INNSBRUCK, AUSTRIA – The Canadian Youth Olympic Team earned five bronze medals today, bringing the total to nine medals for the Games: two gold, one silver and six bronze. There remains only one more day of competition at the first Winter Youth Olympic Games before the Closing Ceremonies tomorrow.
“Looking back on the performance of the 2012 Canadian Youth Olympic Team, Canadians definitely have reason to be proud,” said Canadian Olympic Committee President Marcel Aubut. “Faced with their first international competition, our athletes have risen to the occasion.”
“After starting slow, we are seeing so many incredible performances and we’re bringing home more medals every day,” said Beckie Scott, Chef de Mission of the 2012 Canadian Youth Olympic Team. “This has been such a phenomenal experience. I couldn’t have asked for a better team. Everything has surpassed my expectations.”
Canada’s men’s hockey team took home the bronze medal after defeating the United States 7-5, withstanding a late American comeback to hold on for the win. Reid Gardiner from Humboldt, Sask. had a goal and four assists to pace the Canadian attack, while Kamloops, B.C.’s Ryan Gropp scored three goals.
“It feels great to score goals, but the most important thing is that the team got the win,” Gropp said. “I thought we all came together as a team and it showed on the ice.”
“Coming together fast as a team is what makes a champion,” said team captain Joseph Hicketts from Kamloops, B.C. “Bronze is good. Ending the tournament with a win leaves us with our emotions high."
Matty Herauf from Calgary earned bronze in the men’s Ski Cross event. Both the men’s and women’s races were cancelled today after 70 cm of snow fell overnight in combination with strong winds and medallists were determined by their qualification results.
“Overall it was a great experience,” Herauf said. “Obviously, it would have been nice to be able to race for it, but a bronze medal is great and I am going to wear it with pride.”
“It’s kind of unfortunate, because I was really excited to race the heats, but that’s the way it goes sometimes,” Sherrett said. “This has been amazing. The people have been so great and the city is so beautiful.”
India Sherrett from Cranbrook, B.C. finished 4th in the women’s event.
Canada’s third bronze medal of the day came from the Ski Jumping team of Taylor Henrich, Dusty Korek and Nathaniel Mah, all from Calgary.
“I am so happy right now,” Henrich said. “We felt we could do it and today we showed Canada and the world what we can do and what we have done.”
“I’m very proud of this,” said Korek. “We were underdogs, but we put a good team together and this is something the younger kids coming up can look up to.”
“We knew that if we jumped the way we are capable of jumping, that the podium was a possibility,” Mah said. “I hope this inspires people and shows them that ski jumpers from Canada can do it.”
Two Canadians stepped onto the podium in Skeleton. Calgary’s Carli Brockway and Corey Gillies from Oakville, Ont, both earned bronze medals.
“It hasn’t really sunk in yet,” Brockway said. “This means a lot. It represents a lot of hard work, a lot of travel and hours at the track. ”
“Being in this moment is the greatest feeling ever,” Gillies said. “I thought I was done after the first run, but I focused, visualized and had an amazing second run.”
Kamloops B.C. curler Corryn Brown and her Austrian teammate Martin Reichel won their morning match against a team from Korea and the Czech Republic by a score of 7-4 before falling 9-3 to a team from Russia and the United States in the quarter-final round.
Thomas Scoffin from Whitehorse and his New Zealand partner Kelsi Heath lost their round of 16 match to a team from Russia and the Czech Republic by a score of 6-5.
Invermere, B.C. alpine skier Martin Grasic was 10th in the men’s slalom race and Montreal’s Lambert Quezel did not finish his first run.
Day 9 also saw a mixed team relay that combined the Cross-Country Skiing team and the Biathlon team in one race. The Canadian squad of Calgary’s Danielle Vrielink and Stuart Harden, Maya MacIsaac-Jones from Athabasca, Alta. and Edmonton’s Matthew Saurette finished 13th.
Day 10 features the gold medal game of the men’s Ice Hockey tournament between Russia and Finland, in addition to the semifinals and final of the mixed doubles Curling tournament and the men’s and women’s two-person Bobsleigh events.
For the most up to date results and information about the Canadian Team, click on http://innsbruck.olympic.ca.