Spencer Gamache carefully lines up a shot at Westerner Park in Red Deer. Submitted photo

Quesnel archer wins silver at Canada Winter Games

Spencer Gamache, 18, won the hardware in the Individual Male Compound category

Quesnel River Archers member Spencer Gamache won a silver medal in archery for British Columbia at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer, Alberta

While the 18-year-old sharpshooter played the middle of the pack in the qualifying rounds (which were held Feb. 26-27), finishing tied for sixth in Round 1 with a score of 560 and tied for fourth in Round 2 with a score of 571, he began putting on a compound bow clinic when it came time for the head-to-heads.

“As the tournament went on, I was able to improve as I do my best when there is pressure and a challenge to be conquered,” says Gamache.

In the preliminaries (Feb. 28), Gamache faced off against Bailey Johnston from the Northwest Territories, beating him by a score of 142 to 119 to move onto the quarter finals.

Gamache found himself in a nail-biter in the round of eight, where he narrowly beat out Dustin Watson from Ontario 144-143.

As the competition was so high, the semi-finals proved just as difficult.

The Quesnel local faced off against one of Quebec’s finest in Matthew Turcotte, where he once again prevailed 141-139.

Unfortunately, that would be the last win of the meet for Gamache, as he was unable to best Austin Taylor from Ontario in the final.

He fell just short, coming out on the wrong side of a 148-141 shoot out.

For Gamache, who has had a lot of success in B.C., winning medals in both the indoor and outdoor provincial championships in the last two years, this was his biggest win on the national stage.

“The tournament was definitely different than other shoots in the sense that when you looked down the line or at the targets, the arrows were all very well shot,” he says.

Gamache adds that he was able to succeed by forcing his mind to think of the event as, “just another shoot.”

While Gamache has only been competing for the last three years, he has 10 years of archery experience and puts in hours at the shooting range three to five times a week to hone his skill.

The talented archer will be looking to continue his upward trajectory at the provincials in Victoria next month.

“I am really looking forward to shooting both my compound and my recurve bows, as well as getting a podium finish in each category,” he says.

READ MORE: Quesnel Indoor 3D shoot draws more than 100 competitors

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