As this season ends, Nouse reviews the highs and lows of the last nine months.
This year has been a highly successful one for York’s sports teams, both in their respective BUSA leagues and in the two annual inter-university competitions.
York finished in the top 40 in the overall BUSA standings, avast improvement over last year, in which they finished 52nd. York took yet another comfortable victory in the annual Varsity contest – the fourth in succession since the competition’s inception. York dominated the contest, beating York St. John by 55 points to 16.
2008’s Roses competition however, marked the closest victory in the event’s history. A last minute equalising goal from Richard De Boltz in Sunday afternoon’s Hockey encounter took York over the 124 point mark, securing victory. Not only was this a historic victory because of its closeness, but it also saw York move in front in the overall victory tally for the first time in 40 years.
In her inaugural speech, AU President Jo Carter claimed one primary objective: to win the Roses competition away from home. Not only did she succeed in this, but also successfully put through a UGM motion to raise the profile of sport at the University of York. The first evidence of this was seen in the refurbishment of the Sports Centre as part of a one million pound overall investment into sport at York.
However, reaction to the initial restructure of the Sports Centre has not all been positive, with heavy criticism of its impracticality. Although floor space has been enlarged, the usability of the weights area has decreased and the temperature in the new upstairs facility is frequently uncomfortable. With York leading at Roses and the reputation of a new Sports Centre to promote, AU President elect Alex Lacy has a lot of responsibility on his shoulders in the coming year.
Only time will tell whether he can succeed Jo Carter as an effective representative of the Athletic Union.
Men’s Cricket 1sts – BUSA Position: League 2B, 2nd
This year was rather a non-event for the Cricket squad, with only three BUSA matches being played. Comfortable wins against Huddersfield and Sheffield Hallam were followed by a close loss to league winners Leeds. However, the season will probably be remebered for the remarkable 1-run loss against Lancaster at Roses.
Netball 1sts – BUSA Position: League 4B, 4th
After a re-organisation of the Netball league structure pushed them down to League 4B, York’s netballers were looking to bounce back immediately this season.. However, they finished an agonising 3 points off promotion, a disappointment compounded by their narrow 34-36 away loss to eventual league winners Newcastle 2nds.
Men’s Football 1sts – BUSA Position: League 3B, 1st
A tense but deserved win in their promotion play-off against Newcastle 1sts capped a successful season for York’s footballers, who comfortably topped their BUSA group before reaching the quarter-finals of the Knockout Plate. Unfortunately, a loss to rivals Lancaster at Roses tarred an otherwise good season.
Women’s Rugby 1sts – BUSA Position: League 2B, 2nd
A comprehensive, if low-scoring, defeat of Lancaster at Roses capped an outstanding season for probably York’s most improved team. From being barely able to score points in previous seasons, the team blossomed this year, and were unfortunate not to be promoted from their league after finishing level on points with the winners.
Women’s Hockey 1sts – BUSA Position: League 3B, 1st
A stand-out season for the club saw them dominate their division to finish top by 7 points. However, They were unable to progress past Round 2 in the Knockout Plate. They were then outclassed by Lancaster, and by their star player Ilka Krieger, at Roses, losing both the indoor and outdoor versions of the game.
Men’s Rugby 1sts – BUSA Position: League 2B, 3rd
A charge to the BUSA knockout plate quarter-final and their first overall victory over Lancaster at Roses for years were the highlights of a highly successful season for the Men’s Rugby club. It could have been even better for the team, but for a close 7-10 away defeat at Leed’s 2nds in the Plate quarter-final.
Men’s Hockey 1sts – BUSA Position: League 2B, 6th
The 2007/08 season will be one to forget for the Men’s team, as they managed to only scrape together three points in their division, and they were unsurprisingly relegated. However, in direct contrast to the women, the men redeemed themselves at Roses, with their last-gasp equaliser clinching the points needed for victory.
Men’s Table-Tennis 1sts – BUSA Position: League 1A, 2nd
The only York team to reach the British University Championships in Sheffield, the Table-Tennis team certainly had a successful year. After finishing runner-up in their league, they progressed to the final of the Knockout Trophy, losing out 1-9 to Manchester 1sts. A surprise loss to Lancaster at Roses spoilt an otherwise great season.
Women’s Lacrosse 1sts – BUSA Position: League 2A, 3rd
The Women’s Lacrosse club was unlucky this season to be up against remarkably strong Manchester Met and Durham teams in their league. They were dominant against the rest of the league, racking up 85 goals and conceding only 14 in their other four games, and will likely be pressing for promotion next year.
Men’s Volleyball 1sts – BUSA Position: League 1A, 4th
It was a fairly average season for one of York’s perennially successful teams, finishing comfortably mid-table in their league for an unremarkable season. They were denied the chance to finish the season with a flourish when Lancaster were unable to field a team at Roses, leaving them content to thrash them in the Mixed game.