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ALBERTA WINS 15 MEDALS ON THURSDAY AT CANADA SUMMER GAMES
Swimming, Wrestling, Cycling, and Canoe-Kayak all contribute to Alberta’s medal tally
(Winnipeg, MB) It was a day full of activities with all sports in action today at the 2017 Canada Summer Games. Alberta excelled once again, earning 15 medals and qualifying both volleyball teams, softball, soccer and three tennis teams to semi-finals.
Swimming once again had a deluge of medals earned at the pool. Alberta captured 11 of those coveted medals, including four gold medals. Cole Pratt now has eight medals, one shy away from tying the Canada Games record.
Wrestling ended their team event with the women’s taking the silver medal, losing a gritty fight against the very strong BC women, while the men battled it out to earn the fifth place of the team event.
On the water of the Red River, paddlers added two medals, including a third medal of these Games for Calgary’s Brady Garcia.
Out at Birds Hill Provincial Park, Alberta cyclist Connor Toppings of Calgary scored another surprise for Team Alberta by sprinting to the silver medal in the men’s road race.
Alberta’s medal tally is now at 69 (18-25-26) still sitting in fourth place in the standings. Ontario dominates the medal standings with 163 medals. Quebec and British Columbia continues to battle it out for second place.
GOLD, SILVER MEDALS FOR ALBERTA AS CANOE-KAYAK RACING RESUMES
The Manitoba Canoe & Kayak Centre was buzzing once more today after a day of rest yesterday, and Alberta secured two medals in the canoe events.
Paddler Brady Garcia of Calgary continued his medal streak at the 2017 Canada Games, winning his third and fourth medal of the games, including two gold medals. Today’s gold medal came in the fast-paced C1 200m race, where he completed the distance in a blazing 39.42 seconds.
Garcia has earned five medals at these 2017 Canada Summer Games: two gold, two silver and one bronze medals.
In the men’s IC4 200m sprint race, the Alberta crew of Brady Garcia, Gavin Jaeger-Freeborn, Mateh Kowaluk and Robin Kendall won the silver medal. The team posted a time of 37.616 seconds, 0.3 seconds out of the gold medal position.
Tomorrow will be the last day of competition for the paddlers.
ALBERTA SWIMMERS CONTINUE TO STORM THE POOL
The Pan-Am Pool was once filled with energy for a third straight day, with Alberta winning 11 medals on the third of four days of competition.
Avery Wiseman continued to dominate her field setting once again a new Canada Games record in the women’s 100m Breaststroke, posting a time of 1:11.47. In the final race, Wiseman lowered that record with a time of 1:10.60 for the gold medal. Pilar McCann won the bronze medal in that same race, with Alberta packing the 1-2 punch. Avery was also a key member of the 4X50m Medlay Relay race that took the gold medal.
Emma O’Croinin of Edmonton once again showcased her magic in the pool, earning her fourth medal of these Games with a bronze medal in the women’s 200m freestyle. To date, O’Croinin has two gold, one silver and one bronze medals hanging around her neck.
Calgary’s Cole Pratt, who participated in four different medal races, delivered once again tonight in the pool winning medals in all his races.
In his opening race, the men’s 200m freestyle, he took the gold medal lowered the National Age Group record. Moments later, he raced the men’s 200m backstroke and squeezed in a bronze medal. In his third of four races of the evening, the men’s 100m butterfly race, Pratt came back from behind in the second half of the race from fourth to the first position. He won the race by 0.02 seconds over the silver medallist. In the men’s 4x50m Medley Relay, Pratt and his teammates won the bronze medal.
History could be made in the pool tomorrow, with Cole Pratt having a chance at becoming the most decorated athlete in a single edition of the Canada Summer Games 50-year history. He currently has eight medals and could win an additional two tomorrow, surpassing the Calgary swimmer Ray Betuzzi, who won nine medals at the 2005 Canada Summer Games in Regina, Saskatchewan.
Okotoks’ Finlay Knox captured the silver medal in the Men’s 100m Breaststroke, his third medal of the Games.
Hidde Geurts of Red Deer County won the silver medal in para-swimming men’s 100m breaststroke S4-S14. In the Special Olympics men’s 50m backstroke, Wesley Wilks earned the bronze medal with a time of 37.31, his second of these Canada Games.
