The agony and the ecstasy 

More medals, more disappointment for Team Canada

It’s hard to sum up these Olympic Games for Team Canada, other than to say it has been an emotional roller coaster that leaves one feeling exhilarated and queasy.

On one hand you have Calgary’s Kyle Shewfelt, edging out the top gymnasts in the world to win a gold medal with an almost flawless floor routine – Canada’s first ever Olympic medal in the sport.

On the other you have Perdita Felicien, the world champion hurdler and a favourite to win a medal. For the first time she can remember she mis-timed her first jump and crashed into the first hurdle, falling sideways into a Russian athlete in the next lane.

On one hand you have the performance of cyclist Lori-Ann Muenzer of Edmonton, who beat the defending Olympic and world champions in the final rounds to claim gold, Canada’s first ever gold medal in a track sprint event.

On the other you have the men’s baseball team’s shocking loss to Cuba in the semi-finals, giving up a one-point lead to open the door for an 8-5 final score. They went on to lose to Japan 11-2 in the consolation final to finish in fourth place.

On one hand you have diver Alexandre Despatie coming back from ninth-place to finish second in the three-metre event, becoming the first Canadian male to medal in an Olympic diving event.

On one hand you have Quebec’s Tonya Verbeek, winning Canada’s first medal – a silver – in the women’s wrestling event. Karen Cockburn also came through in the trampoline event, bettering her bronze in 2000 by winning the silver medal this year.

On the other hand you have the disappointing results by the cycling teams in the time trials event and in the women’s triathlon – neither expected medals, but both expected to do a lot better in the overall standings.

On the other you have the men’s eights rowing squad, the world champions and favourites, melting down in the finals to finish dead last.

On the one hand you have the men’s fours team, which hung in to win a silver medal. On the other, the women’s pairs team just missed the podium by finishing fourth.

Fourth place is where a lot of Canadians are finishing up these days. Shewfelt had the opportunity to add a bronze medal to his tally in the vault on Monday, only to see the judges award Romania’s Marian Dragulescu an impossibly high score after he stumbled on landing his second attempt.

Canadian kayaker David Ford, a strong medal contender with three Olympics under his belt, also finished fourth behind competitors he had previously beaten in World Cup and World Championship competitions.

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