Whitby athletes shine as Team Ontario wins first ever Canada Games box lacrosse gold


Published August 15, 2022 at 1:50 pm

Team Ontario wrote itself into the history books Friday night with a 2-1 win over British Columbia to capture the first gold medal in women’s box lacrosse at the Niagara 2022 Canada Summer Games.

Team Ontario Head Coach Troy Cordingley told the media after the final the young woman on the Ontario team would be “sisters forever” because of the history made in Niagara.

The gold medal was not an easy one as Ontario went 2-1 in the preliminary round before earning wins over Saskatchewan (11-0) and Nova Scotia (7-2) to set up the final against B.C.

The gold medal was no walk in the park either, with 78 shots evenly allotted between the two sides and only a late goal the difference.

The Ontario squad featured Regan Briese, Aisha Hoover and Jenna Smellie of Whitby (Briese and Hoover both listed their hometowns as rural Clarington) and Rylan Haslam of Oshawa. Brooklin’s Rachel McKinnon was one of Team Ontario’s assistant coaches.

Meanwhile the men’s baseball and basketball teams also did their part for Ontario’s medal hauls with both teams taking home gold medals.

The baseball side, which boasted Owen McMulkin of Ajax, Owen Slater of Brooklin and Mac Robertson of Oshawa, also had a tough go in the preliminary round, sporting a 3-3 record before roaring back when it counted, beating Quebec 2-0 in the quarter-final, blasting Saskatchewan 22-4 in the semi-final before an 11-1 win over Alberta in the gold medal game.

The men’s basketball team, meanwhile, were perfect in their quest for gold. The defeated New Brunswick 87-77, Quebec 105-96, Newfoundland & Labrador 99-71 and Nova Scotia 100-98 before winning gold over B.C. 81-70.

Two Durham residents made the team: Hunter Harding of Ajax and Jahari Williamson of Pickering.

Ontario leads the Canada Games standings as of Monday morning with 40 gold and 90 total medals. B.C. is second with 19 gold and 70 medals.

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