Toronto - The University of Toronto Varsity Blues men's and women's swimming teams both placed first as they hosted the 2018 OUA Fairweather division championships, November 24-25, at Varsity Pool.
TEAM STANDINGS: Toronto's women won all 19 races and finished with 1,214 points, ahead of the Western Mustangs (657.5), McMaster Marauders (619.5) and Waterloo Warriors (616). The Blues men won 11-of-19 races and combined for 1179 points. Waterloo placed second with 863.5 points, while Western (574.5) and McMaster (497) were third and fourth, respectively.
"It's always nice to win banners so winning the divisional championships is great," said Varsity Blues head coach Byron MacDonald. "We had some top swims so we will take that into our next phase of training as we begin to prep for the OUA and national championships in February. The team will not get the holiday period off as they will be off to Florida for a week-long intensive training camp prior to school beginning in January."
WOMEN'S RESULTS: Leading the Blues women was rookie standout Ainsley McMurray. The Montreal native won the 50 butterfly (27.14), 100 freestyle (54.52) and 200 freestyle (1:59.90) over the two-day meet.
"Ainsley was a key recruit and all of the top schools were after her and she showed today that the attention was merited," said MacDonald. "That was a world-class time she posted to win the 100 freestyle."
Four other Blues won two races over the two-day meet. On Day 1, fifth-year veteran and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Kylie Masse placed first in both the 50 backstroke (26.81) and 50 freestyle (25.11), while third-year sensation Hannah Genich won her signature 200 butterfly (2:10.71), while also touching the wall first in the 200 backstroke (2:11.16).
Third-year distance specialist Sophia Saroukian finished first in the 400 (4:19.36) and 800 freestyle (8:58.05) events, with Lea Zila winning both the 50 (32.94) and 100 breaststroke (1:11.89) races.
Single victories were recorded by Rebecca Smith in the 100 butterfly (58.44), Kate Rendall in the 400 IM (4:52.07), Georgia Kidd in the 200 IM (2:17.83), Kelsey Crocker in the 200 breaststroke (2:35.76) and Aleksa Gold in the 100 backstroke (1:01.65).
The Blues also won all three relays over the division championships.
MEN'S RESULTS: Toronto's men saw four double winners over the course of the weekend. Matt Dans won the 50 (24.76) and 100 butterfly (54.01), while fellow veteran Mitch Ferraro placed first in the 50 (23.16) and 100 freestyle (50.54) events.
Third-year swimmer Matthew Mac finished first in the 100 (56.38) and 200 backstroke (2:01.25) races, while rookie Everett Smith touched the wall first in both the 200 IM (2:05.04) and 400 IM (4:30.55).
Single wins were registered three Blues. Chris Ruus won the 50 backstroke in 25.76 seconds to quality for his first U SPORTS championships next winter.
"Chris has stepped up his training this year and he agrees that it has made the significant difference to get him to the national level," said MacDonald.
Rounding out the gold-medal victories were Gael Chaubet in the 200 freestyle (1:51.37) and Osvald Nitski in the 200 butterfly (2:00.87).
Source: Toronto Varsity Blues