What an exciting weekend of tennis at the Canadian University Tennis Championships! With Université de Montréal aiming to defend their titles on both the men’s and women’s side, it wasn’t going to be easy. University of Alberta, Memorial University, and Western University were ready to leave it all on the court and vie for the title as well. After watching live Rogers Cup quarterfinal action on Friday evening at the Aviva Centre in Toronto and Stade IGA in Montréal, the players were inspired to play their best and give it everything they had.
There was no shortage of great matches in both Toronto and Montreal on semi-final Saturday! Memorial University gave a valiant effort in their first appearance at the nationals but came up short in the semi-final against Western University in both the men’s and women’s event. In the other semi-final, University of Alberta defeated Université de Montréal in a highly competitive matchup to advance to the women’s final, while the result between the two teams was reversed for the men.
Sunday’s women’s final featured University of Alberta against Western University. Alberta quickly claimed the doubles point and followed up with the first two single wins to jump to a 3-0 lead. The #1 singles match went down to the wire, with Western’s Helen He and Alberta’s Tereza Simonova putting on a great show. Simonova edged out He with a 6-2 win in the deciding third set, bringing the Pandas their second national title back to Edmonton!
In the men’s final, the Université de Montréal Carabins started off strong to take the doubles point. The Western Mustangs battled hard in the singles but ultimately came up short. The Carabins took it 4-1 to take the gold and defend their national title!
In the third-place playoffs, the women from Memorial continued their strong effort but Université de Montréal dominated the matches to take home the bronze medal. Even so, it was a great experience for the young team from St. John’s, and the players can hold their heads high as they aim to build on this year’s success. On the men’s side, the University of Alberta Golden Bears swept the doubles matches against Memorial, but Seahawks captain Josh Lehr put Memorial on the board with his straight sets singles win, no doubt just one of many notable accomplishments for the Memorial tennis program. However, the Golden Bears forged ahead to win the remaining matches and take home the bronze medal.
In addition to the trophy and medals, several other awards were also handed out:
- Player of the Year (male): Solal Dia (Université de Montréal)
- Player of the Year (female): Tereza Simonova (University of Alberta)
- Coach of the Year (men’s team): Andrzej Zaleski (Université de Montréal)
- Coach of the Year (women’s team): Ivan Quintero (University of Alberta)
The quality of play was extremely high in both the men’s and women’s events, and all players and coaches are to be congratulated for their effort, fair play, and team spirit!