Canada gets in women’s basketball win column
Canada’s senior women’s national basketball team – led by Saskatchewan-based head coach Lisa Thomaidis – improved to 1-1 at the Tokyo Olympic Games after cruising past the Republic of Korea 74-53 on Day 6 of competition.
The red and white used a balanced attack with three players in double digit scoring and nine players on the scoreboard. Bridget Carleton led the Canadians in scoring with 18-points, seven rebounds, four assists and a block shot, while Nathalie Achonwa recorded a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds. She also added a team-high five assists.
“We certainly have a lot of respect for Korea, having played Spain so tightly a few days ago they had our attention,” said Thomaidis post-game in a Canada Basketball release. “They’re such a quick, dynamic team and [they] are a lot to defend [against].”
Canada never trailed in the game but Korea kept it tight through the first half with Canada leading by just five points at 33-28. In the fourth, Canada outscored Korea 25-14 to run away with the game. The Canadians also outrebounded Korea 54-32, including 22-9 on the offensive glass to outscored their opponents 15-6 in second chance opportunities.
Next up, Canada will take on Spain in group phase action on Day 8 at 7 p.m. (SK time), streaming live and free on CBC Gem.
Read more at basketball.ca
Wog competes in semifinal
Swimmer Kelsey Wog competed in the 200-metre breaststroke semifinal. The Regina-born athlete did not advance.
Full results, visit the official Olympics website.
Borgerson’s athlete competes in 25-metre air pistol qualifications
Rockglen coach Lisa Borgerson and Canada’s lone shooting athlete Lynda Kiejko competed in the 25-metre air pistol precision qualifications. Kiejko is 41st after an average scored of 9.367 in precision. Qualification continues on Day 7 with rapid qualifications.
For full results, visit the official Olympics website.
Olympic/Paralympic notes: Read the full Day 6 recap on Olympic.ca… Saskatoon’s Michael Linklater, a former world-ranked 3×3 basketball player and champion with the Saskatchewan Rattlers and University of Saskatchewan Huskies, made his debut as analyst for the sport at the Olympics on CBC… Caileigh Filmer and Hillary Janssens won Canada’s first medal of the Olympic rowing regatta with a bronze in women’s pair, the first medal in the event since Barcelona in 1992… Canada’s No. 1 ranked beach volleyball duo Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes finished atop their pool to advance to the Round of 16… Canada’s medal total is now at 10 (two gold, three silver, five bronze).
Thibeault advances to quarter-finals with split decision victory
Tammara Thibeault is heading to the quarter-finals after defeating Kazakhstan’s Nadezhda Ryabets by 4-1 split decision on Day 5 of the Olympics in Tokyo.
Thibeault, who is competing in the 75-kilogram middleweight division, used her reach to her advantage, keeping her opponent at a distance for the majority of the bout and hitting Ryabets with power punches when she did make it inside.
Next up, Thibeault will take on the Netherland’s Nouchka Fontijn on Day 7 at approximately 10:24 p.m. (SK time).
Read more at cbc.ca.
Olympic/Paralympic notes: Read the full Day 5 on Olympic.ca …21-year-old swimmer Penny Oleksiak became the most decorated Canadian Summer Olympian after winning her sixth medal— a bronze in the women’s 200-metre freestyle— and is now tied with Olympic speedskater Cindy Klassen and dual-Games athlete in speedskating and cycling Clara Hughes…Gymnast Ellie Black withdrew from the all-around competition due to injury…Canada’s medal total is now at nine (two gold, three silver, four bronze).
Canadian Paralympic Committee, July 27, 2021
Photo credit: Badminton Canada
Regina’s Frank Gaudet has been selected to accompany Canada’s first-ever Para badminton athlete, Olivea Meier at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
The sport is making its Paralympic debut at the Tokyo Summer Games and Meier will compete in the women’s SL4 singles tournament. She is currently ranked No. 11 in the world.
Badminton competition in Tokyo begins Sept. 1 with group play matches. The medals will be award in the SL4 event on Sept. 4
Learn more at Paralympic.ca
Canadian softball team wins bronze, makes history
A 3-2 victory over Mexico on Day 4 earned the Canadian softball team, including Saskatoon’s Jenny Gilbert, a bronze medal — the country’s first in the sport at the Olympics.
Emma Entzminger got Canada on the board in the second inning, scoring a pair of RBIs to give the red and white a 2-0 lead. Mexico then added a single in the third inning to cut the lead to one.
