September 27, 2004
Canada bounces back for bronze in women’s
ATHENS - The Canadian women’s wheelchair basketball team
put aside its disappointment at not making the final and won the
bronze medal on Monday with a 63-47 victory over Germany at the
Chantal Benoit of Orleans, Ont., Canada’s flag bearer in
the opening ceremonies, led the offence with 19 points. Linda Kutrowski
of Ottawa and Sabrina Pettinicchi of Montreal added 12 each. Benoit
and Kutrowski completed their sixth Paralympics and were part of
the Canadian teams that won gold at the last three Games.
“We were very depressed after losing to the Americans in
the semis,” said Benoit. “But we got ourselves back
together and told ourselves we’re going to show everybody
how good we are in this game. Still it’s hard to watch the
gold medal game now and not be in it. But that’s sport.”
“All the teams came here to play,” added Kutrowski.
“In this kind of competition, one is not allowed to make any
mistakes. We made some and it cost us. Fortunately, we made our
comeback and had a strong finish. We have the Gold Cup in 2006 and
a big challenge to get back on top.”
In the women’s road combined for visually impaired Shawn
Marsolais of New Westminster, B.C., and her pilot Lisa Sweeney of
Langley, B.C., were seventh overall.
“We’re a little disappointed we missed the top half
of the field by one spot,” said Marsolais. “It’s
pretty clear this week that we need to work on our speed. But for
my first Games it’s good to know that I’m near the middle
of the field.”
Sweeney is a competitive rider who hooked up with Marsolais last
year. “Going to the Paralympics has changed my life,”
she said. “It’s a real inspiration to see these people
tackle life’s challenges head on. Everybody has an incredible
Based on gold medals, Canada has climbed to an impressive third
in the medal standing with 27 gold, 19 silver and 24 bronze for
70 overall. The Games end on Tuesday. Canada plays Australia in
the men’s wheelchair basketball final while Gauthier and Kabush
will also vie for a medal.
What Canada did
B1-3 tandem road and time trial combined: 7. Shawn Marsolais, New
Westminster, B.C., and Lisa Sweeney, Langley, B.C., 2:06:56.
S13 50 freestyle: 1. Kirby Cote, Winnipeg, 28.47; 3. Chelsey Gotell,
Antigonish, N.S., 29.00; 9. Rhea Schmidt, Winnipeg, 30.66.
4X100 medley relay
TRACK AND FIELD
T54 200 final : 1. Chantal Petitclerc, Montreal, 28.95; 5. Jessica
Matassa, Windsor, Ont., 30.93.
Bronze medal game: Canada 63-Germany 47. Canada wins bronze.
reprinted with permission