In the women’s relay, Alberta ladies captured the gold medal in a tightly contested race. Alexandra Butler raced the first leg of the 4-lap race. She exchanged with Avery Wiseman, who stormed out of the gate to bring Alberta in the top spot with 100m to go. Maria Olarescu was able to maintain the pole position for Alberta, exchanging with Kyla Nelson who was able to withstand the pressure by Ontario. Alberta touched the wall first with a time of 1:58.48
In the men’s 4x50m relay, Alberta earned the bronze medal with a time of 1:47.42. Cole Pratt started the race with vigor touching the opposing wall first with a slight lead. Finley Knox took the exchange and swam his leg maintaining the Alberta lead. Sterlyng Blair was third to go for Alberta, and he fended off the attacks coming from Ontario and British Columbia. In the final leg of the race, Stephen Hou couldn’t resist the power from the Ontario, and British Columbian teams and Alberta ended up taking the third place.
Alberta ends this night at the pool with 11 swimming medals: four gold, two silver, and five bronze medals.
Swimming resumes tomorrow with a final day of competition.
CONNOR TOPPINGS TAKES HUGE SILVER IN MEN’S CYCLING ROAD RACE
With the Alberta Lucky Loonie pinned at the start/finish line of the road race circuit, Alberta earned its second medal of the road race events at the Birds Hill Provincial Park. After Anna Talman had won the bronze medal in the women’s road race yesterday, it was Connor Toppings’ time to shine, and he delivered with a silver medal performance.
Toppings crossed the finish line after 125.1 kilometers of racing with a time of 2:48.10. Pier-André Côté of Quebec won the race with a timely attack, followed by Toppings showing a 3-second gap. Jay Lamoureux was third to finish the race, 10 seconds after Toppings.
A breakaway group formed early in the race and managed to increase the gap laps after laps. With strong representation from each of the stronger provinces, the breakaway managed to stay intact through the finish line.
Toppings initiated the sprint with 400m to go. Sprinter Pier André Côté answered Toppings’ move and took him to the line for the victory.
The surprising Alberta cycling team racing at the Canada Games is coached by local superstar Tanya Dubnicoff, who won four gold medals herself while competing for Canada at the 1999 Pan-Am Games that took place in Winnipeg. Dubnicoff also coached the Olympic-bronze medal winning track cycling team at the 2012 Olympic Games with the Canadian National Cycling Team.
Cycling resumes Saturday evening with the fan-favorite criterium race at the Red River Exhibition Park.
FEMALE WRESTLERS EARN SILVER IN TEAM EVENT; MEN TAKE FIFTH PLACE
The Alberta women’s wrestling team earned the silver medal in the team event, thanks to an undefeated round robin play (5-0) that qualified them for the gold medal.
On their way to the gold medal game, Alberta remained undefeated in five matches by winning the duals against Saskatchewan (47-5), Nova-Scotia (48-6), Manitoba (46-4), Newfoundland (48-5), and Nunavut (55-0).
The gold medal match featured the only two undefeated teams in the tournament in British Columbia and Alberta. In a hotly contested matchup between the two western provinces, British Columbia proved to be stronger on the day, winning the battle 32-18 for the gold medal.
The wrestlers competing for Team Alberta are Kenza Messaoudini (40kg); Maya Johnston (44 kg), Xana Beran (48kg), Tiana Bryant (52kg), Tawes Messaoudini (56kg), Sofia Santoro (60kg), Kinley Link (64kg), Megan Fendelet (69kg), Praise Abidemi-Aremu (74kg), Halima Fanta (79kg), and Cassie Fisher (84 kg)
In the men’s team event, Alberta ended round robin with a record of 2-2, dropping their dual against Ontario and Quebec. They defeated Manitoba and Nova Scotia in the process. In the placement game, Alberta defeated New Brunswick 37-13 to take the fifth place.
Friday will be a busy day for Alberta wrestlers, with all 22 athletes competing in their individual weight classes tournament. A total of 66 medals (22 gold) will be awarded on this day.
WOMEN’S SOFTBALL EARNS BERTH TO MEDAL ROUND
At the John Blumberg Softball Complex, Alberta squared off against the team from British Columbia and the host from Manitoba in round robin play.
Facing the undefeated British Columbia, Alberta lost a tightly contested battle 10-8 filled with strong offense from both teams.
After a short break, the Alberta ladies were back in action against the team from Manitoba. It took all the way to the seventh and final inning for Alberta’s offense to show its strength. Trailing 3-2 to the loud host team, Alberta was forced again to put on the rally caps. Against the wall and facing a second loss in a day, Alberta came back roaring and scored six runs to escape a narrow defeat. Final score of the game is 8-5
With a 6-2 record, the Alberta ladies have one remaining match before the medal round, a dual against Newfoundland and Labrador. They are now guaranteed to play for a medal having qualified for the semi-finals.
