Nelson skiers Kiley Waterfield

Nelson and area athletes headed to BC Winter Games

Keiran Marchand is heading to Mission for the games and will compete in biathlon, something the 14-year-old started doing at age 9.

Several local athletes will get the chance to compete in the BC Winter Games being held February 20 to 23 in Mission.

The BC Games bring together British Columbia’s best emerging high performance athletes, trained coaches, and certified officials for four days of competition. Joining 2,220 participants from around the province are 15 young competitors from Nelson and the surrounding area.

This experience is an important development opportunity and stepping stone towards higher-level sport competitions. The purpose of the BC Games is “To provide an opportunity for the development of athletes, coaches, and officials in preparation for higher levels of competition in a multisport event which promotes interest and participation in sport and sporting activities, individual achievement and community development.”

Keiran Marchand is heading to Mission for the games and will compete in biathlon, something the 14-year-old started doing at age 9 to “bring a new challenge to cross country skiing.”

“I am excited to go to the games because it will be my first big race and I am representing the Kootenays,” he told the Star.

Nelson Jr. Ladies Curling Team consisting of skip Lauren Walgren, third Christina Cutler, and lead Noelle Wang are headed to the games along with second Robyn Flynn from Castlegar.

“All the girls are looking forward to the event,” said assistant coach Karen Walgren.

All under 16-years-old, this is Walgren and Wang’s second time competing at the Winter Games.

Glacier Gymnastics coach Sandra Long said the Nelson club is “very proud” of their athletes heading to the games. Kylee Dyck, Victoria Lawrence-Jeffery, and Ella Keelan of Crescent Valley are competing.

“They have worked very hard for the last few years to prepare for this opportunity,” said Long. “Based on past accomplishments at provincial level competitions, each girl has the possibility of coming home with a medal or two.”

Spencer Pearson-Atkins is competing at the Winter Games in speed skating. The Grade 9 student is just back from competing in Kamloops where he broke the 50 second mark in the 500 metre skate.

“That’s always a good milestone in any skater’s career,” said Daryl Rasmussen who will join Pearson-Atkins at the games as assistant coach.

Competing in the Winter Games does come with more pressure than the regular circuit as the spotlight shines brighter on such events, said Rasmussen.

“He’ll be there gathering experience at a multi-sport competition,” he explained. “We’ve been training hard all year and this is one of our key focuses. I am really happy that he qualified.”

Haley Elias, Reese McCrory and Emma Wheeldon are competing in female hockey.

“I’m definitely nervous but I think it will be an awesome experience, from the high level of hockey to making new friends from different places,” said Wheeldon who plays for the West Kootenay Wildcats. “I’m excited to go and play and see how things turn out.”

Members of the Whitewater Ski Team Liam Jones, Oso Punchard, Cheyenne Stevens and Kiley Waterfield are headed to the games.

Their Whitewater coach Dylan Henderson is also the head coach for the Kootenay Alpine Ski Team. He will be taking 20 athletes from as far away as Invermere to the games.

“Qualifying for the BC Winter Games in Mission is a huge achievement for these athletes,” he said. “Participating in the games is an incredible experience as the event has the feel of the Olympics with 18 sports and over 2000 athletes and coaches attending. For these athletes this will be a very memorable step on their athletic journey.”

This is the 27th BC Winter Games.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Dramatic video shows return of rescued snowboarders

Two snowboarders found safe near Rossland, B.C.

Nelson bumps up cost of east Blewett fire service

The 20 per cent increase will amount to approximately $56 per year for a $400,000 home

Spike in vehicle thefts from remote parking lots

RCMP investigating a half dozen incidents

Judgment reserved in Nakusp school sex trial

Trial concluded today with lawyer’s summations

New Denver emergency ward to remain 24/7

Interior Health says it’s postponing changes to operating hours.

Testing the Google Arts & Culture app

Going face to face with art

Female goalie from Golden wins first Junior B game

Female goalie believed to be league’s first to play a full game and win

Nelson Leafs lose to Nitehawks on last-minute goal

The game was played to finish a postponed contest in December

CBT to provide 100 new child care spaces

Nelson Waldorf School is also getting money for a roof

Leafs down Border Bruins in penalty-filled game

Logan Wullum stole the show for Nelson in the 4-1 win

SKI TIPS: The key to skiing in heavy powder

Whitewater Ski Team coach Dylan Henderson shows how to navigate powder with ease

Leafs’ five-game winning streak snapped by Nitehawks

Nelson fell 4-1 on the first of three straight games this weekend

The book club master

Nelson’s Hazel Mousley takes book clubs to the next level

Glacier freezes competition in Spokane

The gymnastics club returned home with 35 medals

Most Read