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Badminton Teams Battle at Provincials

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The SVRSS Junior and Senior Badminton players headed separate ways but with the same goal last weekend (May 3-5), The Junior players attended the Provincial Championships in Winkler and the Seniors headed to Thompson forcing the coaching staff to split up to help their athletes.
At the Junior Provincials, Emily Mayuk and Kiana Halkett went six wins and only one loss in the round-robin to be second in their Girls’ Doubles pool and up against a third place team from Carberry. With that win and a win over Sanford they were in the semi-final with two chances at a medal.
The Mel Johnson team came out ready to battle winning first of the best-of-three match 21-19.
“With a great pep talk from coach Kyle Lylyk settling them down and building their confidence, they bounced right back with a convincing win 21-12 then fought hard to win the third match 21-19 advancing them to the final guaranteeing them a silver medal,” said Coach Marni Zamzow.
Lac Du Bonnet was a tough team to beat in the final losing the first game 21-7, but without folding their tent they came on strong, but just not quite enough, losing 21-17.
“Coach Lylyk was super proud of the girls’ efforts throughout the championship,” said Zamzow. “As these are Grade 10 girls, they now move up to the Senior category next year. Hopefully they will get another crack at those Lac Du Bonnet girls next year.”
Wade Hack earned his way to Junior Provincials in the Boys’ Singles category where he won two of his seven round-robin games. His losses were extremely close in three of them losing 21-19, 23-21 and 21-19.
“Wade battled hard with his first experience at Badminton Provincials and looks forward to Seniors in the next two years,” said Zamzow.
The Seniors were in Thompson with big goals as three Grade 12 players had their last chance at a banner finish.
Rachel Negrave – a Grade 12 Girls’ Singles player – went five wins and two losses in round-robin putting her third in her pool.
Negrave played a girl from Leo Remillard in her first playoff game seated second from another pool. She went on to win the first match of the best-of-three, 21-16. That girl battled back tough winning 21-10 and 21-17.
“She was strong – eventually finishing sixth in the championship,” said Zamzow. “That put her best hope of a ninth place finish, and after last year’s sixth place finish she was disappointed but pulled herself together to finish strong.”
Negrave would win a nail biting 22-20 and 22-20 match for an 11th place finish over a girl from Prairie Mountain.
“Rachel gave all the determination she had to finish with a win,” said Zamzow. “Coach Larry Kooistra and I were super proud.”
Sean Kirkpatrick and Ethan Campbell the Grade 12 Boys’ Doubles team had a rough start in the round-robin losing their first match 21-19, then playing the eventual silver medalists. With two losses right off the start the boys had to really dig deep to get them back on the winning side to make the playoffs.
They did, earning four wins and three losses, putting themselves fourth in the pool. Unfortunately that meant playing a number one ranked team from another pool. They lost to Maples in the first playoff game 21-13 and 21-15.
“They were also very disappointed as with that loss put them in best chance of finishing only ninth,” said Zamzow. “After a sixth place finish last year they had high hopes of beating that rank this year. They pulled themselves together and went on to win the 1th spot.”
Kooistra and Zamzow were thrilled to see them play as they can finish very strong.
Cory Sorrell and Austin Homenuik, a Grade 11 Boys’ Doubles team with their first trip to provincials, did quite well in the round-robin, winning four of their seven matches. That made a tie that they had to play against Leo Remillard in a one game to 21 winner advances to next day playoffs and loser is done.
“The boys had beat this team in the round-robin 22-20 so we knew it was going to be tight,” said Zamzow. “It came down to a 21-19 loss that they will remember until next year. We were very impressed with their play in tight games gaining great experience for next year.”
Jackson Kurtz, a Grade 11 Boys’ Singles player, managed to earn two wins but not enough to make it forward to the playoffs.
“Jackson knew going in that there are some incredible players in the province that would be competing at Provincials,” said Zamzow. “He knew his pool was tough but was ready to give it his all. Boys’ Singles is a very tough category to make playoffs. Jackson picked up his play in the last couple games and was happy with himself for what he can accomplish in a singles match.
“I’d like to express my gratitude to those who had played a part in preparing these players for provincials: Larry Kooistra, Kyle Lylyk, Larry Henderson, Kristen Bender and Curtis Hamilton for all their help this season.”
While the season has come to a close, the Swan River Community Club Badminton will start up again in October on Thursday and Sunday nights.
“Come on out and enjoy the fantastic fun sport of badminton,” concluded Zamzow.

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Jakki Lumax
REPORTER
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