Dauphin's Linda Kitching made the short trip to Swan River last week to compete in the 2019 55+ Games, and she came back home with some medals.

Competing in the 65-75 years of age golf event, Kitching showed off her stuff by winning a gold and silver medal.

In the 9-hole gross event, Kitching got her first medal by winning gold. Kitching added another medal by winning silver in the 18-hole gross event. 

Prior to the event, Linda was preparing hard at the Dauphin Lake Golf Club.

"I loved it because I haven't competed in the 55+ Games," said Kitching. "It felt pretty good to know that I can still golf pretty decently. It was a really fun event."

The three-day event that featured many other sports welcomed athletes from all over the province to Swan River. On top of winning her medals, Linda had a great time getting to know new people.

"I would encourage everyone to take part, I wasn't really aware of it before," said Kitching. "There is room for everyone to participate."

There are age groups for 55-65, 75-80, and 80+. 

Linda wasn't the only golfer from the Dauphin Lake Golf Club that was having success. Verna Miller won a gold and bronze medal in the 80+ golf event. Gladys Rae also brought home a gold medal from the event.

It was expected and now it's confirmed that Josh Tripp is staying in Manitoba. 

After finishing his junior hockey career with the Swan Valley Stampeders this past season, the Swan River native is set to join the University of Manitoba Bisons men's hockey team in the fall.

Signing with the Bisons is the perfect situation for Josh as he explains.

"I'm happy to have committed. It's exciting to know what I'm doing in the fall and I can't wait for it," said Tripp. "It's a good hockey program; they've put some really good teams together in the past."

Josh is coming off a season where he combined for 105 points between the regular season and playoffs. His accolades included winning the MJHL scoring title and being named the MVP of the league. Things are set to get tougher on him, however. His biggest challenge by his own admission will be getting used to playing against much older players. 

If he can adjust and produce even half of what he did this past season, Tripp will certainly make a name for himself just like he did with the Stampeders.

"Playing against 25-year-old guys will be a lot different compared to my junior days and that will be the biggest adjustment," said Tripp. "With that being said, I believe I'm ready to make the jump. I'm going to be working really hard this off-season to make sure I'm ready for it."

"I'm hoping to impress people right away. I know I'll probably have to work my way up being a younger guy and I'm ready for the challenge," he added.

On top of adding Josh, the Bisons went out to get another couple of scoring talents from the valley. Bradly Goethals and Brian Harris will also be joining the team in the fall. Combined this past season, the trio had 276 points. All three of them had more than 50 points in the regular season and all recorded at least 15 playoff points.

The Bisons as a team scored just 66 goals last season. Josh, Bradly, and Brian put up 113 together.

"It's awesome that we're all going to be playing for the U of M," said Tripp. "We were a line for most of the year and we're all quite close. We know each other's games well so it will be nice to have them there out on the ice and off the ice as well."

Winnipeg Blues Tony Apetagon and Portage Terriers Chase Brakel will also join the team in the fall.

Game number one comes against the Lethbridge Pronghorns on September 28. 

The Manitoba Marathon was a full go in Winnipeg yesterday. One of the events was the Half Marathon which featured 1399 male racers and 1181 female racers for a total of 2580. All of which had one goal and that goal was finishing first.

Cobden's Tristan Woodfine did just that with a time of 1:04:44. Just more than three minutes behind him was Neepawa's Daniel Heschuk. Daniel finished the race in 1:07:48  which was good for fifth place in a race that included more than 2500.

Heschuk was even just 12 seconds away from finishing in fourth.

"It felt pretty incredible. It was Athletics Canada National Championships for the event and they're hosting this for the next three years," said Heschuk. "There were people that were Olympians and a bunch of people who run internationally. It was really incredible to just run with some of these athletes."

"It was very humbling and really exciting to be in the mix," continued Heschuk. 

This was Daniel's sixth Half Marathon. His previous best came last year when he finished the race in 1:09:03. The time improvement speaks to how hard the Neepawa native has been working over the past while.

He also runs with the University of Manitoba Bisons Track Team.

"From mid-March until just before the race I really started to ramp things up and I was doing weights in the gym up to three times a week," said Heschuk. "I increased my mileage and was doing longer and longer more intense workouts. I've been getting up to like 70-80 miles of running per week."

