Lakeland strikes gold in snowboarding, bronze in curling as Winter Games wrap up

Andrew Schopp
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Lakeland's Reese McDougall performing a 720 degree spin in the final snowboarding event at the 2014 Saskatchewan Winter Games. McDougall took home a third gold medal on Saturday, winning the U17 division of the final big air event at Little Red River Park. Herald photo by Andrew Schopp 

The 2014 Saskatchewan Winter games wrapped up on Saturday with a series of events handing out their final medals before the closing ceremonies at the Art Hauser Centre.

Eight events were on the docket on Saturday as badminton, biathlon, curling, snowboarding, wrestling, gymnastics, hockey and table tennis closed their doors.

Lakeland girls come together to clinch first victory

The Lakeland girl’s hockey team came together to collect a victory in their last game on Saturday at the Dave G. Steuart Arena.

After losing all three games of preliminary pool play, Lakeland secured their first win of the tournament, beating Rivers West 2-1 on Saturday.

With a win in hand, Lakeland coach Jean Fauchon said the team’s overall experience in the Games was positive as they wrapped things up.

“It’s been a good experience for these girls, they haven’t had the opportunity to play at a high level,” Fauchon said. “Having them all come together and experience a tournament like this is great for them to get them ready for the next step in their hockey careers.”

Noting that the team did not have the opportunity to practise together prior to the tournament, Fauchon said the girls really hit their stride going into their last two games.

“We came together as a team and played a lot better the last few games,” he said. “It’s tough when they are not used to playing together and you just bring them together with no practices but we can see them starting to actually set up a power play and the breakouts came along.”

With Saturday’s triumph, Lakeland finished seventh overall in the tournament standings with a record of 1-3 as South West took the gold medal with a 8-3 win over South East.  

• • •

McDougall dominates snowboarding as event wraps up its inaugural appearance

Lakeland’s Reese McDougall completed the three-peat, taking gold in the snowboarding big air competition on Saturday at Little Red River Park.

McDougall, of Prince Albert, pulled off a 720 manoeuvre in his last run before the final where he clinched his third gold medal in the U17 division.

“He’s a strong rider in all aspects; rails and jumps,” Lakeland coach Adam Balon said of McDougall who dominated the snowboarding event in its inaugural year at the Games.

As the event wrapped up, Lakeland tallied a total of nine golds, four silvers and a bronze in the sport’s premier.

Balon said the Game's first shot at hosting the snowboarding event was a complete success.

“The week went really good, we had some super positive energy and feedback from all the riders,” Balon said. “We had some really good riding go down, there were some big tricks and Lakeland did really good.”

Joining McDougall on the podium was Lakeland teammate Ben Manson with a silver while Sydney Fellman, Kaysi Kilby and Connor Fellman each struck gold in their respective age divisions

The big air event served as the final competition of the snowboarding event. Riders were tasked with going off a single jump and completing a trick to be scored by a panel of judges.

• • •

Lakeland snags one bronze in curling

By Perry Bergson

Lakeland men’s skip Brett Reddekopp liked what his team had to offer in the Saturday noon bronze medal game after a tough loss that morning knocked them out of the gold medal game.

Overall, the Spiritwood rink, which also includes Garrett Reddekopp, Craig Thompson and Devyn Thompson, went 4-1.

“It was disappointing this morning for sure but we can definitely bounce back and we were able to make our shots the second time around,” he said.

The team started the bonspiel on a three-game roll, beating eventual champion South West 6-4 on Thursday morning, Saskatoon 8-5 on Thursday evening and South East 11-8 on Friday afternoon.

In the semifinal on Saturday morning, Rivers West handed them their only loss, a 7-3 decision that relegated them to the bronze medal game.

Reddekopp wasn’t making any excuses.

“It was an early morning; I mean we both playing on the same ice and waking up the same time but he was there and we weren’t,” he said about the loss.

But in the end, he wasn’t upset with bronze.

“I feel great. It’s nice to have the bronze medal, for sure,” Reddekopp said. “I was happy just to be in the top four.”

Meanwhile, in women’s action, Lakeland finished seventh with a 3-3 record. 

They posted two lopsided wins but also suffered a pair of losses in round-robin play. 

“The games we won, we played really well as a team,” Naicam skip Ashley Thevenot said of her rink, which also includes Jasmine Horn and Miranda Knudson of Archerwill and Autumn Lawson of St. Front.

They lost a heart-breaker 7-6 to Team Parkland Valley on Saturday morning to end up in the seven-eight game in the afternoon. 

They finished in style, however, with a thrilling 8-7 win over Team South West in an extra end.

And there were no complaints from the skip.

“It was a really cool experience curling against all of the good teams from across the province.” 

Team South East captured the women’s gold.

Organizations: Art Hauser Centre, Prince Albert, U17 division

Geographic location: Lakeland, Saskatchewan, South East Little Red River Park Spiritwood

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