Despite Brock being a relatively small school, the sports scene here is definitely notable. In terms of varsity sports, the athletic calendar —much like the academic one — is split between fall and winter seasons.
Notable fall sports include baseball, soccer, rugby and lacrosse. Baseball games are played at George Taylor Field, which is roughly a 15 minute bus ride from campus. The other three are all played on-campus at Alumni Field, right behind the Walker Complex. Baseball, men’s lacrosse, and women’s rugby are all likely candidates to make the playoffs this year, while both soccer teams look to bounce back from sub-.500 seasons last year.
The winter sports season is much longer than the fall one, mainly due to Canadian winter starting in November. The ‘big three’ sports consist of volleyball, hockey and basketball, with the latter two bringing out the most fans. One of the biggest sporting events of the year features the men’s hockey team playing in the Steel Blade Classic, a pre-season game that’s held at the Meridian Centre (the downtown arena home to the Niagara IceDogs) that officially kicks off homecoming weekend in September (stay posted for details regarding tickets on Twitter: @brockbadgers).
The second big event sees both the men’s and women’s basketball teams play a doubleheader at the Meridian Centre sometime in November. Like the Steel Blade Classic, the energy in the arena is always incredible. You can expect both hockey teams to compete this upcoming year, while this season marks a new era for the men’s basketball program, as they will be without the likes of their two leading scorers from a season ago (Johneil Simpson and Cassidy Ryan), both of whom graduated in the spring. Additionally, they will be led by rookie head coach Willy Manigat, who was announced as the ninth head coach in Badgers history last month. The women’s basketball team saw a great turnaround last year, with head coach Mike Rao shedding the interim title and becoming the permanent head coach. They will look to build off last season in which they won their first playoff game in six years.
With all that being said, the sport that Brock has had the most success in is wrestling. The program has won 28 national championships between the men’s and women’s teams over the past 25 years, a dynasty that doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon.
The intramural program at Brock is a great way to play your favourite sports, meet new people and even make some money by officiating —assuming you’re okay with getting paid to be yelled at (sometimes). There are also varying levels of competition offered, from ultra-competitive leagues to relaxed, just-for-fun, I’m-not-playing-defense leagues. Sign-ups will be posted all around campus and you are free to register for as many sports as you want. There are also a number of fitness programs and classes offered, from personal training sessions to swim classes, as well as an on-campus sports clinic that offers physiotherapy and rehab — should you get injured.
One handy tool that you can use is the Brock Sports app, which tells you what gyms are open/closed, if there are drop-in sports happening, what varsity teams are playing that day and so forth. Between varsity sports, intramurals and everyday recreation, there is more than enough on-campus athletic activity to fill your needs. So put on your best David Puddy painted-face, and come on out and support the team.
For more information regarding all things about sports and recreation at Brock, visit gobadgers.ca.