From the outside, the Top 5 finish doesn't really come as a surprise. The time last year earned Daniel second place and he was just 30 seconds away from winning first. But, when you add up all of the competition at this year's event, it all still feels it's something that he's surprised with.

"Even into mile 3 I was thinking to myself I really shouldn't be up here because they were going so fast," said Heschuk. "I kept on thinking like here is where I'm going to get passed and that sort of thing. The finish certainly blew all of my expectations going in."

For now, Daniel will take some time to enjoy the great finish, but that won't last long.

"I don't know if I'll train quite as hard as I did, but I definitely do plan on taking part again next year so I'll still be working hard," concluded Heschuk.

Just over a month ago the top U16 male hockey players in the province took over Portage La Prairie with the goal of making Team Manitoba at the end of the Top 40 camp.

The camp included team practices, team building activities, and inter-squad games that were evaluated by the program coaching staffs as they made the final decision on which players would represent the province. One of the players is Russell's, Ryder Thompson.

Ryder is one of just seven defencemen in the entire province that cracked the final roster. Although they aren't forwards, Ryder joins his Rink Hockey Academy teammates, Carter Anderson, and Jesiah Bennett.

"It really feels awesome, I worked really hard to get where I am," said Thompson. "It feels good to know that my hard work is paying off. It's also nice to know that the coaching staff sees something in me and they believe I have skill and talent."

Making Team Manitoba didn`t come without its sacrifices, however. Instead of spending more time with his close friends, Ryder would spend that extra time in the gym or on the ice. 

"It's definitely been tough, obviously. I see some of my friends hanging out back at home (Russell) and I'm here in Winnipeg working out and being on the ice," said Thompson. "It's been a challenge, but it's definitely been worth it in the end."

Ryder will soon return home to Russell where he will continue working out in preparation for a very busy fall with Team Manitoba.

Included in the team's events is the WHL Cup which takes place in late October in Calgary. They will be joined at that tournament by Saskatchewan, Alberta, and British Columbia. 

When it comes to the feeling heading into that event, two things come to the mind and that's excitement and nerves.

"It's going to be very exciting to get going with another team," added Thompson. "It's going to be an honour to pull the Manitoba jersey over my head."

"With that being said, I think I'll be pretty nervous. There's a lot more pressure on me now that I've made the team," he added. "It's all about proving that I can compete in game situations now."

Well before Ryder found out he made Team Manitoba, there was another big moment in his young hockey career. With the 105th pick in the WHL Bantam Draft, the Portland WinterHawks chose Ryder. He was Portland's third pick at the draft.

"Getting drafted to the WHL is honestly a dream come true," said Thompson. "I was looking forward to this for a few years now. To hear my name get called was just awesome."

Ryder will head to Portland in the fall for their Main Camp and he hopes to make the team as a 16-year-old. 

The Stan Homeniuk Adult/Junior golf tournament went down over the weekend at the Dauphin Lake Golf Club.

Here are the results:

9 & Under:

1st - Grayson & Scott Stykalo.

2nd - Landon & Mike Pernarowski.

10-12:

1st - Jackson Delaurier & Stan Homeniuk.

2nd - Jake & Mike Penrose.

13 & Over.

1st - Eric Prokopowich & Trevor Fox.

2nd - Braydyn Tkachuk & Clayton Carefoot. 

The Parkland Gators held their wind-up party and awards ceremony this weekend.

Here are the winners:

Alex Wi was given the Intermediate Top Swimmer award.

Jade Toews was the Most Improved Intermediate Swimmer.

The Intermediate Spirit of the Club award went to Mila Heschuk, while Kiara Wilson was named the Advanced Top Swimmer.

Sophia Heschuk was the Advanced Most Improved Swimmer and finally, Sammi Rea was given the Advanced Spirit of the Club award.

Andrew Harris went into beast mode and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers are off and running to start their season. 

The Winnipeg native finished the game with 148 yards rushing and he added 27 through the air in a 33-23 win for the club. 

It was Harris' 22nd career game in which he racked up more than 100 yards rushing.

Darvin Adams led the team in receiving yards with 73 and he also added one touchdown. 

Matt Nichols finished 21-33 in the game for 184 yards and three touchdowns.

Winnipeg's next game is June 27 against Edmonton at 7:30. You can hear that game right here on 730CKDM as we're a proud member of the Blue Bomber Radio Network. 

Dauphin's William Hlady is spending his summer just down the road. The 19-year-old is playing for the Melville Millionaires of the Western Canadian Baseball League.

