Ice Chips and Canoe Quips

Pre-NSSSA blow-outs!

This past Friday, October 15th, Manitoulin Secondary School stormed the pre-NSSSA race at CASS held on St. Joseph Island.  Xavier Mara, Brodie Pennie, and Maren Kasunich each placed first in all of their races. Xavier’s 4K race had an exciting finish as his time of 16 minutes and 46 seconds was a mere second ahead of second place. Those repeats paid off, Xav!  Brodie finished his 5K in a scorching time of 18 minutes and 48 seconds.  

Maren, always an exciting runner, finished her race in apparent leisure, for the win!  Following Maren in second, third and sixth place were MSS runners Mackenzie Green, Annie Balfe and Morgan Green. Of course, with those placings they easily won the team division!

The senior boys finished in second place thanks to Julian Wemigwans, Alan Wilkin, Jack Pennie and Landon Hare. Sadly, these were the only full teams with at least four runners to count as a qualifying team. Maybe even sadder, (but not for MSS) is that with just our two qualifying teams, we won the overall aggregate title! Hats off as well to our other MSS runners who also ran hard and finished but alas, didn’t have a team: Andrew Cooper, Ezra Diebolt, Patrick McCann and Orland Carter-O’Hearn. This Friday, back on the same course, is the actual, official NSSSA race. Way to go team and good luck Friday!

Family’s weekend goes swimmingly!

This past weekend, Xavier Mara finished his Bronze Cross, the day after winning his pre-NSSSA race (see above). Xavier’s mother and driver, Margit Alberti, also got her full Bronze Cross. The “Cross” is an amazing accomplishment and commitment requiring hours and hours over many weekends in the pool and classroom. Well done, Margit and Xavier!


A belated congratulations to Aurel Fox-Recollet who hails from Wiikwemkoong (now of Sudbury), who finished in fifth place out of 32 runners in the 12-kilometre Apex Warrior Trail Race back on September 25. His time was 1:26.40 on one tough course, held at the Lake Laurentian site in Sudbury, consisting of hills, more hills, sharp rocks, clay and narrow trails. Way to go, Aurel!

Turkey Trotters

The Sudbury Fitness Challenge’s Turkey Gobbler was a couple of weekends ago and several Island runners participated. In the one-kilometre girls’ division, two Lakeview School girls (under 12) didn’t just participate—they finished first and second overall! Rowyn Kasunich and Damara Wassegijig respectively were nearly a minute ahead of the third-place runner, needing only four-and-a-half minutes over the Walden cross country course! 

Not to be outdone, Rowyn’s sister Maren Kasunich, also of M’Chigeeng, ran in the women’s 3.5-kilometre event and won it by more than three minutes—they even beat the top male by more than a minute and a half! Maren ran an astonishing 14:25, not even on the road or track! Participating as well were Manitowaning’s Mara/Alberti family. Margit Alberti, Chris Mara and their son Sebastian Mara also completed the distance.

In the eight-kilometre women’s division, Birch Island’s Avery Sutherland finished fifth overall and was the first under-19-year-old in just over 43 minutes. Congratulations to all of the participants!

NOJHL nights

Manitoulin’s two players skating in the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League both found themselves on the scoresheet this week and their respective teams had mixed results for the league standings. Liam Bridgeman and his Espanola Express had their first plus-week, winning five of a possible six points. Liam had one assist for the cause and started getting more good looks on net and subsequent ice-time as well. The Express started off with a 5-3 win over the Cubs, followed by a 3-2 overtime loss to the powerhouse Soo Thunderbirds, and then a slaughter of the Elliot Lake Redwings in their rink, 8-2!

Billy Biederman, who skates for the Sudbury Cubs, had a great week offensively and now sits in third place in team scoring with four goals and four assists. That’s a total of eight points, especially impressive for a 16-year-old rookie! His team split their two games to take two of four points. They had a 2-1 win over Elliot Lake but suffered a loss to Espanola. The Cubs and Express are back at it, again in Espanola, this Friday. 7:30 is game-time!

A good sport is good for sports.