After a scoreless fourth inning, Canada and Mexico each picked up a single in the fifth to make the score 3-2. That score carried through to the seventh inning, where three quick outs —one ground out and two strikeouts— secured the victory for the Canadians.
Canadian pitcher Danielle Lawrie —who recorded the win in the bronze-medal game— and infielder Jennifer Salling retired from the national team following the game. Both played for Canada at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, the last time the sport was included in the Games.
Softball has been included in the Olympics five times and was selected as a feature sport for Japan for 2020 Tokyo. It will not be a part of the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.
Read more on softball.ca
Olympic/Paralympic notes: Read the full Day 4 recap at Olympic.ca…Janine Beckie, who has ties to Saskatchewan, and the women’s Canadian soccer team will take on Brazil in the quarterfinals…Regina soccer official received her second assignment at the Olympics …Regina’s Frank Gaudet has been selected as a coach for the Canadian Paralympic badminton team for Tokyo…Canada won four medals on Day 4, bronze in softball, Maude Charron won gold in women’s 64-kilogram weightlifting, Kylie Masse won silver in women’s 100-metre backstroke and Catherine Beauchemin-Pinard won bronze in the women’s judo 63-kilogram division.
Canada finishes softball round robin with 8-1 victory over Italy
The Canadian softball team knew they’d be playing for bronze no matter the outcome of their final round robin game on Sunday, but that didn’t stop them for turning in a dominant 8-1 victory over Italy.
After a scoreless first inning, Saskatoon’s Jenny Gilbert hit a solo home run deep to centre field to give Canada the 1-0 lead.
Both teams scored singles in the third inning to make the score 2-1, where it remained until the fifth inning.
The red and white came out strong in the fifth inning, picking up three runs themselves and held the Italians to no runs to take a commanding 5-1 lead. The actions were repeated in the sixth inning, after which the mercy rule was used, giving Canada the 8-1 win.
The Canadians ended round robin play with a 3-2 record and third place in the standings. Their only losses came in the form of 1-0 defeats against the United States and Japan —who will face each other for gold. The Canadians also only allowed four runs against in the entire tournament.
Canada will take on Mexico —who they previously defeated 4-0 in the round robin — in the bronze medal game on Monday night at 10 p.m. (SK time). The game is scheduled to be streamed on CBC Gem and available to watch on Sportsnet or Sportsnet One. Potential bad weather in Japan may force the game to be rescheduled.
Learn more at softball.ca.
Canadian women’s basketball team loses opener to Serbia 72-68
After fighting back from an eight-point deficit at halftime to tie the game 45-45 after three quarters, the Canadian women’s basketball team —led by Saskatchewan-based head coach Lisa Thomaidis— narrowly lost their opening Olympic game 72-68 to Serbia.
“We want to win every game we play,” head coach Lisa Thomaidis told Basketball Canada after the game. “I thought we had a slow start and got things turned around in the second half, built a lead and then couldn’t put them away. We know they can hit clutch threes and they did that at the right time. We did a lot of really solid things [in the game]. We turned them over 28 times, I was really happy with that, but at the end of the day we’re still disappointed in the loss.”
The Serbs outscored the Canadians 16-13 in the first quarter, 20-15 in the second and 27-23 in the fourth, while Canada won the third quarter 17-9.
Nirra Fields led the red and white with 19 points, followed closely by Kia Nurse with 16. Sonja Vasic led Serbia with 16 points.
Next up, Canada will face the Republic of Korea on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. (SK time) and will be streamed on CBC Gem.
In this year’s Olympic basketball tournament, the top two teams for each of the three groups advance to the quarter-finals, as well as the two third-place teams across all three groups with the best records.
Learn more at basketball.ca.
Olympic/Paralympic Notes: Full Day 3 recap visit, Olympic.ca …Canada earned their first gold and bronze medals of the Games as swimmer Maggie Mac Neil won the women’s 100-metre butterfly and Jessica Klimkait became the first Canadian woman to medal in judo at the Olympics with her bronze-medal performance in the 57-kilogram event…all three medals in the women’s skateboarding street event were won by athletes 16 and under, including the gold which was won by 13-year-old Momiji Nishiya of Japan, making her the youngest individual Olympic champion…bad weather in Japan is causing some outdoor events to be rescheduled…
Canadian softball suffers extra inning heartbreaking loss to Japan
Japan scored the game’s lone run with an extra inning walk off single in the bottom of the eighth to dash Canada’s hopes of playing in the gold medal match Saturday.
The red and white drops to 2-2 with the loss, while the No. 2 ranked Japan moves to 4-0 to equal the top ranked USA. Despite the loss, Canada clinched a spot in the bronze medal game ahead of its final round robin game against Italy at 11:30 p.m. (SK time) Sunday. Canada’s opponent is yet to be determined. The US and Japan will play for gold.
