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This Week in Golden Hawk Athletics...
The Golden Hawks’ overall record now stands at 9-6-1 after this week’s play. Headlining the action this week were the start of the varsity season with wins going to football, baseball, soccer and rugby.

Another promising season on the gridiron featured a great start and the first big challenge for the purple and gold when Laurier played two football games last week. Ranked sixth nationally, the Golden Hawks opened up on the road with a 36-0 shutout victory over the University of Toronto Varsity Blues in front of 2,347 fans on Labour Day. Rushing was the name of the game on offence as the team compiled 299 yards on the ground, led by fourth year running back Mike Montoya who picked up 160 yards and three touchdowns. Receiver Josh Bishop also had a career game pulling in five receptions for 134 yards.

The defence played strong limiting Toronto to 181 total yards and linebacker Mitchell Bosch had the game’s only takeaway.

On Saturday, the Golden Hawks continued their road travel heading into London for a battle with second nationally ranked arch-rival Western Mustangs. The highly anticipated game was televised across the country and saw Laurier kept scoreless until the final 21 seconds in a 30-7 loss. 8,781 fans packed TD Waterhouse Stadium to see Western out gain Laurier 435 to 208 in offensive yards. Laurier’s only score was a touchdown pass from backup quarterback Evan Pawliuk to second-year receiver Shamawd Chambers. Pawliuk, who entered the game after Luke Thompson had gone 11 of 21 for only 78 yards and one pick, complete three of his nine pass attempts for the single score and two picks, one of which was returned for a Mustang touchdown. On the opposite side of the ball Western’s quarterback Michael Faulds led the attack with 315 yards and two touchdown passes. Laurier hosts their first home game of the season Saturday as they welcome their cross-town rival, the Waterloo Warriors at University Stadium for a 1:00 p.m. kickoff.

The men’s baseball team was the first varsity sport to officially begin the regular season and currently sit atop the OUA with a 5-2 record. Laurier started with an away contest against Western on Saturday September 5th at Emslie Field in St. Thomas. Third year David Canavan started on the mound for Laurier and went eight complete innings allowing four runs, only one earned and five hits to the Mustangs. The Golden Hawks committed three errors and managed only one run in the top of the ninth off a wild pitch by rookie William Cook. The day after the tough loss Laurier went to Guelph and swept the Gryphons in doubleheader action. Laurier pulled out a tight 4-3 win in game one after extra innings. Stephen Zagrodny pitched a solid seven-inning game for the first match-up against Guelph. Jeff Brunsek made a note worthy diving catch in left field, and Ryan Panas played a strong game at third base. Laurier totally dominated game two, led by rookie pitcher Andrew Greenberg who completed a one-hit game and had one of the best debuts Laurier has ever seen. The Hawks also had the opportunity to showcase their solid offensive skills in a 11-0 win that included a seven-run fourth. Panas knocked the Golden Hawks first homer of the season over the fence to cap off the inning. Greenberg garnered recognition for his pitching performance, and was named Laurier’s Athlete of the Week. The purple and gold continued their march as the away team with a doubleheader against Brock on Wednesday. For the Badgers in game one, senior Mickey Campeanu pitched the complete game for his first win of the season. Over seven innings of work, he allowed one run on four hits while striking out seven. In game two, Laurier got on the board first adding three runs in the second and two runs in the third to go up by the score of 5-0. Brock added two in the bottom of the third, but it was the scrappy Golden Hawks answering right back in the fourth with two more to regain their five run lead. Laurier's Scott Mahn extended his hit streak to five games going 2-for-3 with an RBI while Elliott Shrive was 1-for-3. The Golden Hawks WESLEY VAN LUVEN recorded the victory after going three complete innings allowing two runs on six hits while striking out four. On Saturday the purple and gold hosted their first games of the 2009 OUA regular season, sweeping a doubleheader against the defending champion McMaster Marauders in the narrowest of margins, winning 6-5 and 9-8. In game one, Laurier jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning and then held on for the victory. In the second game, the Golden Hawks fell behind 7-3 before rallying for four runs in the fourth. The Marauders then held a 8-7 lead heading into the bottom of the 7th, when Laurier scored one to force extras, winning the game in the 10th. With the sweep, the Golden Hawks jumped to first place in OUA.

The #6 nationally ranked women’s soccer team opened their season with a 2-0 record after notching a 1-0 win over the Western Mustangs and a 2-0 victory over the Windsor Lancers. Laurier struck early in their first game of the season as veteran defender Liora Berger beat Windsor netminder Rebecca Singer in the 26th minute to give the Hawks a 1-0 lead. The advantage would stay with the visiting team, as Laurier continued to pressure the Lancers in their own zone. The purple and gold would get on the scoreboard again when Alyssa Coppolino netted the team’s second goal of the game in the 56th minute. Rookie netminder Tristen Vogel earned her first shutout of the season in her first game played as a Golden Hawk. In Laurier’s second match, the Golden Hawks took on a strong Western squad and prevailed. Neither team was able to capitalize on their scoring opportunities in the first half of play. At the break the Mustangs switched up goalies. The Hawks were finally able to get on the scoreboard with a goal from Heather Malizia in the 74th minute.

