The Spirit is Back: Recapping the Fall Athletics Season
Even before the 2022-23 academic school year began, the Athletics Programme at St. Michael’s College School (SMCS) was already underway!
August training and tryout camps for the Junior Soccer team, Junior and Senior Football teams, and the Senior Hockey Team started what would be an exciting season. A total of 356 student-athletes competed for 13 teams across six sports in a season that would see the first fall association playoffs and championships awarded since 2019.
“It was exciting to have a full fall season again. Training camps, tournaments, U.S. trips, full league play, and playoffs provided a complete experience for the boys to test themselves as teams and individuals,” says Alex Frescura, Director of Athletics. “The Homecoming weekend has been missed for the last few years, and it was amazing to again see a packed stadium with the bands playing and the M-Squad leading the cheers! All the teams did a fantastic job representing themselves and the school. A great start to what we expect to be a very positive year in athletics!”
Hard work paid off for our Grade 7 and 8 runners as the U13 team took home the U13 Boys Conference of Independent Schools Athletic Association (CISAA) Championship.
In the championship race at Centennial Park, Jackson Ward finished second, Ben Maiese finished fifth, and Jack Maiese finished seventh. Joseph White was right on their heels finishing in 20th place. Cale Scott, Chris Perrin, and Lucas Kulidjian weren’t far behind and saw their training pay off as members of this gold-medal team.
The CISAA Varsity Cross Country Championships were held at Lakefield College. The day got off to a great start led by the Grade 9 Novice Boys team. Christian Babony took home the silver medal, followed closely by Quinn French who captured the bronze medal, just ahead of teammate Rohan Jalapayan who was fourth! Calum Murphy and Luke Adorante also posted top 20 finishes to round out the team performance. Together, they captured the Novice Boys CISAA championship! The Grade 10 Junior Boys team made a statement as well, capturing their own CISAA title. Matthew Kmecz led the way, controlling the 5 km race at the halfway point and didn’t look back. Kmecz finished ahead of the pack and won the Junior Boys CISAA Cross Country Championship gold medal. Teammates, Carter Albiani was sixth, Ben Ottey was eighth, Thomas Arciero was 11th, and Dallas St. John finished 15th!
In the senior boys’ division, SMCS took on a very competitive field and battled to a fifth-place finish. The team was led by a strong sixth-place finish by Anish Krishanthan. Emilio Kandankery, outstanding Grade 9 rookie Timothy Fortier, Jack Major, and Henry Hicks rounded out a strong team finish.
When the overall scores were tallied, SMCS was once again crowned Overall Boys CISAA Champions for an unprecedented 43rd year in a row!
At the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) Championships, the Novice Boys team of Quinn French, Christian Babony, Rohan Jayapalan, Luke Adorante, Logan Pistilli, and Cruz Molina had great races, narrowly missing the podium, but still managing to finish as the fifth fastest team in Ontario. The Junior Boys team, with only four runners and no substitutes, managed to pull off tremendous races! Kmecz turned in the performance of the day, finishing 10th overall in the province. Ben Ottey, Ethan Poon, and Thomas Arciero each had outstanding races contributing to the team’s OFSAA bronze medal finish. Anish Krishanthan rounded out the day representing SMCS in the Senior Boys Division. With a Novice Boys’ fifth-place finish and the Junior Boys’ third-place finish, the overall team scores earned SMCS a second-place overall OFSAA finish.
After a physically and mentally demanding pre-Labour Day training camp, both junior and senior teams looked forward to competitive seasons.
Following a strong regular season, the Junior Kerry Blues earned a spot in the league semi-final against St. Andrew’s College (SAC). After reciprocal exchanges resulted in a 14-14 half-time score, the second half belonged to SMCS as they ran their way to a 38-14 final. In the final against Upper Canada College (UCC), our neighbours earned their first title in over 10 years, leaving SMCS as CISAA silver medalists with an opportunity to represent CISAA in the Jr. Metro Bowl Tournament. The quarter-final against Holy Trinity School, played in the season’s first big snowfall, was highlighted by Raine Kreklewtez’s, Grade 10, 109-yard touchdown run to close out the first half, giving the Kerry Blues the momentum needed to carry them to a 21-12 win. In the tournament semi-final, SMCS bowed out to a dominant group from Nelson High School, the eventual champions.
