EDMONTON (U SPORTS) – The defending champion Guelph Gryphons began their respective title defences with strong opening days, as the 2020 U SPORTS Track and Field Championships got underway at the Universiade Pavilion.
The Golden Bears and Pandas qualified two individuals and one relay team for finals on Friday, thanks to strong heat times on Thursday. Canada West Rookie of the Year Olivia Cooper qualified for the women's 600m, as did Brendan Calef in the men's 600m.
The Golden Bears 4x200m relay also qualified for the final.
The Gryphon women finished the first day with a nine-point leader over Laval, thanks to gold and silver medal performances in the women’s 60m dash.
Shyvonne Roxborough placed first with a time of 7.29 seconds, narrowly edging out teammate Jacqueline Madogo (7.33). U SPORTS Rookie of the Year Audrey Leduc earned bronze in the 60m for Laval with a time of 7.44.
“I think I did what I was supposed to do. I tensed up a little bit at the 50-metre mark, but I’m super, super happy with my time,” said Roxborough. “This was something that I was gunning for, going under 7.3, and I did it.”
Emily Fawcett (17.64m) also earned a bronze medal for Guelph in the women’s weight throw, finishing behind U SPORTS Field Athlete of the Year Ariane Dubois from Sherbrooke (18.48), and Laval student-athlete Noémie Jeffrey (18.41).
On the men’s side, Andre Azonwanna placed first in the men’s 60m dash after York Lion Keysean Powell was disqualified for a false start. Powell (6.69) originally beat Azonwanna (6.742), before the officials changed the ruling.
Trinity Western Spartan Praise Olatoke (6.748) finished second, just three one-thousandths of a second behind Azonwanna, with Saskatchewan Huskie Karson Lehner finishing third.
“You would think us entering the championship with high expectations would be tough, but I think we put that pressure on ourselves. And then it just comes to our performances,” said Roxborough. “We all competed well today. I’m so happy Jacqueline placed well, so we can set the tone for the rest of our athletes tomorrow.”
Day 2 of the U SPORTS Championship opens on Friday at 2:30 p.m. ET / 11:30 a.m. PT, with the men’s weight throw.
1. Guelph, 10
2. Trinity Western, 8
3. Manitoba, 7
4. Saskatchewan, 6
5. Dalhousie, 4
6. Lakehead, 3
1. Guelph, 25
2. Laval, 16
3. Sherbrooke, 15
4. Regina, 10
5. Saskatchewan, 9
6. Western, 8
7. Manitoba, 6
8. Toronto, 5
8. Calgary, 5
10. York, 4
10. Waterloo, 4
10, Dalhousie, 4
13. uPEI, 3
13. McGill, 3
Women’s Weight Throw
1. Ariane Dubois, Sherbrooke (18.48m)
2. Noémie Jeffrey, Laval (18.41m)
3. Emily Fawcett, Guelph (17.64m)
Women’s 60 Metre Run
1. Shyvonne Roxborough, Guelph (7.29 sec)
2. Jacqueline Madogo, Guelph (7.33 sec)
3. Audrey Leduc, Laval (7.44 sec)
Men’s 60m Metre Run
1. Andre Azonwanna, Guelph (6.742 sec)
2. Praise Olatoke, Trinity Western (6.748 sec)
3. Karson Lehner, Saskatchewan (6.80)
1. Joely Welburn, Regina (4,055 pts)
2. Nicole Ostertag, Saskatchewan (3,959 pts)
3. Madisson Lawrence, Manitoba (3,933 pts)