(PHOTO PROVIDED: Padraic McCombe. Alberta North Juvenile Female Futsal Team in Nuuk, Greenland for 2016 Arctic Winter Games.)
The Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo was well represented at this weeks Arctic Winter Games in Nuuk, Greenland and many of the athletes from the region are returning with not only a pile of memories, but with a medal around their neck.
22 athletes from the region picked up medals and helped Alberta North to a third place finish in the medal standings with a total of 88 medals. Alaska ran away with the medal count, racking up 216 total medals including 83 gold while the Yukon placed second with 100 medals.
The RMWB was highlighted by four gold medals from 19 year old snowboarder Alex McKinnon. Competing in her second Arctic Winter Games, McKinnon won gold in Slopestyle, Rail Jam, Slalom and Snowboard Cross. At the 2014 Winter Games in Alaska, she picked up four medals as well winning gold in Arctic Air, silver in Slopestyle and Rail Jam and a bronze in Slalom.
In Badminton, it was Dhruv Patel picking up three medals, winning gold in Juvenile Male Singles and Doubles with partner Aaron Quan and then a silver in mixed doubles with partner Kennedy Turcotte. Quan also won a bronze medal in male singles. On the female side, Maana Thakore took the silver medal in Juvenile doubles with partner Kennedy Turcotte and Eilish Quan won a bronze medal in Junior doubles with partner Kassidy Turcotte.
In the Dene Games the region saw much success picking up a total of six medals. Alice Ladouceur of Fort McKay won silver in Hand Games and a bronze in Finger Pull, Kayla Campbell of Fort Chipewyan won silver in Hand Games, Tiarra Trembley of Conklin won silver in Hand Games, while Mikeela Cooper (Fort McKay) and Shania Desjarlais (Conklin) picked up bronze medals in Pole Push.
In the team sports, Fort McMurray was well represented in both hockey and futsal. The Alberta North Bantam male hockey team took gold defeating the Northwest Territories in the final 5-4. Nicholas Keys chipped in 2 goals and 5 assists in the tournament and Chase Cook added an assist, while Connor Horne picked up four helpers. On the Junior female team, Alberta North won a silver medal after losing in the final 5-1 to the Northwest Territories. Lyndsey Janes led the team in scoring with 5 goals and 3 assists. Georgia Paradis picked up three assists in the tournament, Skyler Wiltsie had two helpers while Madison Dirk chipped in with one.
In women’s futsal, Ashley Delint and Hannah Woodley helped the Junior female team to a silver medal. The girls lost to Alaska 2-1 in the final. In the Juvenile girls division, four McMurrayites won a bronze medal after beating Yukon 3-0. Chloe Trottier finished the tournament second in goals with five while Ipshita Tomar, Danielle Gouthro and Haley Moore helped guide the team to a podium finish.
The men’s futsal teams didn’t fair as well as both the Junior and Juvenile teams finished in fifth place. Austin Couture, Rylee White, Judah Legaree, Corbin Cyprien, George McCombe and Levi Legaree represented Fort McMurray.
The 2018 Arctic Winter Games will head to the Northwest Territories as both Hay River and Fort Smith will share hosting duties.