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DIVER ASHLEY McCOOL EARNS COMPLETE CANADA GAMES MEDAL SET WITH BRONZE MEDAL
Men’s Basketball moves on to Gold Medal Match; Women’s Soccer and Basketball teams to fight for bronze
(Winnipeg, MB) Team Alberta added a bronze medal to its tally on a quiet day at the 2017 Canada Summer Games in Winnipeg, a medal-winning performance courtesy yet again of diver Ashley McCool of Cochrane, AB.
McCool earned the bronze medal in the 1m springboard event at the Pan Am Pool. McCool, a former gymnast has enjoyed a stellar Canada Games earning a complete set of medals for Team Alberta – gold, silver, and bronze.
“I’m pretty excited. I didn’t really expect anything prior to this competition, where everybody has its ups and downs”, said McCool.
McCool is a third-generation participant of the Canada Games. Her father Brent (Baseball, 1981 Thunder Bay) and grandfather Jim (Softball, 1969 Halifax/Dartmouth) also once participated at the Canada Games. “I’m super happy to continue our tradition within the family. I wasn’t aware of that I was the third generation until a few weeks ago.”
The 17-year-old is competing as a diver in her second Canada Games. She dove for Alberta at the 2013 Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke, QC, where fifth in the 3m synchronized diving event was her best result. “There are a lot of distractions at major games like these ones. There are lots more fans that come out, which isn’t the case at other competitions. That adds lots of pressure. I just have to take away that pressure and focus on my diving.”
Added McCool on her mentorship role within the team coming with Canada Games experience: “Although I am the oldest of my teammates, I learn a lot from them. I love them all so much; they are a fun group of girls. I don’t really have to mentor them as they are so grown up!”
McCool’s diving career will now take her to the NCAA, where she will represent Arizona State on a full scholarship in the fall. Prior to her trip down south, she will represent Canada at the FISU Championships in Taiwan and the Pan-American Junior Championships in Victoria in the next months.
Marti Erlam (Calgary, AB) also qualified for the final, a day after being pulled out of the Finals because Alberta qualified four athletes. She bounced back today, earning her career best performance with a well deserved fourth place, trailing McCool by only two points. Brooklyn Whyte (Edmonton, AB) finished in 15th place in the preliminary round and did not advance to the final round.
White and Margo Erlam (Calgary, AB) will compete in tomorrow’s 10m competition tomorrow.
The three men divers took to the springboard competing in the 3m event. Carlo Lopez (Edmonton, AB) was the lone Alberta diver to qualify for the final dive with a fifth place in preliminary action. In the finals, he placed 12th. Yohan Eskrick-Parkinson (Calgary, AB) finished 14th followed by Tazman Abramowicz (Calgary, AB) finished in 15th position.
Lopez will compete in the 10m event tomorrow.
On the soccer pitch, the Alberta women played a hard fought battle in the semi-final match against the powerful team from Ontario at the Ralph Cantafino Soccer Complex, and the members of Team Alberta ended their quest for gold, losing 1-0.
In the very physical match between the two rivals, Ontario showed the speed at the front of the field and managed to squeeze a goal in the first half, thanks to a beautiful cross to an open attacker.
Alberta will now face Nova Scotia with the bronze medal on the line tomorrow at 4pm.
The women’s basketball team faced off against the very powerful Quebec squad in their semi-final match at the Duckworth Center. In front of a boisterous crowd, Alberta played with emotion and passion. At half-time, Alberta trailed Quebec 42-31. Ultimately the lead proved too much for the Alberta girls, losing their duel 83-51.
The basketball ladies will play for bronze on Friday at noon against Manitoba. At the last Canada Games in 2013, Alberta finished in fourth.
Later in the evening, the men of Alberta took to center court at the brand-new Canada Games Sport For Life Sports Complex. Facing British Columbia, the team rallied with energy and passion and won the contest 71-56.
The game remained very tight in the first two quarters with Alberta leading 17-14 in the first quarter and 35-33 at halftime. The third quarter proved to be a determining factor in the game, as Alberta came back from the dressing room and took offensive control of the match. Alberta scored 17 points, allowing only 9 in the third quarter and maintained the offense to close out the game.
Brandon Meiklejohn (Edmonton, AB) led the team with a whopping 24 points. Fisayo Moibi (Edmonton, AB) netted 15 points, while John Evans (Lethbridge, AB) added 14 points to Alberta’s tally.
The Alberta’s men basketball program has improved significantly in the last four years since Sherbrooke 2017, where they finished the tournament in tenth place, second last. On Friday, they’ll be battling it out for the gold medal against Ontario. The match will be televised on TSN starting at 7:30pm at the Duckworth Center.
The men’s softball team played their final round robin game against New Brunswick, taking a 7-6 loss. With a 2-7 record, the team led by Todd McCabe will now enter the placement round starting tomorrow and will face British Columbia.
Athletics, cycling, sailing, triathlon, beach volleyball and rowing enjoyed a day off today and will resume tomorrow. Both beach volleyball teams are back on the sand courts for their respective semi-finals against British Columbia. The top-seeded baseball team will face a boisterous crowd against Manitoba at Shaw Park in the semi-finals, while the women’s soccer team will go for the bronze medal against Nova Scotia.
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