Sydney University named 2018 Nationals East Region Overall Champions

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The University of Sydney have been crowned East Region Overall Champions of the UniSport Australia Div 1 Nationals for 2018.

This result means the University of Sydney finished highest on the overall pennant tally out of all Universities in UniSport Australia’s East Region of Australia. 

Narrowly missing out on the title of Overall Champions, the Students were a single pennant off taking out the entire thing and knocking Queensland off.

The result was decided only yesterday with four-time champions, Sydney University contesting a pennant at the T20 Cricket in Western Sydney, losing their semi final to Macquarie University.

A win here would have seen the Students match Queensland in gold but come out on top based on silver and bronze medals won. 

Regardless, the University of Sydney will look back on its first ever UniSport Australia Div 1 Nationals campaign with pride after winning an enormous eight pennants to Queensland’s nine, six silver and eight bronze medals.

The event replaced the former Australian University Games to lift the level of competition and that it did.

It hosted 43 universities from across Australia who competed in 33 sporting competitions, all in the hope of obtaining as many pennants (overall first-place finishes) as possible. This year, the University of Sydney sent 410 student-athletes to the Gold Coast to form 40 teams (male, female and mixed) and compete across 26 sports.

Pennants were won by Men’s Baseball, Women’s Ultimate Frisbee, Kendo’s Men and Women, Women’s Soccer-Football, Women’s Cycling and both Men and Women in Rowing. Sydney University rowers entered 15 of the 16 events held, winning a total of seven gold, three silver and three bronze medals to claim the Men’s, Women’s and Overall Championship.

The team placed first in the Men’s eight to retain the Oxford and Cambridge Cup, the Mixed Eight, Men’s and Women’s Coxed Pair, Women’s Lightweight Quad and Men’s Lightweight Single. Silver was won by the Women’s Eight, Men’s Double and Mixed Coxed Four.

Like rowing, Kendo claimed the Women’s, Men’s and Overall Champion title off the back of a dominant two-day campaign, winning a string of individual medals in the process.

Men’s Baseball had a flawless run to beat Griffith University in the final, 11-1, while Women’s Football dominated in their competition with a succession of 10+ point wins, beating Melbourne University in the gold medal match, 3-1, to earn their 8th consecutive pennant. Women’s Cycling and Women’s Ultimate Frisbee also added pennants.

On top of this, a number of teams produced standout performances to take individual gold, second and third-place medals. Gold-medal winners included Kane Townsend in the Men’s Singles in Table Tennis and Cormac Guthrie in the Men’s 800m Freestyle. In Fencing, the Men’s Foil Team won gold and in the 27km Individual Women’s Time Trial, Georgia Whitehouse won gold with a convincing one-minute lead.

Teams that finished with silver (6) were Aussie Rules, Men’s Volleyball, Women’s Hockey, Men’s Rugby 7s, Men’s Ultimate Frisbee and Women’s Judo. Individual second-place finishes included Sarah Tan in the Women’s Singles for Table Tennis.

Bronze-medal winners (8) included Mixed Touch Football, Men’s Water Polo, Women’s Futsal, Women’s Table Tennis, Women’s Badminton, Men’s Tennis and Men’s Fencing (who placed equal third.)

Women’s Taekwondo also took bronze overall, with the team pulling together an impressive eight gold, seven silver and 10 bronze medal-performances. Individual bronzes included the women’s and men’s relay teams who finished third in the 4x50m Freestyle.

“We had a clear purpose for the event which was to be as competitive as possible,” SUSF High Performance Manager, Tristan Liles said.

“As we travelled to each sport, the most common question asked by team managers was ‘how are the other teams doing? Are we winning?’ This sense of unity was tremendous to see and shows that the culture we are trying to cultivate is already there.”

“We will continue to refine and improve, and without a doubt be back stronger and more prepared in 2019.” Congratulations to all student athletes who took part – it was a terrific week of competition where teams and athletes alike performed with distinction.


Also in conjunction with UniSport Australia, the 2018 Aon University Sevens Series saw the University of Sydney enter a team for its first year and finish an impressive fourth overall.

The finish was behind victors, Griffith University, 2017 champions, the University of Queensland and Macquarie University. The five-round, 10-team competition was held over two months on university fields across the country, with the Students notching two fourth, a second, third and ninth place finish.

A special mention to Jakiya ‘Winx’ Whitfeld who was named Player of the Series and featured in the series Dream Team. Congratulations to the entire squad, coaching and support staff on an exceptional campaign.