Nicolas Garfias of Abbotsford went on a gold rush at the Western Canada Summer Games in Kamloops last week, winning five individual titles in men’s gymnastics.
Garfias, B.C.’s outstanding high performance gymnast in 2010, was the all-around champ, and finished first on the parallel bars, high bar, pommel horse and floor. He and fellow Abbotsford gymnast Andrew Schmidt also helped B.C. to gold in the team competition.
Garfias’s podium blitz highlighted a tremendous collective effort by Abbotsford athletes at the Games – all 18 locals in attendance brought home at least one medal.
On the wrestling mat, all five local grapplers made it to the final in their respective weight classes. Joban Phulka (76 kg), Matthew Dignan (54 kg) and Rajan Gill (85 kg) won gold, while Navdeep Dhillon (42 kg) and Amanveer Kaler (58 kg) won silver. B.C. also won the team title.
In track and field, Tiffany Perkins won the women’s javelin by a huge margin – her best throw of 49.95 metres was more than seven metres better than her closest competitor. Aisha Klippenstein won the triple jump (11.53m), and was seventh in the 100m hurdles.
A trio of Abbotsford athletes – Spencer Miller, Graham Hawkins and Spencer Loughlin – led B.C. on a dominant run in the under-16 rugby sevens tournament. B.C. allowed just 12 points over five games, capped by a 41-5 win over Saskatchewan in the final. Miller came up huge in the gold medal game, scoring four tries.
The B.C. women’s softball entry, featuring Abbotsford Outlaws teammates Taylor Lundrigan, Alexis Johnston and Chelsea Jenner, won gold. Lundrigan was outstanding in the final against Manitoba, going 3-for-3 at the plate to spark an 8-1 win. Tyler Klassen helped the B.C. men’s softball team to a bronze medal.
On the tennis courts, Rosie Johanson won women’s doubles gold with partner Alexis Prokopiuk, trouncing Alberta in the final (6-1, 6-0).
Tyler Koslowsky and the B.C. men’s volleyball team finished third, beating Saskatchewan in the bronze medal game (25-13, 25-18, 25-17).
The Western Canada Summer Games brought together athletes from B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. B.C. topped the medal standings with 261, edging Alberta’s 232.
Abbotsford hosted the Western Games in 1995.