As the play-offs approach, the Marauders look back on a brilliant regular season

Last season the men's soccer team made reasonable progress throughout the regular season, with an overall record of 6-3-2, earning them a place in the playoffs. Unfortunately, this euphoria was short lived, and the Marauders came out crashing in the first round, where they lost against Carleton Ravens three to one. This year they’re looking for more. 

The team had a very successful regular season this time around, finishing with a very impressive 8-3-1 record and earning them second place spot in the OUA Central Division, just behind Toronto Metropolitan University.  

“I think that the regular season was very good. We ended up finishing second place in our division, which is the best place Mac has finished in the past ten years. So, of course we were very happy about it as a team,” said Justin Baker, a second year life sciences student playing as a midfielder for the Marauders. 

“I think that the regular season was very good. We ended up finishing second place in our division, which is the best place Mac has finished in the past ten years. So, of course we were very happy about it as a team.”

Justin Baker, Midfielder on the Men's Soccer Team

The team entered the playoffs on a high note, but they have a difficult road ahead. The first matchup for them will be the Guelph Gryphons.  

“There’s a lot of momentum going into the playoffs this season, we have our first game against Guelph in the quarterfinals which should be a great game. What motivates us even more is that we lost against them in regular season, so we want some revenge,” explained Baker. 

Another aspect that shapes up any team is the chemistry and the atmosphere that gets built up in the squad over time. Prior to the playoffs, it’s key that the group is in good spirits, as the pressure can only build from game to game in the final stages of the championship.  

“We are all feeling good on the team. We have been putting a lot of energy into training just for the preparations against Guelph. We are all very confident in our abilities and confident that we can get the result we need against them. It would motivate us even more if we beat them on Saturday,” said Baker. 

Baker also transfered from Simon Fraser University, Canada’s only NCAA affiliated soccer team. He is one of the players that debuted for McMaster this year. According to his McMaster Athletics profile, he achieved a total of 250 minutes over nine games for the Marauders, proving that his potential is not to be overlooked. In the last game of the season against Laurier, he even scored the game winning goal, securing the Marauders four to one victory.  

“Over the course of this season I played quite well. I drifted between playing in a center mid to a winger position, as I like playing both positions. It’s been good getting chemistry with the team through playing consistently, which is something great for my first year here,” explained Baker. 

Being a newer member of the team, it took some time for Baker to adjust to the style of play, something even the most experienced players experience to some extent. As the season progressed, he began to embrace a larger role with the team, quickly adjusting and becoming more comfortable, leading to his late season success. 

“Although I didn’t start off playing every game, near the end of the season I integrated myself more with the team, which helped me gain more confidence. To end the regular season, I scored a goal against Laurier which felt amazing,” said Baker.  

“Although I didn’t start off playing every game, near the end of the season I integrated myself more with the team, which helped me gain more confidence. To end the regular season, I scored a goal against Laurier which felt amazing.”

Justin Baker, Men's Soccer Team

Although they have been here before, the Marauders certainly feel that there is potential to progress further than the quarter finals in the championship. Their first playoff game is on Sat. Oct. 29, against the Guelph Gryphons at 1:00 PM. 

JOVAN POPOVIC / SPORTS EDITOR

In one of the most highly anticipated exhibition games of the year, the Marauders lose after four sets against the NCAA division one powerhouse

Last season the men’s volleyball team made a huge statement after finishing the regular season undefeated and winning the Ontario University Athletics provincial title. Now McMaster University’s strongest team is finally getting their new season started.  

Given the success from the previous season, the team got the opportunity to have a very meticulous preseason lined up. Prior to the 2021-2022 season, they only played one preseason game against Queen's University, where they were victorious with a three to one result.   

This season, however, has been much more exciting for the Marauders. Thus far the team has played four exhibition games to prepare for the OUA season, but the most exciting of the group just took place on Oct. 15.  

The big game came against American powerhouse school, the Ohio State Buckeyes. Historically speaking, the team usually attempts to face at least one American counterpart each season, and with the popularity of American college sports, it quickly becomes one of the most exciting games of the school year despite not counting in the standings.   

The big game came against American powerhouse school, the Ohio State Buckeyes. Historically speaking, the team usually attempts to face at least one American counterpart each season, and with the popularity of American college sports, it quickly becomes one of the most exciting games of the school year despite not counting in the standings.   

