By James Mirtle
Even though the season doesn’t start for another few weeks, the Ryerson men’s volleyball team is already pulling in the hardware.
On Sunday, the host Rams won the Fila Invitational championship in convincing fashion, defeating a highly-touted squad from York University in three straight sets.
“It was a great weekend,” said Rams coach Mirek Porosa. “We’re really mentally tough right now. We’d be down eight, nine points, but we didn’t get down on ourselves and came back.”
Ryerson closed out the tournament with an amazing 14 straight set victories. In all, the Rams conceded only two sets over five games. On Friday afternoon, they beat York in five sets.
Ryerson then swept the remaining three schoolsQueen’s University, McGill University and the University of Windsorin three sets, to setup Sunday’s championship game.
“It went as we planned,” said setter Lukas Porosa, who was named a tournament all-star along with teammates Anton Hauser and newcomer Nicolas Beaver. “Even before the tournament we thought we were the favorite, and as the games went on, we got better as a team.”
In addition to being cross-town rivals, the Rams also had added motivation against York. Last year at the Fila Invitational, it was York who took the championship by defeating Ryerson in the final game.
York finished last year with a record of 14-4, tying them for first with the University of Toronto for top spot in Ontario University Athletics. Even without star rightside Ryan Vandenburg, who was in Montreal on a class trip, and Matt Fugard, who continues to await an arbitration decision on his eligibility, Ryerson breezed through the competition.Hauser, who led the Rams charge with his unstoppable smashes, was named tournament MVP.
If this weekend was any indication, the losses will be few and far between for the team this season. “It’s going to be tough to play us,” said Lukas.”We don’t have any weaknesses when we’re on our game.”
It’s a bold statement. So far, however, his team has yet to prove him wrong.