Weekend Roundup: Melissa & Brandie win breakthrough bronze, four medal super final for artistic swimmers
It was a weekend to remember for many Team Canada athletes.
In just their third Beach Pro Tour event together, Melissa Humana-Parades and Brandie Wilkerson got the podium breakthrough they’ve been looking for. Canadian artistic swimmers mounted the podium four times at the World Cup Super Final in Spain. Meanwhile, Eleanor Harvey earned her way back onto a World Cup podium for the first time in over a year.
Here’s a look at what else you might have missed:
Beach Volleyball: Bronze for Humana-Paredes and Wilkerson
Melissa Humana-Paredes and Brandie Wilkerson earned the best international result of their still-new partnership as they finished in third place at the Beach Pro Tour Elite16 event in Ostrava, Czechia. It was just their third Beach Pro Tour event since announcing they would be joining forces in late October. They were quarterfinalists in Doha, Qatar and Tepic, Mexico in February and March.
The Canadian duo had to win two matches to qualify for the main draw of the tournament. They didn’t drop a set during pool play, earning them advancement directly into the quarterfinals. After getting a 2-1 victory, they suffered their only loss against Americans Terese Cannon and Sarah Sponcil. They rebounded with a straight sets (21-16, 21-14) victory against the Swiss team of Nina Brunner and Tanja Hüberli in Sunday’s third-place game.
Artistic Swimming: Four medal haul at World Cup Super Final
Canadian artistic swimmers finished with four medals at the World Aquatics Artistic Swimming World Cup Super Final in Oviedo, Spain. They capped off the weekend with silver in the acrobatic team event on Sunday. That followed their bronze medal in the mixed team free event on Saturday. They had finished fourth in the mixed team technical, missing the podium by six-tenths of a point.
Audrey Lamothe reached the podium in both women’s solo events as the 18-year-old took bronze in the technical and free programs. The solo is not among the artistic swimming events included at the Olympic Games.
Fencing: Harvey wins third career World Cup medal
Eleanor Harvey captured a bronze medal in the women’s individual foil event at the FIE World Cup in Tbilisi, Georgia. This is the 28-year-old’s third career World Cup medal. She last stood on a World Cup podium in February 2022. Ranked sixth in the world, Harvey was defeated 15-12 by Germany’s Anne Sauer in their semifinal. Sauer had taken down world number one Lee Kiefer of the United States in the quarterfinals.
Athletics: Brown runs to another Diamond League bronze
Aaron Brown ran to his second bronze medal in Diamond League competition this season. He finished third in the 200m at the Golden Gala in Florence, Italy on Friday in a time of 20.31 seconds, one of his slower races of the year. He had also placed third in Doha, Qatar in early May. On Sunday, Brown was sixth in the 100m at the FBK Games in Hengelo, Netherlands in a time of 10.15 seconds.
The Golden Gala marked Gabriela DeBues-Stafford‘s return to major international competition for the first time in over a year. She finished 12th in a 1500m race in which Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon broke the world record with her winning time of 3:49.11. DeBues-Stafford had to shut down last season in mid-June because of injury.
Equestrian: Canada strikes Nations Cup silver at home
Team Canada finished second at the FEI Jumping Nations Cup in Langley, B.C. on Sunday. Tiffany Foster (Hamilton), Erynn Ballard (Gakhir), Mario Deslauriers (Emerson), and Amy Millar (Truman) counted just eight penalties in the two rounds of the team final to place behind Ireland.
“Any day on the podium is a good day,” said Chef d’Equipe Ian Millar. “It wouldn’t be a Nations Cup if there weren’t some surprises. This is the nature of the sport and we put in a great effort today.”
Unfortunately, Canada was unable to bump the United States or Mexico out of the top two spots in the overall standings for the North and Central America & Caribbean region. Those two teams will qualify for the FEI Jumping Nations Cup Final in late September.
3×3 Basketball: Team Canada geared up for what comes next
It wasn’t the finish they envisioned at the FIBA 3×3 World Cup in Vienna, Austria. Canada’s women’s squad of Katherine Plouffe, Michelle Plouffe, Paige Crozon, and Kacie Bosch fell 14-13 to France in the quarterfinals to place sixth overall. It was the same quartet that had defeated Canada in the final of the 2022 tournament.
The Canadians had earned a bye directly in the quarterfinals after finishing atop Group C with three wins in the preliminary round. Now they’ll turn their focus to the FIBA 3×3 Women’s Series that will take place all around the world this summer. Canada won the Women’s Series Final in 2022.
Badminton: Li makes second straight quarterfinal appearance
Michelle Li was a quarterfinalist at the BWF World Tour Super 500 tournament in Bangkok, Thailand. It was in the final eight that she ran into a tough opponent in Spain’s Carolina Marin, who is ranked sixth in the world.
It was the second straight BWF World Tour Super 500 tournament at which Li had advanced to the quarterfinals. Just a week earlier, she had done the same in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.