Dispatches from Surrey

An update on how our kids did at the B.C. Summer Games.

  • Jul. 24, 2012 12:00 p.m.

Five hour drives for practice? All in a Cariboo day’s work

by Kyle Benning

 

Vaughn Mueller and his squad are at a serious disadvantage at the 2012 BC Summer Games.

The head coach for the Cariboo-North East boys basketball team has had to deal with some serious travel pains in preparation for the Games.

With the Cariboo-North East Zone 8 region spanning from 100 Mile House to Fort Nelson, there is a large gap between some players and the gym they practice at.

His roster can be broken down into players from three different locations – Vanderhoof, Prince George and Quesnel.

The team prepared for the games by practicing in Vanderhoof, which is an hour drive from Prince George, and a two-and-a-half hour drive from Quesnel.

“I think it comes down to if you want to do it, if you’re really committed to it, you’ll do it,” Mueller said.

Mueller comments on coaching his two players from Quesnel, saying that it isn’t easy travelling five hours back-and-forth from practice, but the boys have stayed motivated.

Cole Einseale has given up a lot of time for basketball. The 13-year-old from Quesnel spends his school lunch hours in the gym playing basketball and his evenings finishing his homework.

He carpools with a teammate to and from practice to take the stress off of their parents, who will then not have to worry about driving them to Vanderhoof and back.

“I really like basketball a lot and I want to be a leader on the court,” Einseale said.

Einseale, who began playing organized basketball at the age of nine, enjoys the sport so much that he decided to leave his position playing rep soccer to make more time to improve his basketball skills.

“I was quite impressed by them. Quite often you will see that once you get into the season, you notice that [travelling] weighs on them,” Mueller said. “They are always the first ones there.”

 

Cariboo-NE grabs fourth place in Summer Games baseball

by David Ly

 

Blair Walkey, assistant coach of the Cariboo-North East baseball team (Zone 8) is exceptionally proud of how far his boys have come in the BC Summer Games, even if they didn’t get themselves into the finals. Sharing in his excitement are the boys’ mothers.

“We got a couple of young guys here who are playing their highest level of ball,” Walkey boasted.

Playing their last game of the tournament, Zone 8 was all about giving 100 per cent on the diamond. “[He’s] expecting [his] boys to go out and give one hundred percent. We worked hard to get here,” Walkey said.

And, even though they came out in fourth, the team has no regrets about their games. They said they are simply happy to have experienced the past three days.

“I’m just kind of sad that it’s over, this is my first BC Summer Games,” 12-year-old Devon Craig from Valemont said. One of the newest additions to the team this year, Craig plays right field and is happy his team has gotten so far. Craig’s mother, Melanie Hystad, is grateful the team has been so warm in welcoming her shy 12-year-old to the team.

Celeste Tarasoff, mother of 13-year-old Dylan Savory of Prince George, said her son’s team’s first goal was to get into either the gold or bronze medal final, so it’s no wonder the team still brightly smiles after the games.

“Fourth place is better than zero,” said Tarasoff. “They did well and tried really hard. It’s an experience that many kids don’t get to have.”

 

Soccer player comes around to the game she loves

by Cheyenne Bergenhenegouwen

 

For many female soccer players, they fell in love with soccer from their very first touch of the ball.

For Mikeila Oliveira from the Cariboo-North East team (Zone 8), this was not the case.

“I didn’t like soccer at first, but now I always play,” Oliveira said. “When I’m not playing soccer, I am in the back yard with a ball, when I am not in the back yard I have a soccer ball with me and kick it around the house.”

Oliveira’s passion for soccer has even inspired her to write letters to her soccer idols such as Christine Sinclair and Karina LeBlanc. She has also started earning and saving money through odd jobs in order to buy a ticket to go see Brazilian player Marta Vieira da Silva.

Some players, such as Madeleine Richardson from the Fraser River-Delta team, were surprised more than anything to have made the team. Richardson had doubts when trying out for the Delta team and was very surprised when she got the call confirming she had made it.

With Richardson’s contribution to her Fraser River-Delta team (Zone 4), they made it to the semifinal match that takes place Sunday morning, where they will be facing off against Thompson-Okanagan (Zone 2) for the bronze medal.