as they faced the top two teams in the province. However, Conestoga redeemed themselves as they won their next three games putting the team in the playoff race.
The women’s soccer team is also fighting for a playoff spot. The team has boasted a winning record of 4-3 which has put them one win away from making the playoffs. They are currently tied for fourth with Mohawk; however, a win against Lambton in their next game would clinch a playoff spot for the Condors.
Ford said it’s been a long time since the soccer teams made the provincials and she would like to see them make it this year.
“We’ve always got to those playoff games and just lost out, so it would be nice if they could get through,” she said.
The women’s rugby team is in good shape to make the playoffs as well.
They have put up an impressive record to begin the season and are currently in second place in their division. The division consists of the only three returning teams from last season.
“If they keep it up I won’t be surprised if we’re playing for a gold medal,” said Ford. “They’ve been definitely a pleasant surprise – with a brand new coach, brand new team, they have a great work ethic.”
With the season coming to an end, every team is working hard to represent Conestoga and be among the best in the Ontario College Athletic Association.