General News

Canada Enjoys Best Day Yet at Parapan Am Games

Canadian swimmers and track and field athletes combined for 28 of the country’s 29 medals on Wednesday to remain second in the overall medal standings but pulled away from the third place Americans.

Priscilla Gagne of Ottawa added a silver in judo in the women’s 52 kg. Canada also has teams in sitting volleyball, wheelchair rugby, wheelchair basketball and goalball all headed to semifinals.

Brazil leads with 166 medals, Canada has 37 gold, 40 silver and 36 bronze for 113 and the U.S., is third at 75. After Tuesday Canada was only five medals ahead of the Americans. The team objective when the Games end August 15 is to stand third overall in total medals.


Tess Routliffe of Caledon, Ont., kept the Canadian pool party going in para-swimming with two gold on at 2015 Parapan American Games.

Canadian swimmers won 15 medals Wednesday (five gold, five silver, five bronze), bringing their total to 66 (18-27-21).

“It gives me confidence to know I can perform under pressure,” she said. “Swim with the right mindset with all the distractions.”

Aurelie Rivard earned her fourth gold of the meet and the men swept the S11-13 400-meter freestyle.

In the most anticipated race of the night Benoit Huot finished second in the S10 200-meter individual medley, while Alec Elliot was third.

Here is the para-swimming honour roll for Wednesday:

Gold: Aurelie Rivard, St-Jean-sur Richelieu, Que., S9-10 200-m IMTess Routliffe, Caledon, Ont., S7 100-m freestyle and 100-m breaststroke; Devin Gotell, Antigonish, N.S., S11-13 400-m freestyle; Justine Morrier, St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, S14 100-m breaststroke.

Silver: Benoit Huot, Longueuil, Que., 200-m IM; Katarina Roxon, Kippens, N.L., S9-10 200-m IM; Sarah Mehain, Vernon, B.C., 100-m freestyle; Nicolas Turbide, Quebec City, S11-13 400-m freestyle; Jean-Michel Lavalliere, Quebec City, S7 100-m freestyle.

Bronze: Alec Elliot, Kitchener, Ont., 200-m IM; Camille Berube, Gatineau, Que., 100-m breaststroke; Tyler Mrak, Aldergrove, B.C., S11-13 400-m freestyle; Kirstie Kasko, Okotoks, Alta., S14 100-m breaststroke; Gordie Michie, St. Thomas, Ont., S14 100-m breaststroke.


Canada threw a 1-2 punch with Jennifer Brown of Calgary and Renee Foessel of Mississauga, Ont., exchanging gold/silver placings and setting continental records in two events Wednesday as Canada enjoyed its best day in athletics.

Canada accumulated seven gold, two silver and four bronze.

Brown won the women’s shot put in the F20/37/38 disability category with a best throw of 10.42 metres, an Americas record. Foessel followed at 10.14 in the six-woman final.

Later on, Foessel threw 30.75 metres in the discus for the gold and America’s mark. Brown’s best was 28.06. There were six entries.

Brown and Foessel want to continue their success.

”We are aiming for long term goals,” said Foessel. ”We can both achieve the podium.”

“Really fantastic synergy, we have competed together, we drive each other, when I throw well, Renee wants to throw well and vice versa,” added Brown.

Other victors were Jason Roberts of Toronto in the F32/33/34 shot put, Pam LeJean of Halifax in the F53/54/55 shot put with a Games record 4.22 metres, Mitchell Chase of Pickering, Ont., in the T38 1500-m, Guillaume Ouellet of Victoriaville, Que., in the T13 1500-m and Alexandre Dupont of St-Remi, Que., in the T54 400-m.

Bronze medallists were Kyle Pettey of Brampton, Ont., in the F32/33/34 shot put, Ness Murby of Salt Spring Island, B.C., in the F11/12 discus, Leah Robinson of Kitchener, Ont., in the T37 200-m and Ken Trudgeon of London, Ont., in the F46 discus.


Priscilla Gagne of Ottawa won the silver medal and gained valuable qualifying points for next summer’s Paralympic Games on Wednesday in judo for the visually impaired at the Parapan American Games.

Competing in women’s 52 kilo class, Gagne posted a record of three wins and one loss in the round robin tournament. Her only loss was a tight second match defeat by two Shidos to Brazil’s Michele Ferreira. The Brazilian went on to win gold with a perfect 4-0 mark.

Gagne defeated Christina Thomas of the U.S., by Ippon in a mere 20 seconds as well as Andreia Canteiro of Brazil and Rocio Ledesma of Argentina, also both by Ippon.

“Hearing both of my coaches giving support, one from the side, one from the coach’s box, along with my family in the stands, made all the difference,” said Gagne. ”They really compliment each other and it’s having that support that ultimately pushed me to perform better on the mat.”


In one of the most exciting wheelchair rugby games in recent memory, Canada was narrowly defeated 60-59 by the USA in double overtime in the final round robin game of the Toronto 2015 Parapan Am Games. Canada will now play Brazil tomorrow to earn a spot in the gold medal game and a chance for a rematch.

“Games like these come down to little mistakes,” said head coach Kevin Orr. “You can’t afford to make little mistakes at this level, and that’s what cost us.”

Canada will face Brazil in the semi-finals tomorrow at 5:45 pm at the Mississauga Sports Center.


The ability to fight through adversity was key for the unbeaten Canadian Parapan Am Men’s Wheelchair Basketball Team Wednesday when they routed Puerto Rico 73-34 in order to earn their spot in Friday’s semifinals. Carrying a 4-0 record Canada will now face 3-1 Brazil for their chance to advance to the gold medal final. With two berths available, a win on Friday would guarantee the Canadian Men a spot in the Rio 2016 Paralympics.

“Step by step, inch by inch, and game by game, we are building toward our goal of securing our spot in Rio. We are a young team that is rebuilding, and we know what we have to do to be successful. We are focused on the outcome and despite the challenges we are confident in our ability to get there,” said Team Canada’s head coach Steve Bialowas.

Despite outscoring their opponents by 39 points, the Canadians struggled to find their rhythm at times. They shot just 36% from the field in the first half, but still managed to establish a 12-point lead heading into the break. Puerto Rico’s Carlos Ocasio stole some of the momentum by beating the buzzer with a long distance three-pointer making the score 34-22 at the end of two frames.

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Story from the Canadian Paralympic Committee |

Photo: CSIO