There must be something in the water right now. For the first in Canadian history, both men’s champions are from the east. Nipissing University defeated Red Deer College 3-0 (25-18, 25-21, 25-22) on Saturday night at Niagara College, for their first CCAA Championship.
It was a tournament of firsts.
The Lakers managed to do what Mount Royal and UBCO failed to do in the past two years, which is win the CCAA title in their last year before making the jump to the CIS. In 2011, we saw UBCO fall just short finishing second, while Mount Royal grabbed the bronze last year.
Then, for the first time in CCAA history, the representative from the OCAA has won for a second year in a row. To add to that, it was also the first time we saw an all-Ontario semi-final, with the Champion Lakers taking on the host Niagara Knights.
The SAIT Trojans took home the Bronze, after losing to their conference rival Red Deer in the semis, taking down a surprisingly mediocre team from Capilano University in the Bronze semi, then defeated the Blues Pac West brother, the VIU Mariners in the second-last match of the tournament.
Capilano came into the tournament ranked second after upsetting last year’s Silver medalist, Douglas College, on route to winning the Pac West conference. The Blues fell to host Niagara in a five-set thriller, then found their only win of the tournament against the RSEQ representative, the Griffons de l’Outaouais in another five-setter. For the first time since 2006, the podium lacks a team from BC.
Frankie Edgecomb added to his All-Canadian award as he was named the Tournament MVP. First team All-Stars went to Tyler Philipson and Adam Leblanc of the Gold medal Lakers, the Silver medalist are represented by first-year setter Same Brisbane. Darcee Froese from SAIT, Dan Caverly from Capilano, and Shayne Petrusma from Niagara rounded out the squad.
Second Team All-Star honours went to L’Outaouais Griffon Hugo Lachance Berthel, Victoria Island University Mariner Lee Hamilton, SAIT’s Scott Lesher, RDC Kings Tim Finnigan and Braden O’Toole, and finally Nipissing’s Andre Leblanc. The National Championship’s Fair Play award was rewarded to CÉGEP de l’Outaouais.
GOLD- Nipissing University Lakers (OCAA)
SILVER- Red Deer College Kings (ACAC)
BRONZE- Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Trojans (ACAC)
Fourth- Vancouver Island University Mariners (Pac West)
Fifth/Sixth- Capilano University Blues (Pac West)
Fifth/Sixth- Niagara College Knights (OCAA)
Seventh- CÉGEP de l’Outaouais Griffons (ACAA)
Eighth- University of Kings College Blue Devils (RSEQ)