The Senior Kerry Blues finished their 2022 season campaign with an overall 2-7 regular season record and a 1-3 showing in CISAA. For the first time in Kerry Blues history, the team travelled down south to play their U.S. counterparts in the state of New York on three separate occasions. The Kerry Blues advanced to the CISAA semi-finals where they lost to UCC but did manage to secure a berth in the OFSAA Bowl against Thomas A. Stewart Secondary School. With only 12 graduating players, the bulk of the team returns next year to be joined by a strong Grade 10 class moving up from Junior.
Although CISAA Golf is a spring sport, the initial team tryouts, OFSAA qualifier, and OFSAA Championships are held in the fall.
Two members of the SMCS Blue Eagles Golf Team participated in the OFSAA Golf Championships at Firerock Golf Club in London, Ontario.
The conditions were very difficult with the cold, wind, and rain all playing a significant factor on scoring. Grade 11, Connor Castellarin fired a respectable two-day total of 168, earning him a tie for 13th position in the Individual High School division. Grade 9, Matthew Simpson lit up the scorecard on day one, firing a 2-over par, 74, and a day two, 4-over par, 76, which earned him an outstanding sixth-place finish in the Individual Open division.
This year’s U14 soccer team was very stout defensively, finishing with a 2-2-3 record. SMCS was the only team to take points from the eventual champions, UCC during the season. The team is poised for a strong season next year with core players returning.
After a strong regular season, SMCS played host to the CISAA semi-final and final. The team carried the play during their game against UCC, finishing with a convincing 7-1 victory. Goals were scored by Tyler Young, Matthew Lo Torto, Luca Calvo, James Muzzo, Daniel Vitullo, and Carmine-Luca Raviele, with Young netting two. The final match saw the boys face off against the talented Royal St. George’s College (RSGC) with both teams battling to a scoreless draw after regulation time. However, just before the end of the first overtime, Michael Piccininno found an opening through the traffic in front of the RSGC net to score a golden goal and bring home the Junior CISAA Championship!
After an impressive 5-1 regular season, along with strong showings at two showcase tournaments, the Senior Soccer team entered CISAA playoffs as one of the top seeds. The squad hosted De La Salle College at home in the quarter-finals and advanced with a commanding 6-2 win. In the semi-final match against SAC, the boys found themselves down 1-0 going into the second half. Josh Annibale came to the rescue and found the back of the net to even the score, paving the way for Josiah Bethune to score the winner in the dying minutes. In the CISAA Championship at UCC, the boys jumped out to a 1-0 lead, but UCC used their home-field advantage to pull away for the 3-1 win, leaving SMCS as silver medalists in a very competitive league.
U14 Blue (Division I)
After a very tightly contested regular season, SMCS Blue Strikers entered the CISAA playoffs as the third-ranked team. In the semi-finals, SMCS came away with a 25-17, 25-10 win. In the gold medal round, the Strikers faced an undefeated SAC team, losing the match point 26-24, coming away with the CISAA silver medal.
U14 White (Division II)
The U14 White Strikers hosted the ‘Fun Side Season-End Tournament’ on home court, using their home-court advantage to dominate tournament play winning the final two games of the season!
Despite a strong regular season, a young SMCS Junior team bowed out in the CISAA semi-finals versus UCC. After witnessing great improvements over the year, the team is set up to have everyone back next season.
Following a third place regular season finish, the Senior Strikers won their quarter-final game against Crestwood Preparatory College in a quick three-set game to secure their place in the ‘CISAA Final Four Tournament’ at UCC. With a shot at redemption in their semi-final against Crescent School, to whom they had lost to earlier this season, the Strikers did not disappoint, winning the five-set battle. SMCS saved its best game of the season for the CISAA finals but couldn’t hold off UCC long enough. In the end, the team captured the CISAA silver medal.