Canada has never won a softball medal at the Games but finished fourth in 2008 in Beijing. The group has only given up three runs in round robin play.
Read more about the game at softball.ca.
Pratt competes in heats
Swimmer Cole Pratt competed in one of six heats for the 100-metre men’s backstroke event. The Regina-born athlete finished seventh in the heat in a time of 54.27 and did not qualify for the semifinal of the event.
For full heat results, visit the official Olympics website.
Borgerson’s athlete competes in 10-metre air pistol
Rockglen coach Lisa Borgerson and Canada’s lone shooting athlete Lynda Kiejko competed in the 10-metre air pistol Saturday. Kiejko finished 47th in qualification with a score of 558. Kiejko will also compete in the 25-metre events.
For detailed results, visit the official Olympics website.
Olympic/Paralympic notes…Read the full Canadian Day 2 recap at Olympics.ca… Canada won a pair of silver medals on Day 2 in the 4X100-metre freestyle women’s swimming relay and the 3-metre synchro diving…
Canadian softball team triumphs over Australia, improves to 2-1
Australia scored a single run in the top of the first inning, but it was the only time they made their way back successfully to home plate as Canada won Friday’s softball game 7-1.
The red and white put their bats to good use in the bottom of the first inning, picking up three runs, to take an early 3-1 lead. They followed that up with another three runs in the second inning to increase their lead to 6-1.
Canada scored their final run of the game in the fourth inning.
On the defensive side, Canada recorded six strikeouts to Australia’s one and held the team from down under to six hits. Saskatoon outfielder Jenny Gilbert recorded two put outs in the game.
With the win, Canada improves to a 2-1 record and sole possession of third place in the rankings. Next up, they’ll face 3-0 Japan on Saturday at 11:30 p.m. (SK time), which can be watched on CBC Gem. They’ll end round robin play on Sunday night with against Italy.
Read more about the game at softball.ca.
Olympic/Paralympic notes…Read the full Canadian Day 1 recap at Olympic.ca… CTV Regina reporter Claire Hanna debuted as a play-by-play commentator for women’s beach volleyball… Janine Beckie, whose parents lived in Saskatchewan, scored both Canadian goals in the teams 2-1 win over Chile… the first medals of the Games were awarded on Friday in women’s 10-metre rifle during a self-serve ceremony…Saskatchewan coach Lisa Borgerson and her athlete Lynda Kiejko will compete on Saturday in women’s 10-metre air pistol, beginning at 6 p.m. (SK time) on CBC Gem.
Written by: Matt Johnson for Sask Sport
Photo credits: Canada Basketball and Diving Canada/Francois Mittens
With Day 1 of the Tokyo Summer Olympics queued, three female coaches with Saskatchewan connections, will have the opportunity to represent the province on amateur sport’s grandest stage.
Lisa Thomaidis, Lisa Borgerson and Mary Carroll are set to don the maple leaf at the Summer Games. And for the trio, their involvement in high-profile positions highlights the continual growth of female coaches not only within the province, but also the nation.
While for each of the three the 2020 Olympic opportunity isn’t the first, it’s one that’s cherished perhaps more so than any other considering the uncertainty regarding the Games over the course of the last 18 months.
Thomaidis, who is the head coach of the Canadian women’s basketball team and the University of Saskatchewan Huskies women’s basketball team, noted she has been with her team in a bubble since May 19 and finally reaching the Olympic Village is “very exciting.”
The head coach of the national team since 2013, Thomaidis will be appearing at her third consecutive games and second as a head coach. The team is ranked fourth in the world and begins preliminary round play on July 26 against Serbia.
And while she was born in Dundas, Ont., she has spent the last 23 years living in Saskatoon and feels deeply connected with the province.
“I love being able to represent Saskatchewan on the Olympic stage,” she said from Tokyo. “Saskatchewan has provided so many opportunities to me as a female coach, starting with being hired by the University of Saskatchewan, then my involvement with our provincial team. Sask Sport, Basketball Saskatchewan and the University of Saskatchewan have all been such wonderful supports, so I’m proud to be able to represent our province.”
Thomaidis frequently references to the support systems she had throughout her growth as a female coach and hopes she can be viewed in a similar light.
“My female coaches growing up and at university, and then my colleagues as a University and National Team coach have all played such a huge part in my development as a coach and as an individual,” said Thomaidis. “Having role models to look up to and learn from is so important to help pave the way for more female coaches to enter into this profession.
