NEWS & EVENTS | March 30, 2022

An historic year: Les Rouges win three championships

USB Women's soccer team, 2021 MCAC champions.

USB's Women's soccer team, 2021 MCAC champions.

The Les Rouges women’s teams spectacularly made history in 2021–2022 by bringing home Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference (MCAC) provincial championship titles in soccer, volleyball and futsal.

In October 2021, the soccer team set the tone by winning the provincial championship in Brandon. While Mylène Chabot won the award for Most Valuable Player (MVP) for her team, captain Katie Moniot was named Most Valuable Player of the Year for the second year in a row. “I can’t imagine my studies and my life without sports,” she explained, “and one of my responsibilities is to inspire other girls to find joy in exercise.” The team then travelled to Toronto to play in the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association’s (CCAA) national championship. It was the first time a Manitoba team had played in these nationals!

On March 6, again in Brandon but this time in volleyball, Les Rouges triumphed in the provincials with an amazing game (sets of 25 to 17, 25 to 23, 23 to 25, 23 to 25 and 15 to 7). The championship’s MVP, Samuelle Lemoine, exclaimed: “What a crazy game! We have gone to the fifth a lot this season, so we knew we could do it.” This is the fourth time in Les Rouges history that the team has brought home the provincial title (2001, 2002, 2003, 2022), but the first time in nearly 20 years. Les Rouges went on to represent Manitoba in the CCAA National Championship in Prince Edward Island from March 23 to 27.

On March 13, in the Université de Saint-Boniface East Gym, Les Rouges–with a resounding win in the final–took home the provincial futsal championship for a third straight year! Goalkeeper Daneige Edey, named Championship MVP, said: “After a two-year pandemic and games with no one in the stands, it was amazing to win at home, at USB, with a cheering crowd!” With this win, Les Rouges went undefeated this season (4-0-0 in the regular season and 2-0 in playoffs).

Meanwhile, the basketball team, which was just formed this year, built a solid foundation for the coming years.

Justin Légaré (women’s soccer) and Evan Turenne (women’s volleyball) were both named MCAC Coach of the Year.

Four teams overflowing with enthusiasm

Eric Lemoine is thrilled about these three championship wins. Things have come a long way since he took over as Assistant Director of the Athletics and Recreational Activities five years ago. At the time, Les Rouges only had a women’s volleyball team. And it was short on players!

Meanwhile there were men’s teams in four sports. “It was simply unacceptable to me,” he recalls. “Girls need to move and push themselves just as much as the guys do.” So he committed to encouraging young women to train. Over the years, teams were added, and as of this year, all the women’s teams–volleyball, futsal, soccer and basketball–are full.

“It’s really not difficult to recruit female athletes,” he said. “Quite the opposite—the teams are packed. We have to find ways for everyone to be involved, even the women who aren’t officially part of the team.”

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