Athletes from the Okanagan-Similkameen brought home 112 medals from the 55-plus B.C. Games in North Vancouver, Aug.25-29.
Among those was gold by Penticton’s Jack Byron and Terry O’Riordon in lawn bowling. The pair, who have played together for 10 years, played what Byron said was the best games of their lives during the Games.
“Every team was actually better than us. We played well above our own level,” said Byron, adding they played against former Canadian champions. “We came out on fire.”
Byron and O’Riordon faced pairs from West Vancouver, North Vancouver and White Rock. After two matches they built such a lead in the point standings that their third game didn’t matter.
“That’s how well we played,” he said.
The skill of the other teams was much better than Byron, who has competed in B.C. championships, ever imagined. “The calibre was extremely high. I would say it was as good as you can get in the province.”
Other Penticton athletes reached the podium as well in their respective sports. Ginny Baker teamed up with Kaleden’s Sandra Hawthorne to earn silver in 55-64 doubles darts. Hawthorne and Ginny then teamed up with Peachland’s Pete Wenham and Kaleden’s Calvin Ek to earn a bronze medal. Bill Pick’s foursome with Okanagan Falls’ Jean Mellish and Russ Ashton as well as Oliver’s Ruth McDonald earned silver in darts.
Kaleden’s Tony and Lil Blashko earned silver in curling with Summerland’s Tammy and Glen Brennan in 55-64 action.
The Okanagan Macs slo-pitch team earned bronze. Contributing to the win was Okanagan Falls’ Ken Kamp and Penticton’s Bob Ezart. In darts, Russ Ashton won gold in 65-plus singles action.
From Oliver, John Hong and Martell Mah earned silver. McDonald teamed up with Pick, Ashton and Mellish to earn silver in team darts.
In slo-pitch, the Kelowna Ogopogo 55 won gold over Southern Swoop with Jan Campbell, Penticton’s Debbie Brooks and Summerland’s Donna Evans. The Swoop 60-Plus team featured Penticton’s Beverley Fox and Vicky Horton, Pamela Cayer, Summerland’s Donna Eaton, Pat Soroke of Keremeos, Gloria Luypen of Oliver and Keremeos’ Bev Smith.
In pickle ball, Michael Carter earned a silver medal in men and women doubles. Gord Young won gold in men and women 4.5-plus play.
Oliver’s Alfred and Anna Kole won gold and silver, respectively in golf. Alfred won the men’s 60-64 division B, while Anna took the 65-69 division A. Dianne Hughes won gold in the women 65-69 Division B, while Marie Middler won gold in the 80-plus division. Ingrid Nicholson earned silver in the 70-74 division B. In archery, Cliff Young earned silver in the 70-74 compound bow w/sight w/release aid target and 3D. He also took bronze in the same category.