“I’m honoured and happy if I’ve been able to be that for someone else. I always feel like there is more that I can do in that regard, but if I’ve been able to inspire any young woman to enter into this profession, then I’m proud.”
Borgerson will be making another appearance at the Games after also representing Canada at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Borgerson, who hails from Rockglen, Sask., will be accompanying the lone Canadian athlete in the sport Lynda Kiejko at the Games as pistol coach.
Perhaps no one appreciates the Games coming to fruition more so than Borgerson, who has been working in COVID-19 testing and vaccinations over the last 14 months. While Borgerson notes she kept her Olympic opportunity on the down low at work, her mom is a different story who Borgerson says is her number-one fan.
Having role models to look up to and learn from is so important to help pave the way for more female coaches to enter into this profession.Lisa Thomaidis
Despite putting the news on the back burner, Borgerson has pride in the opportunity to represent her province and the town of Rockglen on the world stage, as well as her background.
“I’m proud to be able to be from Saskatchewan and to be doing this as well. Coaching is my niche,” said Borgerson. “I’m proud that even my national sport has sent the best to represent Canada. I’m proud of my achievements and my background as well. That’s what has provided me the chance to move forward and Canada as well when it comes to the women in coaching aspect of it.”
While Thomaidis and Bergerson will be attending their second Games in a five-year span, Mary Carroll will be taking part in her first in nearly thirty years. This year’s instalment of the games is her first as a coach with the Canadian Diving Team, after previously competing as an athlete in the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.
Carroll is a coach with the Saskatoon Diving Club, and of Rylan Wiens, a 19-year old from Pike Lake, who will be making his Olympic debut in the 10-metre platform event on August 6.
While Carroll notes that coaching is a lot more nerve-racking than diving herself, she can’t wait to be poolside as a support to Wiens.
As a woman in sport, Carroll recognizes the significance in being one of three female coaches with ties to the province who will be in Tokyo.
“I think it’s awesome for other coaches. I think it’s awesome for any female athletes to realize that it’s not a man’s sport. It’s not anybody’s sport, it’s sport and you do your job and you do it well, you can achieve any dream you want,” said Carroll.
And while like Thomaidis, she hails from Ontario, Carroll now calls Saskatoon home and describes the opportunity to represent Saskatchewan on the world stage as “amazing.”
“I’ve raised my kids here, it does feel like home. I was born in Ontario and did my stint of diving as an athlete in Ontario. But my stint as a coach started when we moved here 15 years ago, and this is home. Saskatoon is home. and all I can say is go green and yellow.”
Wiens represents Canada at the Opening Ceremony
Saskatchewan diver Rylan Wiens was one of 30 Canadian athletes to march in the opening ceremony for the Tokyo Summer Olympics.
Wiens, from Pike Lake, will compete in the 10-metre platform event starting Aug. 6. At the opening ceremony, he joined Canadian flag bearers Miranda Ayim from women’s basketball and Nathan Hirayma, co-captain of the men’s rugby seven’s team, as well as athletes from badminton, canoe slalom, BMX, fencing, shooting, skateboarding, tennis and weightlifting. Six mission staff members also marched in the ceremony.
On Day 1 of competition (July 23 overnight in Saskatchewan), Saskatoon’s Jenny Gilbert and the Canadian softball team will meet Australia in the third round robin game at 7 p.m. (SK time).
Olympic/Paralympic Notes: Canadian rowers competed in heats overnight on July 22. All three boats — Trevor Jones in men’s single sculls, Carling Zeeman in women’s double sculls and Gabrielle and Jessica Sevick in women’s double skulls — moved on to the next round. Rowing continues on Day 1…
For more information visit Olympic.ca
Paralympics.ca, July 22, 2021
Photo credit: Canadian Paralympic Committee
Melfort’s Julie Kozun was among the 11 athletes named to represent Canada in women’s sitting volleyball by the Canadian Paralympic Committee and Volleyball Canada at the Tokyo Paralympic Games next month.
All 11 athletes are returning from the bronze medal performance at the 2019 Parapan Am Games including Kozun. She is one of three on the roster making their Paralympic debut.
Canada earned a spot at the Paralympics with a victory in its last-chance qualification tournament hosted in Halifax in February 2020. It is the second straight appearance for Canada in the sport at the Games.
The red and white are ranked fifth in the world and will compete against seven countries including USA, China, Italy, Brazil, Rwanda, Japan and the Russian Paralympic Committee. The schedule for the event will be determined at a later date.
Read more at Paralympic.ca