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Men eliminated, Women advance to semi-final

Men eliminated, Women advance to semi-final

The Ottawa Swans’ record-breaking season came to an end for the men’s side at Humber Lakeshore on Saturday, while the women added a milestone to Swans history by securing the club’s first-ever playoff win and advancing to the semi-final.

The Swans were greeted in Toronto by heavy rain and unfavourable conditions which were sure to challenge all teams. The women took the pitch first, to face the favoured Etobicoke Kangaroos on their home ground. The Lady Swans ended their regular season with a home game win, and were eager to follow that with a big win on the road. Despite the morning’s long drive, the Swans were switched on from the first ball-up, immediately setting the tone for a physical battle and getting the first points on the scoreboard.

The wet weather brought the ball to the ground often, and the Swans were clearly hungrier for possession of the footy by being first to the ball and winning more contests. Despite Etobicoke’s efforts to control the ball, the Swans relentlessly fought back, keeping the footy in their offensive end for the majority of the game and steadily increasing their lead.

Defensively, Margo Legault consistently limited the Roos’ chances at goals, creating a near impenetrable wall at the half-back line and shutting down the efforts of the opposition. Emma Dickinson and Kirsten Bodashefsky maintained control in the mid-field and led the offensive attack, each kicking a goal and ensuring the forward line had ample opportunities to score points.

The Swans kept the lead all game, only giving up one goal to the Roos in the final quarter. This is the first playoff win the Swans have ever had, for either the men’s and women’s sides.  “We earned this landmark win, and I’m proud of this team,” said Head Coach Chris Lockhart. “Despite harsh conditions, no one gave up and we fought hard to the end,” he added.

Ottawa Swans 4.9 (32) defeat Etobicoke Kangaroos 1.5 (11) at Humber Lakeshore to advance to semi-finals. Swans goal kickers: Kirsten Bodashefsky, Amanda Paradis, Emma Dickinson and Erin Armstrong.

The Ottawa Swans men and Toronto Rebels came into the elimination final tied for 4th place in league standings. Despite the rain eventually letting up, the heavy ground conditions persisted into the afternoon, making for a difficult game between these evenly matched sides. It was a low scoring game accordingly, which was primarily attributed to a hard-working back line for the Swans who kept the opposition to a low score.

An unfortunate shoulder injury early in the game led to the loss of a key Swans player, Ronan Shaughnessy, and the team was forced to adapt accordingly. The back line, led by Jay Goldhawk, fearlessly repelled several Rebel attacks on goals. The Swans were supported up the ground by rookie Brendan Woods, Swans captain Darren Roffey, Drew Wilson and Toby Campain.

In the end, the Swans were unable to overpower the Toronto Rebels. “We simply weren’t converting our own opportunities well enough,” said Head Coach Rod Frank. “That made the difference at the end of the day.”

The Swans men had a great overall season, with many “firsts” for the club – including qualifying for finals. “We’ve learned a lot from our first finals campaign,” said Frank, who is already looking forward to next season. “We are going to re-group and return next year ready to take this club to the next level.”

Ottawa Swans 1.9 (15) defeated by Toronto Rebels 5.10 (40) at Humber Lakeshore. Swans goal kicker: Michael Kozlowski.

The women’s team will face the High Park Demons on Saturday, September 14th at 3pm at Humber Lakeshore. 

 

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