Jam-packed sporting weekend on tap for York

One of the busiest weekends for sports at York this season will feature the Ontario University Athletics tennis championship, home openers for both the Lions men’s and women’s hockey teams, a volleyball tournament and two of the top soccer teams in the country.

Mikhail LewThe feature attraction will be the provincial tennis finals, Friday and Saturday, at 3pm, at the Rexall Centre on York’s Keele campus. The Lions, led by nationally ranked player Mikhail Lew, enter the men’s tournament as the top-ranked team, while the women are second and will face the University of Toronto Varsity Blues in a semi-final on Friday, Oct. 12, at 1pm.

Right: Mikhail Lew                 

On the ice, the Lions men’s hockey team will drop the puck for their second season under coach Bill Maguire, Friday at 7pm when the Royal Military College Paladins visit Canlan Courtney UnruhIce Sports. The next day, the Lions men’s team plays host to the Queen’s Golden Gaels at 2pm. The women’s hockey team, meanwhile, plays its home opener Saturday, at 6pm, against the Guelph Gryphons and then plays host to the Brock Badgers Sunday, at 2pm. The Lions women’s team are off to a 2-1 start. Courtney Unruh had four assists in a 4-3 win over the Western Mustangs Saturday in London, Ont.

Left: Courtney Unruh

The news also is good for the Lions soccer teams. For the first time in school history, the Lions men’s soccer team earned the No. 1 ranking in the country last week and York lived up to that billing this past weekend, winning games against Laurier and Windsor. Still, the Lions might need to win their final two games this weekend to secure top spot in the Ontario University Athletics West division. The Lions play host to the Guelph Gryphons Saturday, at 3:15pm, and the second-place Western Mustangs Sunday, at 3:15pm, both games at York Stadium. The Lions women’s soccer team plays the same two teams this weekend at 1pm both days. The women secured the west division regular season title this past weekend.

Inside the Tait McKenzie Centre, women’s volleyball will take centre stage. The Lions will compete against Queen’s, Waterloo, Laurier and Windsor in their annual pre-season tournament. It will mark new coach Arif Nathoo’s debut at York.