Canada winter


(ISN) – Team BC finished its final day of competition in the 2015 Canada Winter Games on Saturday by winning another 12 medals including, two gold, six silver, and four bronze, bringing the host province’s total medal count to 88.

Local snowboarders Evan Bichon, 16, and Meryeta O’Dine, 18, both of Prince George, dominated the snowboard cross competition at Tabor, bringing home gold medals in the men’s and women’s events. Katie Anderson (19, Jaffray) joined O’Dine on the podium, she earned a bronze in snowboard cross.

“This was the result I was hoping for, but not necessarily what I was expecting,” explained O’Dine. “I was extremely nervous at the beginning of the race. I was last going into the first berms, but there was a path on almost every berm so I started passing. It was literally one of the most exciting races I’ve ever been in.”

O’Dine credits the Canada Winter Games with inspiring her to excel in her sport.

“The Canada Games are what really got me into snowboarding,” she said. “When I was just starting I knew someone that was going to the Canada Games and I was like ‘wow – she’s going to the Canada Games – I want to do that.’ Even though I was only 14 and hadn’t even raced yet. I am really proud now to be here and to have my own win.”

The table tennis competition came to a close with Team BC earning five medals. Silver medals were won in the girls doubles event: Natasha Carr-Harris (16, Vancouver) and Ivy Liao (13, Vancouver), the boys doubles event: Frank Liao (15, Vancouver) and Mike Yue (17, New Westminster), the girls singles event: Ivy Liao, and the boys singles event: Michael Luo (16, Burnaby). Team BC also won a bronze in the mixed doubles event: Michael Luo and Leanne Lee (17, Burnaby).

Thirteen-year-old Ivy Liao won silver in both the doubles and singles events. She faced off against an opponent who was five years older than her in the singles final and was extremely proud of her silver result.

“My opponent was rated much higher than me in the competition and she has a lot of experience so I came into the match knowing that I needed to be the one controlling the speed of the match,” said Liao. “I think I did a good job. I looped a lot and was quite consistent with my shots, I didn’t miss many and I forced her to miss some blocks so I was very happy.”

Liao had never competed in a multisport event until this week. She said the atmosphere was a highlight.

“There’s not usually much support for table tennis but our stands were full of people cheering for us,” she said. “It was an honour to be a part of it.”

Cross country relay teams skied their way to women’s silver and men’s bronze. The women’s team included: Katie Weaver (17, North Vancouver), Molly Miller (13, Kimberley), Hannah Mehain (16, Vernon), and Eliza-Jane Kitchen (18, North Vancouver).

The men’s bronze medal team consisted of: Julien Locke (21, Nelson), Colin Ferrie (21, Kimberley), David Palmer (21, Rossland), and Geoffrey Richards (22, Rossland).

The men’s judo team earned a bronze in the team event with contributions from: Leo Goldberg (15, Langley), Greg Laslo (18, Abbotsford), Ario Nishimura (16, Richmond), Tavis Jamieson (18, Delta), Daniel Henry (18, Campbell River), Braxton Clarke (18, Nanaimo), and Jeff Swadden (18, Abbotsford).

In squash the women’s team won silver. They were represented by: Michele Garceau (18, Surrey), Grace Thomas (16, Victoria), Andrea Toth (14, Richmond) and Zoe Colclough (16, Vancouver).

In women’s curling, Team BC beat Alberta by a score of 9-8, finishing in fifth place.

Men’s hockey finished sixth overall with a 2-3 loss to Nova Scotia.