East Central Alberta was well represented during the 2018 Alberta Summer Games held in Grande Prairie from July 19 to 22.
Tristen Shaw (16), from Coronation, stole the show for her softball skills after she and her team went to a number of tournaments including the summer games and nationals in Delaware. Shaw and her team won gold at the summer games in July.
“It was amazing. We all got so close during that time. We made so many new friends and met everyone from different zones and played our hearts out and came home with the gold,” said Shaw.
Devon and JD Johnson of Halkirk as well as Morgyn Jordahl of Castor competed in softball and placed first alongside Shaw.
The Alberta Summer Games were spread out around the entire city of Grande Prairie as each sport required different venues or facilities.
Most of the events were cancelled or postponed due to rain but Shaw’s team was able to avoid any major downpour.
“We were lucky though because the rain like went around our games. We were super lucky. We got one rain delay throughout the whole tournament,” said Shaw.
The team that Shaw played with before at the summer games also won silver at Nationals in Calgary last year.
Shaw has been playing softball ‘for as long as I can remember’ and rotated between pitcher and other positions depending on which team she was playing with.
The Elnora Eagles, the team Shaw played with at nationals, hosted the smaller tournament on the weekend of July 28. They played against a Saskatchewan team and a team based out of Ponoka.
The Eagles soared to victory after defeating the Saskatchewan team 4 – 3.
“It was a really close game. We had played them earlier on in the tournament and we actually mercied them so we came in thinking that we had the game but they showed us that we had to earn it. We played our best game and so did they. It just happened to go in our favour.”
The team had one day of rest before flying out to Delaware for the World Series which was spread over 10 days.
“We played really good and all but it didn’t go in our favour. We didn’t really win a game,” Shaw laughed. “We had really close games though. We got experience to last a lifetime.”
Overall, Shaw was elated to experience so many different tournaments in her young softball career.
“Meeting all the different teams and all the different players because like for summer games they are from Alberta but when you get to Worlds I was meeting people from Hawaii and Puerto Rico and all over,” said Shaw.
The Elnora Eagles already have their sights set on attending nationals and potentially the world series next year.
For the Summer Games, Zone 4 is a combination of towns and cities including Red Deer, Wetaskiwin, Sherwood Park, Rocky Mountain House, Stettler, Clive, Coronation, Elnora, Halkirk, Lacombe, Sylvan Lake and more.
Participants numbered 625 from these areas.
For baseball, Adam Golby of Coronation played on the Zone 4 team where they placed fifth in the tournament.
Gordon Johnson from Stettler played on the men’s soccer team. They placed seventh overall.
Zach Schilling of Halkirk was the single athlete who played basketball in the area and won third place.
Terrence Johnson of Sedgewick played Lacrosse, ultimately winning fifth place with his Zone 4 team.
Riley Jackson of Lousana competed in the track and field athletics category where he placed third in both the 15 & Under Male 4 x 100 Metre Relay and 15 & Under Male Medley Relay.
Ashley Lang of Gadsby played soccer where her team placed sixth.
Stettler’s Devon Mappin and Luke Martin played football as well as Dexter Connell of Delburne, Carson Mottus of Erskine, and Kieran Sherman of Forestburg. Their team placed fourth.
Clive also supplied one athlete to football which was Cole Lardner and a swimmer named Jaden Debruijn.
Debrujin placed first in both the Male 200 metre Breaststroke, and 100 Male Ind Medley, second in Male 200 Freestyle, Male 200 Ind Medley, and the Male 50 Breaststroke. He also placed third in the Male 100 Breaststroke and Male 14-15 4×50 metre freestyle relay.
Drumheller had a strong presence at the games, supplying seven skilled athletes to Zone 2.
Ava Harrington of Drumheller became a force to be reckoned with after placing strictly first and second in all eight of her swimming competitions including the Category 3 and 4 Female 4 x 50 Medley Relay, Female 100 Free, Female 200 Free, Female 200 Ind Medley, Female 400 Free, Female 50 Fly, Female 50 Free and Female 12-13 4x50m Freestyle Relay.
Gavin Armstrong played on the bronze medal football team. Angela Gill, Randi Gill, Tenlee Jensen, Brooklyn Lutz, Ciena Sands, and Gabrielle Thomson played on the girl’s softball team which placed fourth.
Jackie Aellen and Molly Aellen of Elnora played on the female ruby team which placed fifth.
Zone 4 claimed 28 gold medals, 42 silver medals and 49 bronze medals while Zone 2 claimed 48 gold medals, 47 silver medals, and 38 bronze medals.