After the 2020-21 season was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many looked to the return of sport as a celebration. Across Canada, student-athletes had trained 18-months waiting for their next opportunity to compete in the sports they love. When the Carleton Ravens returned to action not only did they celebrate the moment, they took full advantage.
On September 11, 2021, the Ravens women’s rugby team ushered in the post-pandemic sports era with their first game in over 600 days. As they took to the pitch at Ravens’ Perch the young squad quickly set the tone for an impressive fall. Despite losing their opening game the team’s intensity kick-started a record-breaking fall.
The fall season would see Ravens teams set new single-game scoring records, and win provincial and national medals while individual athletes set new program records, earned league honours, and continued to define what it means to be a Raven.
Despite a week 1 loss at home, the Ravens would dominate the RSEQ B Division, outscoring their opponents 263-34 in the regular season finishing second with a 5-1 record and earning themselves a quarter-final matchup against the Concordia Stingers. Celebrating their tenth season as a varsity program, the Ravens had a lot to celebrate in 2021. Facing the Stingers in the quarter-finals, Lauryn Walker (Brampton, Ont.) would shine bright scoring the Ravens’ lone try to propel the team to their first semi-final in program history.
While the Ravens would lose to Laval in the RSEQ semi-final, the year’s story had not been fully written. On November 7 the Ravens would face Montreal for the third time in the season, taking the pivotal rubber match to overtime. After falling behind by two tries in the extra frame, the Ravens would storm back, scoring late in overtime to close the Carabins lead to 5. Then on the final drive of the season, co-captain Anastasia Bourka (Ottawa, Ont.) would break free from mid-field, breaking three tackles on route to scoring a game-tying try as time ran out. Fellow fifth-year and co-captain Roberta Drummond (Belleville, Ont.) would take care of the rest, notching her 18th and final conversion of the season to give the Ravens their first bronze medal in program history.RUGBY SEASON RECAP
Despite a week 1 loss at home to the Queen’s Gaels, Ravens football looked to be off to a strong start as they exploded out of the gate in week 2 at York. However, by the time the game was done, the Ravens had lost two quarterbacks as the injury bug took a major bite out of the team’s plans.
Left with two rookie quarterbacks the Ravens fought valiantly in front of 15,000 at the annual Panda Game, falling to the Gee-Gees on a last-minute field goal. Despite the loss, the Ravens were left with something to celebrate as Nathan Carter (Ottawa, Ont.) became the program’s all-time leading rusher. Less than a week later, the Ravens would receive a last-minute field goal of their own from rookie kicker Brandon Forcier securing their second win of the season. Injuries would continue to plague the Ravens who would limp into the playoffs at 2-4. With strong play from All-Rookie Nathan Clarke, rookie brothers Kasem and Danny Ferdinand, and a breakout season from Keaton Bruggeling, the Ravens battled uphill throughout the season earning their third consecutive playoff appearance.
The 2021 season was a changing of the guard for the Ravens women’s soccer team, led by graduating veterans Sophie Ehlebratch and Chloe Doherty the young Ravens were dealt a difficult schedule which saw them open with five straight games against the OUAs best. After a pair of early losses to Queen’s a young Ravens squad showed great promise, growing throughout the season at times playing with formations nearly completely full of rookies.
With strong goaltending from the tandem of Ehlebratch and Sophie Lachance-Soulard, the Ravens weren’t afraid to play an entertaining style of soccer despite a young team. While it was the veteran Doherty who finished in the top 10 in goals scored in the OUA, Ravens rookie Lauren Illman impressed in the final weekend of the season, scoring three of her five goals on the year over the team’s final weekend.SEASON RECAP
In a year filled with viral goals, changing formations and breakout stars, the Carleton Ravens 2021 men’s soccer season is one that won’t soon be forgotten. Opening the season as the U SPORTS National Championship hosts the Ravens sought to qualify for the tournament through the front door. After suffering their first loss of the season to the York Lions the Ravens season took off like a rocket when Matteo de Brienne and Emad Houache connected on a gorgeous volley that won’t soon be forgotten.
