Ballenas athletes still competing

Sporting event held despite teachers' labour strife

While the playoffs for most of those high school sports still running have been cancelled, track and field held its North Island championships April 28 at the Nanaimo Rotary Bowl under wet and windy conditions.

The event was officially hosted by the Campbell River Christian School, “but due to the teacher job action there were far fewer schools and competitors,” said longtime Oceanside Track and Field Association coach Kim Longmuir, pointing out her and her co-coach (and husband), Randy, “had 10 Ballenas athletes compete, with excellent results.”

Excellent is right — all 10 of the Whalers in attendance qualified to compete in the Vancouver Island High School Championship slated for May 16, 17 in Victoria.

At this time, that event is a go, said Kim, explaining schools were only allowed to compete if they had a community coach or school administrative staff accompany the team.

“Randy and I,” Kim pointed out, “have been fully supported and appreciated by the Ballenas School staff and administration in the six years we have coached the school track and field team.”

At the North Islands, both the bantams and juniors had to finish top five in their respective events to advance to Islands. Senior athletes only had to participate in one event to move on.

Exceptional results she said were turned in by Grade 9 Kabir Bellerose, who in addition to trying to qualify as an invitational athlete for the BC Provincial meet, June 2-3, is also focused on making the BC Summer Games’ team competing in Surrey, July 19-22.

Also earning props for his efforts was Marco Viedas. An outstanding taekwondo athlete new to track and field this year, he competed in his first two races ever, placing third and fourth.

According to Kim, in Port Alberni at the Bob Dailey Meet, Marco dropped his 800m time to 2:07, “so we are excited to see where his determination and mental toughness will take him the rest of the season.”

The team is missing outstanding track and field competitor, Chelsea Hoey this year, due to her recent knee surgery, “but Ballenas has a solid and hard-working team going into Islands.”




• Gr. 9 Kabir Bellerose had a strong showing for BSS at the North Islands in the Bantam Boys division; taking first in the 300m Hurdles with a time of 43.78, second in the 200m at 25.51 and third in the 100m at 12.63.



• Gr. 10 Anya Bradbury qualified with fourth place finishes in the 100m (14.62) and 200m (30.50) in Jr. Girls.



• In Sr. Girls action, Gr. 11 standouts Caitlinn Jenkins and Taylor Chestnut both grabbed gold — Jenkins finished first in the 1500m racewalk with a time of 8:49.62, and Chestnut was first over in the 400m at 67.99.



• In Sr. Boys, BSS Gr. 12s Marco Viedas was third in the 800m at 2:15.58 and fourth in the 400m at 56.10; Jacob Klassen sixth in the 400m (57.29), Jackson Collette fourth in the 800m at 2:18.25 and John Bang was fifth in the 800m at 2:20.48.



• The Gr. 11s were also in the mix — Colson Schneider was sixth in the 800m at 2:22.74, and Daniel Stewart earned first in Shotput with a 10.68 and 3rd in Discus at 24.87.


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