It was an exciting Saturday morning atop the hills of Fort Henry in Kingston as the University of Ottawa Gee Gee women’s cross country team finished fifth overall at the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Championships to earn a spot at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) Championships.
Led by veteran Isabelle Kanz, the Gee Gee women placed four runners in the top 30 on their way to scoring 145 points. The total was 11 ahead of Laurentian for the final spot at nationals. Kanz, finishing 20th, completed the 6km course in a time of 22:10.69. She was followed closely across the line by Ruth Burrows, who finished in 22nd, crossing just 4 seconds later.
A spot at the national championships was not the highlight of the day for the women, as first year student Katie Phillips took home the honour of OUA Rookie of the Year based on her 29th place finish. Phillips, from Kleinburg, ON, was the top placing rookie in the event as she crossed the line in a time of 22:23.30. Finishing hot her heels for the top rookie award was Lions member Alex McGowan, running for the University of Waterloo.
On the men’s side, the Gee Gees finished 8th overall, posting a score of 237 points. Matthieu Vierula was the first across the line, finishing the 10km course in 33:25.12 to finish 33rd.
Congratulations go out to former Lions Yves Sikubwabo (Guelph) and Alex Wilkie (Queen’s) who were both named OUA All-Stars for their respective third and fifth place finishes.