Weekend recap: Para athletes lead the way for Canada

By admin Nov28,2023

This is an excerpt from The Buzzer, which is CBC Sports’ daily email newsletter. Stay up to speed on what’s happening in sports by subscribing here.

From the summer Parapan Am Games in Chile to various winter sports around the globe, here’s a look at what Canadian athletes did over the weekend in Olympic and Paralympic sports:

Parapan Am Games: Canada finishes with 9 gold, 3 Paralympic spots earned

When the flame went out last night in Chile, the Canadian team walked away with 52 medals — nine gold, 15 silver and 28 bronze. That was good for eighth in the official standings, which are sorted by gold, and Canada finished sixth in total medals. Brazil ran away with first place with a whopping 156 gold medals (nearly tripling the second-place United States’ haul) and 343 total.

Canadians also earned three entries in next summer’s Paralympic Games in Paris. The women’s goalball team got in by defeating the United States in their gold-medal game on Friday, boccia players Alison Levine and Iulian Ciobanu won a spot with their pairs title victory, and archer Kyle Tremblay landed one with a bronze in his event.

WATCH | Canada strikes goalball gold against United States:

GOLD MEDAL: Canadian women edge Americans to claim Parapan Am goalball gold

Featured VideoEmma-Leigh Reinke scored a hat-trick, including two successful penalty conversions, and Canada hung on for a 4-3 victory in the Santiago 2023 Parapan American Games women’s goalball gold medal final. The win also gives Canada a berth at the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

Three Canadian teams fell short of the gold medal they needed to qualify for the Paralympics but still earned a spot in a last-chance qualifier next year. The wheelchair rugby and men’s and women’s wheelchair basketball squads will all get their shot in March or April.

Cyclist Alexandre Hayward was Canada’s top medal winner with four. His two golds tied him for the Canadian lead with Levine, who won a singles title before her pairs victory on Saturday. The 33-year-old Levine, now the owner of four Parapan Am Games medals in three appearances, was selected to carry the Canadian flag for yesterday’s closing ceremony.

CBC Sports’ Devin Heroux was in Chile covering the Parapan Ams. Read his reflection on the Games here. See the complete list of Canadian medallists here.

Figure skating: 5 Canadian teams qualify for the Grand Prix Final

Three Canadian pairs teams and two ice dance duos accumulated enough points this season to secure an invitation to the Dec. 7-10 Final in Beijing, which is reserved for the top six in each discipline. None of those Canadians competed at this weekend’s regular-season-ending NHK Trophy in Japan, where Canada’s Kelly Ann Laurin and Loucas Ethier finished seventh in the pairs event, Marie-Jade Lauriault and Romain Le Gac were seventh in the ice dance and Wesley Chiu was 11th in the men’s. Read about the results of all four events here.

The Canadian qualifiers for the Final are led by defending ice dance champions Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier, who tied for first place in their standings after winning both of their Grand Prix starts. Deanna Stellato-Dudek and Maxime Deschamps did the same in pairs. Lia Pereira and Trennt Michaud were third in pairs while Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Sorensen and Marjorie Lajoie and Zachary Lagha tied for fifth in ice dance. No Canadian singles skaters qualified for the Final.

Skiing: Freestyler Evan McEachran lands his first World Cup win

McEachran’s victory happened in time to make Friday’s newsletter. But it bears repeating because no other Canadian skier won a medal this weekend, which included a pair of women’s alpine races and World Cup season openers in cross-country and biathlon.

McEachran was awarded his first-ever World Cup victory at the men’s ski slopestyle season opener in Austria after severe winds forced the cancellation of the final round. The 26-year-old two-time Olympian had the top score in qualifying.

American alpine star Mikaela Shiffrin won Sunday’s slalom race in Vermont for her record-extending 90th career World Cup victory. Shiffrin also took bronze in Saturday’s giant slalom to widen her lead in the standings as she chases a women’s record-tying sixth overall title.

Canada’s Laurence St-Germain, who upset Shiffrin to win the slalom world title last season, placed 14th in Sunday’s race. Canada’s Val Grenier was fifth in Saturday’s giant slalom, giving her four straight top-seven finishes dating back to last season.

The lone Canadian stop on the alpine World Cup tour is coming up this weekend, when Quebec’s Mont Tremblant hosts a pair of women’s giant slalom races.

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