Triumph and devotion drive B.C.’s most inspirational sports stories of 2018

BLACK PRESS YEAR IN REVIEW

Triumph and devotion drive B.C.’s most inspirational sports stories of 2018

Athletes surmounted immigration, mental health challenges and more, to prove dedication to their sport

It was a triumphant year for B.C. athletes on the provincial, national and global stage. They not only reached for greatness through different disciplines, but also overcame their own personal barriers.

British Columbians overcame political obstacles to represent their country. British Columbians demonstrated dedication and honour to a sport they have devoted their entire life to. They proved through sport, that greatness will not be impeded. These are the most inspirational sports stories from around the province in 2018.

Comox’s golden girl

Comox freestyle skier Cassie Sharpe, 26, made her hometown proud when she won gold at the 2018 Pyeonchang Olympics in the ladies half pipe. Read more >

Whalley’s Little League World Series run ends in loss to Puerto Rico

With plenty of drama on and off the diamond, Whalley Little League represented Canada proudly at the Little League World Series. The baseball world watched as Dio Gama, one of the squad’s best young players, was initially prevented from joining his teammates in Pennsylvania due to immigration issues. Read more >

Paralympic dream for rider with cerebral palsy

Kim Scott was given a two percent chance of survival. Now, the Victoria-native para equestrian has her eyes set to represent Canada at the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo. “I can go anywhere I want to go and not worry about falling down or tripping or getting tired. The horses really are my legs some days.” Read more >

Ucluelet cheers Special Olympic gold medalist

As Ucluelet’s first Special Olympic athlete to compete at the national event, Maxtin Lengyel was greeted with cheers, hugs and high fives as he returned home as a gold medalist in the 200-metre race. Read more >

NHL official from Penticton celebrates 2,000th NHL regular season game

Shane Heyer admits “it’s been a fun journey” after 30 years, millions of air miles and 2,000 NHL regular season games wearing the stripes. Read more >

Blind Ambition: Abbotsford man plays on despite vision disability

Brian Mackie was never picked first growing up, but that has not stopped him from pursuing his passion of hockey. Read more >

Skidegate hosts first Pacific Unity basketball series

From Tonga, Hawai’I, Aoteraoa/New Zealand and Skeena River, youth basketball players landed in Skidegate for the first-ever Pacific Unity U22 Summer Series. Read more >

Sky’s the limit for Stó:lō soccer player Bruce Silver

Silver’s rise through the soccer world wasn’t easy. Teams can be political, and undercurrents of racism still exist. Read more >

Owls QB on historic championship win: ‘We’re a well rounded team’

The Kelowna Secondary School Owls became the first junior varsity football team in the Okanagan to win the provincial championships. Read more >

Fernie Ghostriders welcomed home in front of sold out crowd

The Ghostriders celebrated victory after winning for the first time at the Fernie Memorial Arena after a tragic ammonia leak shut down the arena and struck the community. Read more >

Alberni dominates at home wrestling championships

Nine Alberni District Secondary School wrestlers made it to their respective finals, with three taking home the gold. The wins marked the first time in 20 years that ADSS has won the boys’ provincial banner. Read more >

Engineering technologist earns way to Boston Marathon

The Boston Marathon is the world’s oldest annual marathon and entry is limited. Parksville’s Gordon Chilton he was one of 30,000 runners who qualified. Read more >

Sedin twins wrap up stellar NHL careers

It will be a confusing time in British Columbia, having to cheer on the Vancouver Canucks without Daniel and Henrik Sedin. B.C. fans said tearful goodbyes to the twins earlier this year as they marked their last season. Read more >

Surrey Eagles honour former player, Humboldt Broncos crash victim

Jaxon Joseph played for the Eagles in the 2015-16 season, prior to his death in the horrific bus crash that involved Saskatchewan Junior A team the Humboldt Broncos. Read more >

B.C. veteran uses boxing, coaching and farming to combat PTSD

After returning from Afghanistan, Quesnel’s Cam Tetrault found solace in farming. Oftentimes, Tetrault would skip from the farm to the gym, as he said the gym “really helped me with my PTSD to be accepted and it’s motivating to be there.” Read more >


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YEAR 2018

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The Sparwood Golf Club received $1,206.12 for a lighting project as part of its wider renewal efforts. (Image contributed by Columbia Foundation of the Kootenay Rockies)
CFKR allocates over $11,000 to Elk Valley community programs

Over $50,000 was dished out between the communities of the Kootenay Rockies

RDEK is calling for nominations for their Volunteer of the Year award in all six electoral districts.
RDEK posts operating surplus as pandemic reduces costs

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North Okanagan business Hytec Kohler set up a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Spallumcheen plant Friday, May 14. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
More than half of eligible adults in Interior Health vaccinated

Over 365,000 vaccine doses have been administered throughout the Interior Health region

Fernie Ghostriders head coach Jeff Wagner has committed to two more years with the team. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press
Fernie Ghostriders coach departs: Wagner moves to Coquitlam

Jeff Wagner will move to the Lower Mainland as associate coach and director of scouting with the Coquitlam Express

New Border Bruins owner Dr. Mark Szynkaruk reps team colours with his young sons and wife Tracey. Photo courtesy of the Grand Forks Border Bruins
KIJHL’s Border Bruins sold to Grand Forks doctor

The league announced the sale Friday, May 14

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Vancouver Canucks’ Jake Virtanen (18) and Calgary Flames’ Josh Leivo, front right, vie for the puck as goalie Jacob Markstrom, back left, watches during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Saturday, February 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver Canucks forward Jake Virtanen sued over alleged sexual assault

Statement of claim says the woman, identified only by her initials, suffered physical and emotional damages

An avalanche near Highway 1 in Glacier National Park. Avalanche Canada will benefit from a $10 million grant from the B.C. government. (Photo by Parks Canada)
Avalanche Canada receives $10-million grant from B.C. government

Long sought-after funds to bolster organization’s important work

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

(Kamloops This Week)
Puppy’s home in question as BC Supreme Court considers canine clash

Justice Joel Groves granted an injunction prohibiting the sale or transfer of the dog

Kayak the humpback whale was found dead on a Haida Gwaii beach on Saturday, May 15, 2021. (Marine Education and Research Society)
Kayak the humpback whale found dead on Haida Gwaii beach

Whale was estimated to be only 18 years old

Then-finance minister Kevin Falcon presents his last B.C. budget, Feb. 21, 2012. The province was emerging from the 2009-10 recession and repaying federal incentive to cancel the harmonized sales tax. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
Political veteran Kevin Falcon set for second run at B.C. Liberal leadership

Vancouver MLA Michael Lee announces on the same day

Conservation Service Officer Kyle Bueckert holds a gold eagle that was revived from acute rodent poisoning Monday, May 12. Photo: Submitted
‘Obviously, he’s a fighter’: Golden eagle, recovered from poisoning, back in Kootenay wild

CSO Kyle Bueckert released the eagle into the wild Thursday, May 13

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