The Marauders would end up losing by a final score of three to one but kept it close throughout with the individual set scores being 20-25, 24-26, 28-26 and 17-25. They continuously showed resilience, as proven by the scores heading north of the typical 25 on multiple occasions.  

The Marauders will have a chance at redemption following the winter break in January, when they continue the North America Challenge. This time they’ll match up against the 2018 and 2019 American national champion and 2022 runner up Long Beach State University Dirtbags. The matchups will take place on Jan. 5 and Jan. 7 in Hamilton.  

Despite the disappointing outcome of the Buckeyes game, the team remains one of the strongest in the continent. They match up against tough opponents for a reason and look to take the competitive mindset from these games into the regular season as they attempt to go for the gold once again.  

Founded in 2019, Forge FC has made considerable progress in becoming one of Canada’s fastest-growing soccer clubs, representing Hamilton in the highest spotlight 

This past January, the Silhouette covered Forge FC’s rise in popularity in the region and beyond. Although their season is about to end, the club has achieved considerable success in the past few months that should not go unnoticed.  

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Their most noticeable success story comes from the high mountains of Mexico, where the club from Hamilton had the opportunity to compete in the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football Champions League against one of the largest clubs in the continent, Cruz Azul. Although Hamilton’s best couldn’t force an upset, losing zero to one and one to three against the Mexican giants, they managed to make a statement to foreign clubs there is a new force in southwestern Ontario.   

“It has been a busy season. We have hosted tens of thousands of fans over 17 home games, including our first-ever Champions League tie and Canadian Championship Final losing to [Toronto] FC on penalties. It has been a strong season, something we are used to by now, but that has been positively reflected in our growing crowds and supporters,” said James Hutton, one of the Sales Leaders at the club.   

More recently, men’s Canadian soccer has also taken a rise in popularity. In March this year, the team managed to end a 36-year drought of not qualifying for the World Cup. To get to the grand stage in Qatar, the team won against big names such as the United States, Mexico and Costa Rica among others.   

“On top of the club success, being able to leverage the men’s World Cup run has been big in shifting soccer interest locally, specifically with our growing league, [ the CPL],” explained Hutton.   

With the regular season behind them, Forge are ready to move into the playoffs and fight for another Canadian Premier League (CPL) title.   

“We want more postseason success! Since the league was founded in 2019, we have been in the finals every year. We have two big games against Calgary, which we beat in the inaugural finals. We are away in Calgary this weekend, then host them in the second leg on the 23rd for a place in the finals. With some luck, the top seed Ottawa will slip up and we will host the finals as well,” said Hutton.   

As Forge is a new club, promoting the club brand means a lot to the reputation of the club. This includes activities such as engaging with the community, game activities and more.   

“It takes a strong mix of many things such as game activities, reaching out to different communities, and spreading the Forge brand around. We hosted hundreds of kids at our Skills Clinic, run by Forge players. Just last week we hosted our first Spark Summit, connecting professional women in sports business and inspire conversations around fostering gender equity in sports. Finally, in November we are looking at leveraging the World Cup games to help convert soccer fans in Canada Red to Forge Orange. . . We need to keep doing everything we can to drive fans to supporting Forge.” said Hutton.   

While more fans start getting familiar with the new club around the block, the players and the staff at Forge do not fail to impress. Having already made an appearance on the continental stage, the club aims to make even further progress in the coming years.   

In a very one-sided game against the Waterloo Warriors, the Marauders gain momentum moving into homecoming weekend

Photo: Graphic request made week prior  

McMasters football team kicked off their Ontario University Athletics regular season with a dreadful losing streak. With their first three games all ending up as losses, they found themselves at the bottom of the OUA standings — an unfamiliar position for a team who is only one season removed from their provincial championship run.   

Making matters even worse for the Marauders, their second game of the year, a 39 to one win over York, was overturned due to a player registration violation committed by the McMaster team. As a direct result, the football team started their season with three games and three losses.   

On the weekend of Sep. 17, the Marauders rebounded with an impressive win over the Waterloo Warriors. With a final line score of 43 to zero, the team finally showed what they can do. It appears that despite the poor start, they have not given up.   

In all four quarters of the game, the Marauders dominated. The first quarter ended 14 to zero, the second 24 to zero, the third 34 to zero and finally ended with the 43 to zero score.   