VOLLEYBALL TEAMS ON FIRE, BOTH SET FOR SEMI-FINALS
The women’s volleyball team won their last match of the round robin to remain undefeated. Facing Ontario, the ladies came out looking strong and won in four sets, bouncing back from an opening set loss to win three straight sets. (20-25, 25-21, 25-18, 25-19).
Thanks to the important win against Ontario, the ladies will advance straight to the semi-finals and avoid a quarterfinal match. In semi-final action, Alberta will face New Brunswick tomorrow. Alberta faced New Brunswick in the round robin, a match they won in four sets (3-1).
In the men’s quarterfinal, Alberta faced off against the squad from Saskatchewan. Alberta won in three straight sets (25-20, 25-16, 25-9) and will advance to the semifinals to play against Quebec at 5:30pm.
MEN’S SOCCER TEAM ADVANCE TO SEMI-FINALS IN KICKS FROM THE PENALTY MARK
After a 1-1 record in pool action, the Alberta men’s soccer team faced British Columbia in the men’s soccer quarterfinal at the Ralph Cantafino Soccer Complex.
Scoreless after 80 minutes of play in regulation time, it took kicks from the penalty mark to decide the winner of this intense quarterfinals. Three Alberta players scored goals in the kicks from the penalty marks, with Stefan Gagic, Sam Gagne, and Vaughan Bianchi moving the nets. Alberta’s goalkeeper Brennan Hebert made two saves in the kicks, while BC missed the net on one occasion.
Alberta will play the host province in Manitoba in semifinal action, tomorrow evening.
In women’s soccer news, three players from the women’s team that competed at the 2017 Canada Games have been invited to participate in the EXCEL camp in preparation for the 2018 CONCACAF Women’s U20 championships. Those players are Tanya Boychuk, Anna Dunn, and Caleigh Boeckx.
ETHAN CHOI WITHIN STRIKING DISTANCE OF A MEDAL IN GOLF
The golfers took back to the links at the Southwood Community Golf and Country club on the outskirts of Winnipeg.
Coming in the third round, Alberta golfers were in a solid position thanks to a great second round. Ethan Choi shot a round of 72 for a cumulative score of 216 strokes. In sixth place, he trails the current leader by only six strokes heading into the final round. Kai Iguchi, who was sixth entering the round, dropped to the 12th place with a round of 79. He is now 16 strokes behind the leader.
Taylor Stones remains Alberta’s top player in the sixth position. She shot another good round of 72 today, her best of the three rounds played. She has a cumulative score of 225 while the current leader has a cumulative score of 213.
TENNIS OFF TO A STRONG START; BIG DAY EXPECTED TOMORROW
In the Team event semi-final, Alberta faced off against Ontario after a rest day due to rain.
Ontario started out strong by winning the first two matches in the men’s and women singles. The next two matches turned into Alberta’s favor with two straight wins to even the dual at two.
After a well-deserved break, Alberta needed to win the following two matches to advance to the gold medal match. Ultimately, Ontario stole the last two matches of the day and advanced to the gold medal matches.
Alberta will face Quebec for the bronze medal tomorrow morning.
In Women’s Singles action, Ashleigh Jacobs of Calgary faced off against Sophia Qi Ho of British Columbia in quarterfinal action. It took only two sets for Jacobs to defeat her opponent, with Jacobs winning her sets 6-3, 6-3. Jacobs will face 12-year-old Manitoba’s, Reece Carter, in semi-finals.
Calgary’s Cleeve Harper of took on the second-seed Nicaise Muamba of Quebec in the men’s single round. Muamba took the first set 6-3, and Harper bounced back to take the next set 6-2. In the ultimate set, Muamba played his way to the 6-2 set win to take the 2-1 victory and to advance to the next round. Harper has been eliminated from the men’s singles competition.
Competing for Alberta in the women’s double tournament, Karin Hamilton and Emma Rutherford of Calgary took on Nova Scotia in the opening quarterfinals action. The Calgary duo dropped their first set but bounced back by winning the second and third set to advance to the semi-finals where they will be paired up against Ontario.
Tyler Sinclair and Shourya Verma, also of Calgary, represent Alberta in the men’s double competition. Facing the team from Saskatchewan, the pair dropped their opening set 6-4 and battled through adversity to win the second set 7-5. In the ultimate set, Alberta took the win thanks to a 6-2 set. Alberta advances to the semi-finals in the men’s double, facing Quebec.
Alberta will play in semi-finals in the ladies singles, ladies doubles and men doubles tomorrow.
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