Light rain in the morning gave way to sunny skies and the hottest Upper Canada College May Day in recent memory.
The annual showcase of the school’s spring sports teams took place on fields around the Deer Park campus on May 9, with UCC squads going up against Conference of Independent Schools Athletic Association opponents.
Things got underway on the Prep Field, where the Grade 7 softball team looked good in racking up 17-6 and 27-11 victories over The Sterling Hall School and St. Andrew’s College (SAC) respectively. Their Grade 8 teammates didn’t fare quite as well against the same two teams, defeating SAC 17-12 in its opener but going down 26-5 to Sterling Hall.
The team that many of those players aspire to join when they’re older, the varsity baseball team, had to cancel its 11 a.m. game against Trinity College School due to a shortage of players. The 15-man roster was depleted to eight due to five injuries and two players who had tournaments with outside school teams, leaving the home squad one player short of what’s needed to fill all of the positions.
The U14 and U16 tennis teams swept SAC five matches to none, and the varsity team claimed 13 victories and just three losses in its exhibition matches against the same school.
“Plenty of crowd support, enthusiastic play on the courts by the boys and beautiful weather made for a wonderful day of tennis,” says varsity coach Derek Poon.
The results were more mixed in the other racquet sport played on May Day. The three varsity singles players all won their matches handily in straight sets, while the two doubles teams also claimed straight sets victories in defeating Crescent School five games to none.
The U14 and U16 badminton teams both lost to their respective opponents three games to two, with the younger boys playing Royal St. George’s College and the older ones facing off against Crescent.
“The boys’ skills have really improved,” said U14 coach Cecilia Farrol. “They battled hard and scored many points, even in the games we lost.”
UCC held off a spirited Trinity College School team to take a victory in a close 30-over game on the Lord’s Field cricket pitch, where the home team fielded first.
In rugby action, Crescent jumped out to a 12-0 lead before UCC’s junior varsity players put five points on the board late in the first half. That was all the offence the team could muster, however, as Crescent went on to a 19-5 win.
It was a different story in the varsity rugby game, where the Blues squared off against SAC. UCC led 5-0 at the half and built that lead to 22 with seven minutes left before SAC broke the shutout in the last three minutes to make the final score 22-7.
Almost as entertaining as the match was the halftime bubble soccer game in which a dozen students wore large, see-through inflatable bubbles that covered them from their heads to their knees, allowing them to run and kick the ball. But it seemed the combatants were more intent on hitting and knocking each other over than they were on scoring goals, making it look like an athletic version of the bumper car ride you find on a midway.
The final game of the afternoon was varsity lacrosse and, though the Blues put in an honest effort and kept things close, the boys ended up on the losing end of an 11-8 decision to SAC.
The beautiful weather may have cut back a bit on May Day attendance, as students and other community members may have been out pursuing more active or leisurely pursuits of their own. But for those who came out, and Cookie was among those who did, there was more to do than watch and cheer.
The Blues Booster Club (BBC) made sure people didn’t go hungry, as its barbecue was always full of hamburgers, hot dogs and sausages. Another BBC tent was dedicated to selling branded spirit wear, umbrellas, cowbells and horns.
The UCC Entrepreneurial Club also had a table and sold doughnuts and crafts in support of Children of Hope Uganda.
Here are some May Day photos: