The York University Lions won a tough fixture 4-3 over the Montreal Carabins on Saturday to be crowned the 2016 Canadian university tennis women’s champions for the second year in a row on a hot, humid day in Montreal at STADE IGA.
In the consolation final, the Alberta Pandas came through 5-2, defeating the McGill Marletts to finish the tournament in third place.
York vs. Montreal
The final fixture was full of great moments and intense action, and the York Lions dug deep to pull out the win against a tough, talented Montreal team. Montreal, still dealing with a rash of injuries, fought hard but came up just short in their chance to take the title from York.
Montreal had some bad news at the beginning of doubles play, as Anais Boa was unable to compete after injuring herself on Thursday during the semifinals. With nobody to take her place, Montreal had to forfeit their third team doubles match, meaning York had to win just one of the two remaining matches for the important doubles point. Not phased, the Montreal girls came out hard and won both matches, earning them the doubles point, which has helped so many teams already in this tournament.
In singles play, due to the injury of Boa, Montreal had to give up a single point in the sixth seeded matchup, which meant there were five points up for grabs with the teams tied 1-1 heading into singles play. Montreal top players Marianne Jodoin and Clémentine Michallon played outstanding tennis, winning both of their matches. Unfortunately the injuries caught up to the Carabins, as York was able to win the other three singles matches, securing the national title.
With all of the matches complete, except for the fifth-seeded match, Isabella Baston was able to pull out the win for the Lions in front of the largest crowd of the tournament. Her teammates flooded the court once the final point was scored, cheering loudly and bringing the title back to York for the second year in a row.
Alberta vs. McGill
In the consolation final, Alberta was able to take control of the fixture, winning by a final of 5-2. The Pandas and Martletts put on an impressive display for the fans in attendance. Alberta proved too deep for the McGill winning the doubles and four singles matches to take the fixture.
University of Alberta’s top player, Kristina Sanjevic, continued her outstanding display of tennis, winning her third and fourth matches of the tournament on Saturday, leading her to be named the tournament MVP for the women. With two years of eligibility remaining for the Alberta Panda standout, Sanjevic is proving to be a major force on the Canadian university women’s circuit.
Chris Field, head coach of the York Lions was awarded the coaching excellence award after helping to lead the team to victory. When asked what winning that award meant to him, Field said he only did it for the love of the game and to ensure the girls had a chance to play once their junior careers had completed. Humble as always, he wanted to take no credit for the team’s win, saying that his players were the ones that allowed him to win the award.
Be sure to follow the University Championships on Facebook for updates throughout the tournament and pictures from the event.