The Ryerson men’s soccer team has secured its spot in the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Final Four championship after defeating Carleton University at Downsview Park Saturday.
The win was a major victory for the team, and a key first step in their march to get to the national tournament.
“My expectation was to have our best performance of the year,” said Filip Prostran, Ryerson Rams assistant coach. “If we can build on our last performance then we’ll be in a good spot.”
The game ended with a score of 3-0. This wasn’t as close as many playoff games, which are usually one-goal matches, said Jacob O’Connor, fifth-year business management student who plays defence on the team. “Just to get a result like that gives us a lot of confidence,” he said.
Two of the goals were scored by midfielder Nick Lambis and the third by forward Jamie Baker.
O’Connor and his teammates are looking forward to their next game this Saturday — their first in the OUA Final Four championship. They will be playing against the McMaster Marauders at York University. “They have an excellent team and great coaching,” said Prostran. “We have our work cut out for us.”
If the Rams beat the Marauders, they will move on to the final game on Sunday. If they lose, they will still play Sunday, but it will be in the bronze medal game.
The top two teams in the OUA go on to the Canadian Interuniversity Sport national tournament, so a win against McMaster would also qualify them for the nationals.
No Ryerson athletics team has ever won the OUA championship, though teams like men’s soccer and women’s basketball have come close in recent years.
Winning the OUA would be a victory not just for the team, but for Ryerson athletics as a whole. They hope to bring it home for Ryerson this time, which could also fuel other teams to follow suit. “The athletics department is in it together,” said Prostran. “Whoever wins first, the rest will follow.”
Fan buses will be taking students to and from the games this weekend, leaving from the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
This article was published in The Ryersonian on Nov. 4, 2015.