WMHA Midget A1 team sweep Kelowna tournament 

Sports Briefs: Whistler skaters success; Alex Harvey celebrates silver; WMSC fundraiser

click to flip through (2) PHOTO SUBMITTED BY DEVON BRUSSE - Hockey Stars The WMHA Midget A1 team swept last weekend's Kelowna Tier 3 tournament
  • Photo submitted by Devon Brusse
  • Hockey Stars The WMHA Midget A1 team swept last weekend's Kelowna Tier 3 tournament

Whistler's Midget A1 hockey team went undefeated in last weekend's, Nov. 20-22, Tier 3 hockey tournament in Kelowna at 5-0.

"The most talked about and built-up game was when we played the host team, Kelowna, and won 8-3. It was our best game of the tourney and of our season so far," said coach Mike Borrelli in an email.

The team played Langley in the finals winning 5-2 with "huge goals" coming form Kevin Ranada and Jordan Chinapen.

"All the players battled through a ton of bumps, bruises and injuries," said Borrelli. "They showed what it means to be tough in terms of hockey."

The standout player of the weekend, said Borrelli, was Cody Flann who led the team with 11 goals. 

"The entire team stepped up in a big way with some very key players missing in action, due to injuries sustained earlier in the season," he added.

Key players were Xavier Cadoret, Gabriel Matteau Rushbrook and Cameron Waisman. Also "essential to the wins," said Borrelli, were Nevin Sandhu, Kobe Burton, Owen Hart, Finn Withey, Owen Reith, Luke Parry, Noah Brusse, Noah Malthaner, Jan Larsen, Matt Hedberg, Gabe Kryzanowski, Ranada, Chinapen and Tormod Hoff Skarasen. 

Borelli also wanted to thank the team staff and a great parent support group.

Alex Harvey celebrates silver at FIS race in Sweden

Alex Harvey put a silver lining around the final preparations to his World Cup season while hopping onto the podium in a 15-kilometre skate-ski FIS race Nov.22 in Gallivare, Sweden.

The Saint Ferreol les Neiges, Que. resident pushed the pace off the start, leading the race by five seconds over the first five-kilometres before Russia's Sergey Ustiugov countered over the second half of the race to pull away from the field. The 27-year-old Harvey clocked a time of 32:40.4 on the hard-packed snow conditions.

"It is always good to get the season started, and I'm excited to head to Finland with two solid results under my belt," said Harvey.  

Harvey was sandwiched on the podium between two Russians. Ustiugov set the golden pace at 32:12.9, while Evgeniy Belov skied to his second straight bronze medal with a time of 32:55.1.

Harvey's World Cup comrade, Devon Kershaw, will also take some good vibes with him into the start of the World Cup season next weekend. Looking to rebound from a season plagued with illness and injury, the veteran of the National Ski Team from Sudbury, Ont., showcased he is poised to get back into podium contention this year with a rock solid fourth-place finish. The 32-year-old Kershaw clocked-in at 33:17.9.

Ivan Babikov, of Canmore, Alta., cracked the top-10 with an eighth-place result at 33:51.5, while Graeme Killick, of Fort McMurray, Alta., placed 11th (34:19.8).

Meanwhile, Emily Nishikawa squeaked into the Top-10 as the lone Canadian in the women's field at the FIS race in Gallivare. The 26-year-old from Whitehorse battled through the cool conditions to place ninth at 27:43.9.

"I was happy to start the season with a good race! I've had a good summer of training and feeling strong coming into the race season so I was really excited to race today," said Nishikawa.

"I felt strong in my quarter- and semi-final, but not as good in the final. I made some poor lane choices at the start and got myself boxed out on the first climb and wasn't able to really do much after that."

Posting the fifth fastest time in the qualification round on the one-kilometre classic-ski sprint track, the 26-year-old Nishikawa took advantage of fast skis and ideal race conditions to win her opening heat, and earned a spot in the finals after crossing the line second in the semifinals.

American Jessica Diggins finished on top for the second straight day after stopping the clock at 25:08.7. Petra Novakova, of the Czech Republic, skied to the silver with a time of 25:19.4, while Caitlin Gregg, also of the United States, finished 30 seconds off the pace in third at 25:38.8.

The Canadian National Ski Team will open the World Cup season in Ruka, Finland, this weekend, Nov. 27-29.

Whistler skaters hit podium in Jingle Blades event

Five Whistler skaters competed at this past weekend's Jingle Blades skating competition, all taking home silver or bronze awards.

More than 700 skaters from all over B.C. competed in the four-day competition over the weekend.

Clara Iida, Natalia Contreras Lobato, both skating at the Star 3 level, performed their new solos and nailed solid spins and difficult jumps.

Competing in their very first skating competition, Thea Torn, Ellie Peier and Sarah Pomroy skated in the Star 1 level. They performed eight individual elements, remaining focused, despite performing for the first time in front of a panel of judges and a large audience of spectators.

"I could not have asked the skaters to do any better," said skating coach Dianne Diamond.

"Every skater performed a personal best all around. I am so very proud of their performance, how hard they worked leading up to the competition, and the dedication they have shown since the skating season began in September."

Their next competition will be Winter Skate on Feb. 5 in Chilliwack where a total of 10 Whistler skaters will compete.

The skating club has now turned its focus to preparing for the annual Santa Skate on Thursday, Dec. 10 at 5 p.m. The public is welcome to watch the Star, Silver and Gold level skaters perform and then join Santa on the ice for a fun disco skate.

Tickets on sale for the WMSC Dust Up at Dusty's

Well it is that time of year again — The Whistler Mountain Ski Club's annual Dust Up at Dusty's.

Bring your friends and enjoy a wicked evening of fun, live music, dancing and adult beverages. Live and silent auctions will be on offer.

The event is on Saturday, Dec. 5, 2015starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are $100 and available at www.wmsc.info/event/dust-up-at-dustys-2.

The majority of the ticket price goes towards fundraising with a goal of upgrading the club's fleet of vehicles.



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