As the Ravens geared up for the championship they looked poised to challenge in the OUA before running into the eventual OUA Champions from Guelph. After the semi-final loss, the Ravens regrouped for a historic run through the U SPORTS National Championship at the Ravens’ Perch. Playing three extra-time games in four days, the Ravens upset a pair of conference champions from UBC and Cape Breton before taking the RSEQ powerhouse from the Université de Montréal to penalty kicks.MEN’S SOCCER RECAP
In a shortened OUA season, the Ravens golf team looked primed to make the most of their limited time on the course. In the OUA East Regional the Ravens finished third overall led by a second overall performance from Kyle Warton (74, 71). A week later, at a rain-soaked Cherry Hill, the Ravens would finish eighth overall at the OUA Championship. At the championship, the Ravens would receive their top performance from Daniel Ryan shooting a one-day 73, for a ninth overall finish.GOLF RECAP
In a shortened OUA season, the men’s water polo team wasted no time returning to their perennial spot near the top of the OUA. After narrowly getting by a strong uOttawa team in game one of the OUA regionals the Ravens quickly dispatched the Queen’s Gaels to advance to the OUA Championship.
In the OUA Championship at the Carleton Pool, the Ravens fought admirably against the powerhouse University of Toronto Varsity Blues, including a five-goal MVP performance by David Lapins to claim the OUA silver medal.CHAMPIONSHIP RECAP
In late October, the Carleton Ravens rowing team claimed three medals at the 2021 OUA Championship in Welland, Ontario. Led by an impressive solo performance by Brendan Edge (Arnprior, Ont.) who claimed bronze in the men’s lightweight men’s single the young Ravens team proved to be scrappy competitors throughout the day.
The men’s lightweight pair and heavyweight four would also earn bronze medals for the Ravens.ROWING RECAP
The Carleton Ravens men’s basketball team started the 2021 season by picking up right where they left off. The defending U SPORTS champions opened their season with impressive home stands against Nipissing and Ontario Tech before taking two games on the road at York to wrap up 2021 a perfect 6-0. The undefeated Ravens currently hold down the #1 ranking in the U SPORTS Top 10 and will reopen their season in 2022 with a Bytown Battle at the University of Ottawa’s Montpetit Hall.
Led offensively by two-time CEBL U SPORTS Player of the Year Lloyd Pandi the Ravens have received scoring by committee with five players averaging over ten points a night. The Ravens will be busy in 2022, closing out their schedule on February 18 at the annual Capital Hoops Classic.
After starting the season 4-0 at home, the Ravens season was up-ended in their first road game of the season with a loss at York. Despite the loss, the Ravens charged back the next day with their first 100-point output since 2018. The team enters the break 5-1 while also being ranked #8 in the U SPORTS Top 10.
Madison Reid, Kali Pocrnic and Emma Kiesekamp have been the lead for a Ravens team that has five players averaging over 9.0 points per game to start the year. Kiesekamp’s nine steals lead the Ravens transition offense, while Oceane Kounkou has established herself as a dangerous shooting threat with 8 three-pointers in twenty-one attempts for 38.1% from downtown.
The OUAs second-highest scoring team, the Ravens men’s hockey team has had no shortage of offense to star the 2021-22 season. Veteran forward Aaron Boyd is second in OUA scoring with 7 goals while rookie Oliver Castleman is hot on his heels with 12 points of his own – 4 goals and 8 assists. Boyd’s early-season goal-scoring streak reached five games before being shutout by the Gee-Gees in his sixth game of the season.
The Ravens returned to the ice in 2021 with 17 rookies on their roster and immediately announced their arrival to the power-packed RSEQ. With opening weekend wins over Bishop’s and the uOttawa Gee-Gees the Ravens started their season with their best opening record in a decade. Despite an up-and-down October, the Ravens were able to end 2021 with some momentum winning the Carleton Ravens’ annual Teddy Bear Toss Game with a 1-0 shutout of Bishop’s.
The Ravens sit only 4 points back of fourth in the RSEQ.
With the return of the Eastern Canada Cup at the FIS Eastern Canada Cup this past weekend, Bronwyn and her Ravens teammates were able to take to the trails and the podium at the Nakkertok Nordic Centre in Gatineau.
A regular part of the local ski scene, the Candy Cane Cup annual offers the Ravens nordic skiing team an early opportunity to test their fitness heading into the holiday season. It was a strong all-around showing for the Ravens, led by Williams who placed third in the CCUNC women’s 10km Classic and second in the 1.3km Sprint. Despite wet and raining conditions, Bronwyn and her Ravens teammates showed well at the competition which included a number of top 20 performances.CANDY CANE CUP RECAP