Championships Wrap-Up with Team and Pairs Medalists Crowned
London, ON (November 24, 2022) – The 2022 Canadian Championships wrapped-up this past weekend at the North London Optimist Community Centre after an action-packed four days of competition, with the Team and Pairs Champions crowned.
The BC1/BC2 Team event came down to the slimmest of margins and was won by Team Ontario based on point differential after a three-way tie for first with Newfoundland and Labrador and Québec.
Ontarian BC1 athlete and member of Boccia Canada’s National Team, Lance Cryderman (Sudbury, ON), was proud of the efforts of his teammates Jim Davis (Thorold, ON), Kyle Scott (Hamilton, ON), and Maggie Julien (Sudbury, ON): “Maggie made some critical shots throughout the tournament to help our team secure the gold medal and this cannot be understated. In addition, newcomer Kyle Scott showed tremendous team spirit and support throughout the three games… To win the team competition in our home province was extra special. We all made a contribution to the win. It was a total team effort.” Similar to Cryderman, long-time Ontario team member Davis contributed key shots to the overall efforts of the group.
In BC3 Pairs, Team Québec 1 secured the gold with Ontario/Alberta taking silver and Québec 2 the bronze.
Éric Bussière (Verchères, QC) and National Team member Joëlle Guérette (Montréal, QC) swept the round robin to take gold in BC3 which means that Bussière leaves the competition with two more golds to add to his stash of medals over the course of his career.
“Winning two gold medals in the individual and pairs event gave me confidence. It’s not necessarily just the medals but our style of play which is still competitive and at a high level… My favorite part of the Championships was playing pairs with Joelle and her ramp operator Jonathan… I am happy to have won the pairs gold with them. It brings us full circle,” said Bussière.
Bussière and his performance partner, Francine Hébert, announced recently that they would step away from the National Team for the time being after a productive history of competing and winning medals at the international level for almost a decade.
In Mixed BC4/BC5/Open Pairs Daniel Hutchison (Victoria, BC) and Alison McKee (London, ON) came in first, with Giovanni De Sero (Guelph, ON) and Marc-Antoine Goupil (Honfleur, QC) behind them, and then British Columbia came in third.
“I am actually quite thrilled and excited for coming in first in Pairs play. It’s actually my first medal at Nationals and I’m hoping to stay at this level and move up in individual play as well,” said McKee whose teammate Hutchison won gold in the BC5/Open category of the individual event. This is McKee’s first Canadian Championships. She was selected as a wild card athlete along with her teammate, Hutchison.
“Now, I’m going to probably recoup from Nationals because it’s been quite an eventful time and it’s a lot of playing. I’m going to go back to practicing three days a week at least three hours each time and then we’ll go to the [Ontario Parasport Games] in Whitby next,” says McKee.
The BC5 and Open division is not currently offered on the international World Boccia circuit, however, Boccia Canada has included the classification for many years as part of the competitive program, as do other countries as well.
“I am hoping that, in time, we can compete internationally. In the meantime, we want to get junior divisions around Ontario for the younger generations so that when us older folks get tired of playing, our legacy can continue,” explains McKee. “Maybe you’ll see some of us ref or coach. Anything’s possible!”
Boccia is a sport for anyone and everyone. You can get involved as an athlete, coach, official, volunteer, or other ways through Boccia Canada here.
Watch the livestream of the Team and Pairs medals ceremony here.
Find full results from the competition here.
Gold: Jim Davis (Thorold, ON), Kyle Scott (Hamilton, ON), Lance Cryderman (Sudbury, ON), & Maggie Julien (Sudbury, ON)
Silver: Kristyn Collins (St. John’s, NL), Lois Martin (St. John’s, NL), & Olivier Dussault (Québec City, QC)
Bronze: Danik Allard (Bois-des-Filion, QC), Dave Richer (Montréal, QC), Justine Bureau (Lévis, QC), & Olivier Roy (Québec City, QC)
Gold: Éric Bussière (Verchères, QC); Ass’t: Francine Hébert & Joëlle Guérette (Montréal, QC); Ass’t: Jonathan Manseau
Silver: Josh Gautier (Niagara Falls, ON); Ass’t: Joyce Gautier & Ryan Rondeau (Edmonton, AB); Ass’t: Meghan Lewis
Bronze: Alexandre Lemaire (Kingsey Falls, QC); Ass’t: Francis Lemaire & Marylou Martineau (Québec City, QC); Ass’t: Josée Duquette
Mixed BC4/BC5/Open Pairs
Gold: Alison McKee (London, ON) & Daniel Hutchison (Victoria, BC)
Silver: Giovanni De Sero (Guelph, ON) & Marc-Antoine Goupil (Honfleur, QC)
Third: Mildred Thomas (Surrey, BC) & Rene Poirier (Victoria, BC)
About Boccia Canada
Boccia Canada is the boccia delivery arm of the Canadian Cerebral Palsy Sports Association (CCPSA), the National Sport Organization for the Paralympic sport of boccia. Boccia Canada is focused on providing athletes and individuals of all ages and skill with the chance to play a unique Paralympic sport. CCPSA collaborates with partners to increase the participation of Canadians with cerebral palsy and related disabilities in sport and physical activity, while leading, developing and growing boccia from grassroots, to producing World and Paralympic Champions.
Boccia is a Paralympic sport of precision and strategy similar to lawn bowling or curling, played by athletes with Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, and related disabilities. It is one of only two Paralympic sports that do not have an Olympic counterpart. Athletes compete in one of six sport classes based on their level and type of disability: BC1, BC2, BC3, BC4, BC5, and Open. For more information on boccia, visit www.bocciacanada.ca.