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Friday, Aug. 17, 2018
Missing Spartans kicker proves costly - in 1996!
2018-07-24
by Randy Pascal

A kicker, in football, can sometimes go unnoticed. Not the case on Saturday, as Richard Eldridge of the Sudbury Spartans was out of town with a family wedding. In his absence, the local NFC squad missed a convert, had a field goal blocked and failed to convert on a rouge as time expired, all in the process of dropping a 14-13 decision to the visiting Oakville Longhorns.

Trailing 11-0, the Spartans closed the gap in the second quarter when quarterback Paul Gauthier sailed a 69 yard bomb directly into the waiting hands of Dave St Amour, with Mika Kinos making good on his first extra point attempt of the game. Following a fumble recovery in Oakville territory, coach Gary Ricker's troops marched down to the goal-line, running back Jason Morrison punching it home from the two yard line.

A forty yard fourth quarter field goal by the Longhorns Mike Jackson would provide the eventual game-winning points, as a last ditch 40 yard punt, by the Spartans, rolled about five yards short of its intended destination as time expired. The Longhorns improved to 5-1 on the season with the win while Sudbury fell to 2-5.

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Terry Boese of Kitchener covered the Friendly Marathon in Massey in a time of 2:37.48, posting a comfortable victory over Bill Cunliff of Courtice (2:45.52). The race for second was much tighter as John Remington of East York sprinted through seven seconds back of Cunliff.

Showing the way in the female division were Lisa Burrows (3:28.57), Leslie De Abreu (3:31.32) and Dorothy Peters (3:33.24), while the top local finisher was Karen Cowling of Hanmer, who took top spot in the women's half marathon.

Honours in the men's half marathon were doled out to Richard Kalbheen of Mississauga (1:19.06), with Patrick MacDonald of Sudbury just 17 seconds back. The race would draw almost 200 entries, including 110 in the full marathon alone.

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Lo-Ellen Park hurdler Sarah Junkin earned a berth at the National Royal Canadian Legion Track and Field Championships in Sherbrooke, capturing gold in the U17 Girls 80m hurdles (12.52) at provincials in Brantford, and finishing fourth in the 100m hurdles (12.79).

Junkin will represent Ontario in both the hurdles, as well as the pentathlon. Track North Athletic Club teammate Ryan Bradshaw also captured gold, placing first in the U17 Boys 1500m steeplechase, registering a personal best time of 4:31.50 in the event.

In fact, Bradshaw would lead a 1-2 Track North punch as Stephen Eles claimed silver with a time of 4:37.80. Other local finalists of note included:

Christie Smith - 3000m - 4th - 11:10.22
Tom Salmoni - 800m - 4th - 2:00.25
Mike Fairman - 400m - 4th - 52.24
Phil Doiron - 400m hurdles - 5th - 58.0
Katie Junkin - 300m hurdles - 6th - 51.70
Serena Jennings - 800m - 7th - 2:30.70
Ryan Saunders - 400m - 7th - 54.50

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Ron Silver Jr was thrilled to keep the family tradition alive at the Idylwylde Invitational. In downing defending champion Ian MacDonald 3 and 2 and taking home the Inco Limited Trophy for the first time, Silver has followed in the footsteps of his uncle, Fred, a five time event champion (1970, 1975, 1976, 1979, 1981).

Another uncle, Mike, is also on the list of winners, his triumph dating back to 1971. On his way to the title, Silver Jr eliminated Mars Melander, Vincent Taylor and Brian Savage, in the semis, while MacDonald took care of business against Sean Koch, Paul Maynard and Bruce Helbig, respectively.

MacDonald qualified comfortably for championship flight on Friday, carding a 70, a score matched only by Savage. Rounding out the bracket of 16 were Brendan Webb (71), Gord Ouimet and Melander at 72, Mark McCulloch (73), with a quartet a Jason Aucoin, Ted Hreljac, Maynard and Jim McNeil all at 74 and Cory Jones, Chris Kertsos, Helbig, Koch, Silver Jr and Taylor closing things off at 75.

For the first time in a long time, no playoff round was needed to even things out at sixteen. Playing the event for the 16th time, Ouimet cracked the top grouping for the very first time, am absolute thrill for the long-time coach of the Elliot Lake Vikings.

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Local cross-country skier Pirkko Penttila has been selected as one of only three junior aged women who will begin a training camp in Canmore (Alberta) at the end of July. At 17 years of age, she was selected last year to attend the Pierre Harvey camp in Quebec, open to some of the top skiers in the country.

She would follow that up this past winter with a gold medal performance at OFSAA, representing the Lockerby Vikings. Penttila is contemplating remaining in Canmore beyond the camp, giving herself a better opportunity at reaching the standard for the World Junior Championships, in addition to aiding her long-term goals in the sport.

"Cross-country skiers are like marathon runners," she said. "They take years and years to develop. It's not like gymnastics where you go to the Olympics when you are fourteen."

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Riding in his very first mountain bike race of the year, Tim Heale made the most of it, earning top spot in the 25-kilometre Mountain Bike Challenge at Laurentian University. Heale covered the course in 47:47, close to four minutes ahead of Andrew Safranski, with local cyclist Ryan Spencer another minute behind.

"This is really a surprise," said Heale. "I wasn't too sure I could do this." Meanwhile, Naomi McLees took the women's division, with Brad Hayward, Ron Belair and Max Champagne showing the way in the 10-kilometre event. Andrea Mesjarik was the top female in the same distance.

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