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Sunday, Jun. 16, 2019
Mastroianni medals and locals show well in London
by Randy Pascal

Historically, the Ontario Summer Games have not been particularly kind to northern Ontario entries, particularly in the team sports.

Perhaps 2018 will be different.

The early signs, on at least a couple of fronts, have been encouraging. At the same time, locals have claimed their first medal of the game, courtesy of multi-sport athlete Bella Mastroianni.

A provincial caliber swimmer as a member of the SLSC (Sudbury Laurentian Swim Club), the St Benedict Catholic Secondary School senior placed third in a field of 23 triathletes on Friday, posting a time of 54:06.

Representing Sudbury Triple Threat Triathlon Club this summer in the Ontario Cup circuit, Mastroianni was roughly one minute back of silver medal winner Ava Snyder (53:05), and 14 seconds better than Aliyah Capon in fourth.

Former Sudbury resident Emily Dodge came across the finish line in 7th place (56:37), while Valley East native Aiden MacKenzie met his goal of a top ten placement in the boys race, slotted into 7th with a time of 51:11. Elliot Lake native Alex Lambert, who trained locally for a few years, narrowly missed out on a medal, finishing fourth (48:40).

On the baseball diamonds, coach Brodie Jeffery and Team North emerged unscathed after day one competition, whitewashing WCBA (Western Counties Baseball Association) 8-0 in their opening game and pulling out a key 3-2 win over SCBA (Southern Counties Baseball Association) later in the day.

A 2-0 record was also posted by the Team North boys basketball crew, starting things off with a 58-51 triumph over the Capital Region (Ottawa). Ethan Scott paced the attack for the winners with 15 points, with Charlie Hennessy adding nine.

After opening up an early lead (14-8), the North found themselves trailing by nine before half. "The high energy play of Michael Travers and Ritchie Daley, who came into the game in the third (quarter), really gave the team a boost," noted head coach Mitchell Mazzuca.

Closing out the evening against Huron Region, Team North made it back to back victories, outscoring their opponents 57-35, with Scott (21 pts) and Hennessy (15) again showing the way in the scoring parade.

We're not sure what speech coach Mazzuca used at half-time, but it certainly did the trick, his team posting a 37-9 second half run after trailing 26-20 at the break. "The team fought through some adversity once again and continued to show growth with each and every game," said Mazzuca. "Zack Chamberland came off the bench to play some huge minutes in the second half for us."

Over at the Thames Valley Golf & Country Club, a pair of local competitors are looking to work their way up the charts on day two. Matthew Matheson fired an eight over par round of 78, leaving him tied with six other golfers in 24th place (53 entries in all), with leader Curtis Hughes opening up a four shot advantage with a three under par round of 67.

On the girls side, Lea Lemieux, likely far and away the youngest entry in her field at just 13 years of age, is chalking her first Games appearance up to experience, battling the course in London with a score of 105.

Luukas Ovaska certainly did not appear the least bit intimidated, competing in his first "Eliminator" race. The Walden Mountain Bike Club Wolfpak Racing team member placed fifth in a field of 35 cyclists, covering the 1.17 km sprint in a time of 2:48.

He matched that performance with a fifth place finish in the cross-country event (21.84 kms - 1:07.18), only slightly further back in the short track distance (7th place - 11.22 kms - 29:16).

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