The #7 ranked men's soccer team started their season on the road with a 1-1 draw against the Windsor Lancers and then a 2-0 loss to the Western Mustangs. The Golden Hawks pressured the Lancers early in their first match of the season and it yielded results. Alex Doma put Laurier on the board first with a goal at the 29 minute mark. The Lancers fought back early in the second half when Ryan Wise  beat Hawk netminder  Jarrett Humphreys to give the home team a tie. Windsor also picked up four yellow cards in the game to four different players. In the second match, the Mustangs got off to a quick start with former Hawk Ryan Avola scoring just 2 minutes into the game.  Western continued to pressure Laurier and eventually Mark Pocrnic scored the home team’s second goal that would ice the game for the Mustangs.

The women’s basketball team hosted the Vermont Catamounts in pre-season action on August 29 that saw Waterloo native May Kotsopoulos lead the Catamounts to a resounding victory. Vermont closed out their Canadian tour with a 111-44 win over the Golden Hawks in front of 279 fans at the Athletic Complex. Earlier in the week the Catamounts defeated the Ottawa Gee Gee’s 71-43 and the Carleton Ravens 82-60. Vermont only brought their senior players on the road trip as NCAA rules prevent freshmen from playing this early in the season. Laurier was also down a player with reigning OUA defensive MVP Renata Adamczyk out with an injury. Vermont opened the scoring in the first quarter and never looked back earning a commanding 17-point lead by the end of the first quarter. The Hawks continued to pressure the visitors in the fourth quarter and started to put up some points. Vermont scored 18 in the final frame with Laurier scoring 14. The Golden Hawks top scorer was Alena Luciani with nine points, followed by Megan Grant with eight.

The Golden Hawks’ men’s rugby team kicked off the season with a hard fought 24-20 victory over the Waterloo Warriors. The forwards dominated at the breakdown which led to several Waterloo penalties. Laurier continued their dominance in the line outs as flanker Alex St. John scored his first of two tries. By half time the Golden Hawks had a relatively comfortable lead with the Warriors only scoring three points. Laurier’s momentum started to slow down when team captain Justin Bergen was binned after the Hawks received several penalties for infractions at the breakdown. The Warriors took advantage as they used their numbers to score a try. Once Bergen returned to the field the official penalized Laurier again, this time sending off forward Jeff Pickel. The Warriors continued to apply pressure and constantly test the Golden Hawks defence, but it was to no avail. The Golden Hawks were triumphant as the final score was 24-20. In addition, the Laurier men's rugby team started a new tradition as they had a moment of silence before the game to honor their fallen teammate Dave Laforest who passed away last year in a tragic residence fire. This tradition will continue as before each home game there will be a moment of silence. The team dedicated the win to him.On Saturday, the men's rugby team took on the Western Mustangs and were defeated 22-14. Laurier was the first team to score a try, but the visiting team put 22 points on the board before the Golden Hawks were able to score another try. Both team's played well and the purple and gold showed they were ready to compete in the OUA.

The Wilfrid Laurier women's rugby team opened their season with a 90-0 loss to the Guelph Gryphons at University Stadium. Laurier's inability to dedicate one tackler to one player caused many line breaks for the Gryphon's. In addition, Guelph utilized the offload to score many of their tries as well as their pace on the wing. The Gryphon's, who racked up 16 tries in the match, were led by their inside center Brittany Benn who scored four tries and kicked four converts for a total of twenty-eight points. Despite the Gryphon's dominant scrums and powerful offence the Hawks held their heads high throughout the duration of the game.

Here is the schedule for the next week of Golden Hawk action:

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Men’s Baseball  vs. Waterloo, Bechtel Park, 7:00 p.m.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Men’s Baseball vs. Terriers, Bechtel Park, 7:00 p.m.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Women’s Lacrosse vs. Western, London, 9:00 a.m.
Men’s Football vs. Waterloo, University Stadium, 1:00 p.m.
Women’s Lacrosse vs. Guelph, London, 1:00 p.m.
Men’s Baseball vs. Toronto, Scarborough, 1:00 pm
Women’s Rugby vs. Brock, St. Catharines, 1:00 pm.
Men’s Rugby vs. Toronto, UTSC Field 1:00 p.m.
Women’s Soccer vs. Brock, St. Catherine’s, 1:00 p.m.
Men’s Soccer vs. Brock, St. Catherine’s, 3:15 p.m.
Cross Country at Vic Matthews Open, Guelph

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Men’s Baseball vs. Western, Brantford, 1:00 p.m.
Women’s Lacrosse vs. McMaster, London, 1:00 p.m.
Women’s Soccer vs. McMaster, Hamilton, 1:00 p.m.
Men’s Soccer vs. McMaster, Hamilton, 3:15 p.m.
Men’s Baseball vs. Western, Brantford, 3:30 p.m.
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