15 local athletes set to compete at Western Canada Games

A group of Central Alberta athletes are set to suit up against the top competitors in Western Canada.

Friday marked the official start of the Western Canada Games, in Swift Current, Sask.

A total of 418 athletes and coaches from Alberta are competing in 16 different sports against Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut.

Over 1,700 athletes, coaches, officials and mission staff will be in Swift Current for the week-long event. Athletes between the ages of 13-20 compete at the Games, as well as paralympic and Speical Olympics athletes.

Only the soccer competition opened Friday, with a full slate of events set to start on Saturday. The games continue until Aug. 18.

Toni Gill of Red Deer is the lone Central Albertan representing on the soccer field.

Red Deer’s McKenna Cowan along with Paige Simpson of Red Deer County are on the female softball team. They start play on Saturday against Manitoba. Taylor McDougall of Red Deer is helping coach the squad.

Dwayne Lalor and Jason Chatwood are coaching the Alberta baseball contingent, with Red Deer’s Levi Simpson as the area’s lone representative.

Spencer Purdie of Red Deer County and Red Deer’s Luke Weddell will play indoor volleyball at the games. Colby Nemeth is representing the team in beach volleyball.

Murray Duncan, Elle Couture and Sylvan Lake’s Isaac Bahler hit the pool for Alberta starting on Sunday. Sylvan Lake’s Brandt Seland will play on the male softball team.

Red Deer’s Marissa Richards is on the female basketball team.

On the golf course, Cole Bergheim of Red Deer and Red Deer County’s Alex Gerrard will compete. The golf tournament starts on Aug. 16.

Wrapping up the local contingent is Mika Eggink, competing in triathlon starting next Thursday.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

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