In the meantime, the SDSSAA hockey talent are fighting tooth and nail, looking to advance to the all-Ontario championships of their own.
With the March break looming, secondary school athletes are showing few signs of slowing down.
Fresh off emotional victories at both the city finals and NOSSA, the St. Charles College Cardinals extended their stretch of red-hot play, winning all three of their matches in Windsor.
The Cards dropped Regiopolos Notre-Dame of Kingston (25-16, 25-18), the Waterdown Warriors (20-25, 28-26, 15-13) and Father Redmond Redhawks of Toronto (25-19, 25-23), taking top spot in their pool at the OFSAA AAA tournament.
St. Charles will do battle with the Iona Dolphins of Mississauga in quarter-final action, with the winner assuring themselves a berth in a medal game.
The Lockerby Vikings duplicated the Cardinals 3-0 Day 1 record, though they have one more match to play to complete the round-robin portion of their event.
Seeded ninth, Lockerby defeated the Holy Trinity Titans from Oakville (25-21, 19-25, 16-14), the St Michael Mustangs of Kemptville (25-20, 25-12) and Collège Catholique Samuel-Genest of Ottawa (24-26, 25-20, 15-12).
Lockerby was prepared to close out preliminary play battling Archbishop Romero Catholic Secondary School of Toronto this morning.
The Vikes could well be joined in quarter-final play by the Lo-Ellen Park Knights, winners of two of their three games on March 4.
The Knights upended the Timmins (TH&VS) Blues 25-15, 25-15 and the Norwell Redmen (Palmerston) 25-23, 25-15, before dropping a close match with the fourth-seeded General Amherst Bulldogs of Amherstburg, 20-25, 22-25.
Lo-Ellen can assure their championship-round playoff berth with a victory today against L'Escale of Ottawa, the latter posting a 1-2 record in their three games on March 4.
Finally, in Lakefield, just outside of Peterborough, the Marymount Regals are in tough at the OFSAA A playdowns. The locals lost to the host Lakefield District Secondary School (14-25, 18-25) and to Greenwood College of Toronto (23-25, 16-25) and will almost certainly be competing in the consolation round.
On the ice, the city champion St. Charles College Cardinals appear to be the best bet for a local flagbearer at OFSAA, picking up a pair of wins in NOSSA boys hockey action in Sault Ste Marie.
The Cards kicked off the northern Ontario AAA/AAAA event with a 4-1 win over the Korah Colts of Sault Ste. Marie as Blake Purcell, Tyler Scagnetti, Ryan Liinimaa and Zach Webkamigad scored once each for the winners.
The Cardinals maintained their shutdown pressure through Game 2 as Purcell and Liinimaa both touched the twine in a 2-0 whitewash of the Algonquin Barons, with Nick McGregor recording the shutout.
In NOSSA boys action locally, the Manitoulin Mustangs and Macdonald-Cartier Panthères both dropped their opening games before going head to head in a dandy March 3 matchup at the Gerry McCrory Countryside Sports Complex.
SDSSAA league MVP Dustin Varey snapped a 1-1 tie, netting the game-winning goal as Manitoulin edged ESMC 2-1. Justin Lanktree (Manitoulin) and Nicholas Roberge (Macdonald-Cartier) traded power-play goals earlier in the game, with the Mustangs needing a win over the undefeated St. Mary's Knights today to have any chance of advancing to the finals.
The Sault Ste. Marie representatives outscored both Macdonald-Cartier (4-1) and the West Ferris Trojans of North Bay (3-0), with the latter earning a split thanks to a 5-2 win over Manitoulin earlier in the day.