Whitehorse Daily Star

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GREAT GRAPPLER – Yukon’s Jaymi Hinchey holds down an opponent during a judo match at the 2023 Canada Games in P.E.I. Wednesday. Hinchey went on to win a bronze in the under 57-kg Female category. Photo courtesy of TEAM YUKON/SARAH LEWIS PHOTOGRAPHY

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SUPER SKATER – Yukon’s Mike Sumner competes in the Special Olympics Singles Level 3 Male category at the 2023 Canada Games in P.E.I. Thursday. Sumner won gold.Photo courtesy of TEAM YUKON/SARAH LEWIS PHOTOGRAPHY

Yukon wraps up 2023 Canada Winter Games with multiple medals

The Yukon has wrapped up the 2023 Canada Winter Games with multiple medals.

By Morris Prokop on March 6, 2023

The Yukon has wrapped up the 2023 Canada Winter Games with multiple medals.

Cheyenne Tirschmann and Cole Germain got Yukon started off with a bronze in the mixed biathlon relay Feb. 24.

Mike Sumner struck gold for the Yukon in the Figure Skating Special Olympics Level 3 Male category Thursday.

Jaymi Hinchey mined bronze for the Yukon in the Judo under 57-kg Female category on Thursday as well.

The girls’ hockey team finished off their Games in fine style, winning their second straight game over N.W.T., this time by a 6-0 score, to clinch 11th place overall.

After a scoreless first period, Sophia Leas got Yukon started off with her first goal of the tourney 1:26 into the second period.

Callie Quaile notched her first 1:07 later to put Yukon up 2-0.

Taylor Bierlmeier doubled her goal total with 9:37 left in the second to make it 3-0, the lead Yukon took with them into the dressing room at the break.

It took Quaile just 2:05 into the third period to add her second goal.

Rachel Kormendy got in on the action at about two and a half minutes later to put Yukon up 5-0.

Sophie Drummond finished off the scoring with 14:31 left in the game to make the final score 6-0 Yukon.

Alix Walchuk got the shutout for the Yukon girls.

It’s the female hockey team’s best result in recent Games history.

Also on Friday, the snowboarders had to deal with fresh snow and slower conditions in the snowboardcross event, a style they don’t participate in often. Connor Boland, Eli Wolsky, Lewis Bunce, Sascha Nelson and Riley Boland all competed in the qualifiers. Four of the five made it through to the qualifications, where Lewis had the stand-out race, placing third in his heat.

On the badminton courts, Yukon took on New Brunswick in the team event. The team fell 5-0 but had good rallies against their maritime opponent.

Nico Fecteau and Bayly Scoffin were on fire as Yukon’s mixed doubles curling duo swept aside N.W.T. in their final game, 8-1.

The archers shot in front of the largest crowd they’ve ever competed in front of. Day 14 consisted of match play, or one vs. one elimination, until a winner was decided. Compound archer Sofija Jewell made it to the quarter-final, while Emmett Kapaniuk lost by one point in the preliminary round. In recurve, Shiori Monzo fell in the preliminary round.

Daniel Mead made it to the quarters but fell to his Alberta counterpart.

On the cross country trails, the team competed in the free mass start races. The women raced 10 km and had the entire team make the top 30. Constance Lapointe was 15th, Minty Bradford 17th, Sophia Giangrande 18th, Cheyenne Tirschmann 21st, Sophie Molgat 23rd, and Maude Molgat placed 28th. Minty had a breakthrough race and said it was the best race she’s had. The boys raced 15 km and had a rougher day as many were battling illness. Daniel Phillips-Freedman broke a pole the first lap but got a new one and battled hard to make up ground. Cole Germain was the top Yukon finisher, placing 24th.

On Saturday, the 2023 Games introduced a new format in cross country skiing with the mixed gendered 4x5 relays. It was also new that more than one team per contingent could compete. Cole Germain, Constance Lapointe, Simon Connell and Minty Bradford secured ninth. The other two Yukon teams placed 12th and 13th.

It was the final day for the badminton team as they took on the N.W.T. in the team competition. It was a tough battle but the Yukon came up short, falling 3-2 and placing 13th overall.

The female judoka, Leah McLean, Kaylee Fortier and Jaymi and Lia Hinchey, fought in the team competition. Fortier, McLean, and Lia Hinchey moved up in weight classes to compete in the event. The team fought hard against Alberta but couldn’t pick up a win. Against B.C., bronze medalist Jaymi defeated B.C.’s minus 57-kg black belt.

The snowboarders wrapped up their Games with the big air competition. Riley Boland just missed the finals on the girls side, placing ninth. Stian Langbakk also sat just outside the finals, placing 13th. In the women’s event, the top eight moved on; it was top 12 for the men’s division.

In alpine, the team spent the day doing qualifiers for Sunday’s ski cross racers. Tori Vollmer, who received her skis after they were lost all week, qualified in the 10th position.

The compound archery team of Emmett Kapaniuk and Sofija Jewell finished their Canada Games in seventh. The duo fell to Ontario in the quarter-finals. Recurve archers Shiori Monzo and Daniel Mead placed eighth overall and also lost to Ontario in the quarters. Saturday also marked Daniel’s birthday; the fans and participants at the archery venue all sang him Happy Birthday.

On Sunday, the alpine ski team finished off their Canada Games in the ski cross event. Mack Jenner had the strongest showing, making it through to the semifinals, then placing third in the small final.

Special Olympics figure skater Michael Sumner, fresh off his gold medal performance on Thursday, was named the Week 2 recipient of the Pat Lechelt award. The award is presented to one athlete each week who exemplifies the True Sport principles on and off the field of play.

The closing ceremonies took place on Sunday afternoon. Team Yukon was led into the closing ceremonies by Week 2 medal winners Michael Sumner and Jaymi Hinchey.

– With files from a Team Yukon press release.

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