Last season the Marauders dominated the Warriors with a 34-13 final score but they took it to a whole new level this time around, increasing their win margin by a whopping 22 points. It was also the first time that the Warriors had been shutout since 2016.  

This successful game should be a confidence booster for the Marauders, though there are still some challenging games ahead for the team, making them one to watch this season. 

After a long summer break, the women’s hockey team is showing the community how it’s done  

McMaster University has seen success in many different sports and now, one more sport is making the lunge towards success. The McMaster’s women's hockey team is currently in their second successive season on a mission to finally join the OUA. 

Last year the team spoke to the Silhouette about the funding they receive from the university and how it is not possible for them to secure a very large budget due to the team not officially representing McMaster on a larger scale in Ontario. However, this year the team is more optimistic and is excited to get back on ice.  

“I am extremely excited to get back into the hockey mood this year, especially after navigating how to plan and play out our season with COVID-19 regulations last year. We have been planning and preparing since May and everyone at the club has been in consistent contact with each other to make this season a success,” said Natasia Kurysko, a team veteran, now in her fourth year at McMaster.   

“I am extremely excited to get back into the hockey mood this year, especially after navigating how to plan and play out our season with COVID-19 regulations last year. We have been planning and preparing since May and everyone at the club has been in consistent contact with each other to make this season a success."

Natasia Kurysko, Marauders hockey Player

This season the team has also gained popularity through their consistent efforts at to better publicise the team on campus. As part of this, the team was recently at Clubsfest in front of the Burke Science Building, where students could visit them and learn about their tryouts for the new season.   

“Our success at Clubsfest led to a successful turnout at our information session and we are expecting a whopping 40-45 tryout participants this week. We have been working so hard to promote our team via social media and word of mouth. Honestly, I never really miss an opportunity to talk about the team to anyone,” explained Kurysko. 

Although the team is still not a part of the OUA, they will still have a remarkably busy season ahead of them. 

“We will have a 16-game season. This may be increased to a 24-game season, depending on what the teams in our loop vote on doing, as one team just dropped out. Our weekly schedule remains consistent every year; one team workout with the strength and practice and one to two games. Once the tryouts are complete, we are going to move straight to practices and workouts in the week of Oct 2. After all our preparation is done, our games are scheduled to begin the week after reading week,” explained Kurysko. 

Not only is the team putting all their efforts into preparing for the season, but they have also shown their professionalism off the ice too. Team members can often be found out in the community, looking to support others off the ice as well. 

“One thing that is extremely exciting this year is that we will be back volunteering with Skate the Dream, which will be run by our very own Megan Neufeld! Skate the Dream is a program run by the children club of Hamilton that gives underprivileged youth an opportunity to learn how to skate. Three to four of us from the team go out to sessions run two to three times a week and teach kids how to skate,” explained Kurysko.  

“One thing that is extremely exciting this year is that we will be back volunteering with Skate the Dream, which will be run by our very own Megan Neufeld! Skate the Dream is a program run by the children club of Hamilton that gives underprivileged youth an opportunity to learn how to skate. Three to four of us from the team go out to sessions run two to three times a week and teach kids how to skate,”

Natasia Kurysko, Marauders hockey Player

McMaster’s women’s hockey team is not just your ordinary varsity team and while they may not be an official part of the OUA yet, their effort at expanding, helping the community and making sure everyone feels welcome on their team certainly makes them one of the most respected teams at the university to anyone who knows about them. 

McMaster widens recreational class opportunities for students heading into the 2022-2023 school year

As the fall semester takes off, the McMaster University Athletics and Recreation Department is continuing to provide students with new opportunities and classes to take part in. One of the benefits of their recreational classes this year is the extremely wide variety to be offered. 

This fall semester, the university is providing 80 different classes for students, from ballet to spin class to belly dancing to fencing and more. Additionally, many of these programs offer different options for distinct levels of skill, providing beginner, intermediate and advanced classes.  

The classes hosted by McMaster Athletics and Recreation do not require personnel to be McMaster students, as anyone is allowed to participate so long as they are high school age and up. No membership is required, but McMaster students receive a discount on the classes. To acquire more information on the scheduling for the recreational classes, you can visit the weekly schedule for the fall term here.  

To register for the Fall term classes, you can visit the Athletics and Recreation program website here. The pricing for the programs ranges from $23.90 for yoga to $101.77 for Muay Thai, with most of the programs lasting 10 weeks. 

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