The hard-throwing right-hander has made four appearances. In three of them, William has seven strikeouts in 6.2 innings. He also never gave up an earned run in those three performances.

"I just trust my catcher out there. Having a different catcher from a different school has really helped out," said Hlady. "He's a little bit older and he knows more about the game. I'm just placing the ball where he wants it and I have trust that the defence will make a play."

William's last outing didn't go as hoped. He gave up seven earned runs on four hits. The outing was his only that he didn't record a strikeout. In Hlady's defence, no Mills' pitcher was able to really get any Lethbridge Bull out as they came swinging hard in route to racking up 13 runs.

"Getting behind in the count really hurt me, I was forcing myself to come into the zone more often and they were hitting the ball," added Hlady. "It's how baseball works sometimes. We have a saying that you're always going to have one bad game in a year, and hopefully, that was it. You can't sit in the past and dwell on it; you just have to move forward."

The Millionaires are 5-9 to start the season. That has them just on the outside looking in the Eastern Conference. With being just 14 games in and with more than 30 games left, William is confident this team can make good things happen. They won their last game last night against Lethbridge, 9-8.

The nine runs were second most behind the 15 the team put up against Yorkton on May 30.

"At the start, we struggled with hitting and our pitching held us in some games," said Hlady. "It looks like the bats are coming around here and everyone is feeling a lot better about how things are going."

In the recent three-game set with Lethbridge, William and the Mills' won two games and put up 18 runs overall.

When it comes to what he's enjoying most, that's a pretty simple one for the Dauphinite.

"Just meeting new guys, talking to them and playing baseball," said Hlady. "Not everyone gets this opportunity. I get up every day and I know I'll be hitting the field at night; it's a pretty special feeling. I love it."

The team plays a home and home with Moose Jaw beginning tonight in Melville.

The golf season couldn't be going any better than it is for Neepawa's Hayden Delaloye. Last month he won a Maple Leaf Junior Tour event at the Portage Golf Club.

Now the young golfer has followed that up with another tournament win, this time at the Carman Golf Club. Playing in the second event of the MJT Manitoba Series, Delaloye fired a 76 to grab the tournament victory in the one-day event.

Two of Hayden's three rounds in tournament play this season have been below 80. The win also means that he remains atop the Order of Merit in the Bantam boys division. The two wins add up to 300 points with the golfer in second place having just 225.

Last year when playing in this exact event, Delaloye placed third.

"It was a good day. I was kind of disappointed that the tournament was only one day," said Delaloye. "I didn't do well in it last year so it was nice to bounce back."

"My putting was probably the best part of my game the entire day, I didn't hit the ball fantastic," he added. 

The flat stick helped Hayden rack up five birdies, one of which was almost an eagle but he lipped out.

Next up for Hayden is an MJT event at the Glendale Golf & Country Club in Winnipeg. That tournament tees it up in 12 days and is a two-day event.

"I'm just trying to keep my mind in the game and I really need to stay focused," said Delaloye. "Bad shots may happen at Glendale, but I need to stay focused and rebound nicely."

"I also need to make my drives count if I want to have success," he added.

Winning the tournament in Carman opened up a whole new stage for Hayden he didn't think he would get the chance to take part in at his age.

Because of his performance in Carman, he's been invited to the 2019 Future Champions Golf Callaway World Championships. The event is in Palm Desert, California from July 13-17. 

"It was so cool when I found out I was invited to the event," said Delaloye. "It's really nice to know that I can compete with others from all over, it means a lot to me."

For the past five seasons, Roblin's Colby Cherneski has been a Parkland Ranger. Two of the seasons were with the Bantam team and the past three have come with the Midget team. Dedication and commitment to the crest are what Colby prides himself on and now, he's set to do that with another team. 

Colby has signed on to play with the Pilot Butte Storm of the Prairie Junior Hockey League which is Saskatchewan's Provincial Junior "B" league. Colby will join a team that went 29-10-0-1 in the regular season last year. The team didn't fare as well in the playoffs losing four games.

"It definitely feels great. It's always a good thing when you can continue playing competitive hockey after your Midget career," said Cherneski. "I'm really excited to be heading out and playing in a new league and meeting new people, it's going to be great."

Becoming a part of the Storm all started when Colby got in touch with one of the scouts for the Melville Millionaires. He took part in their "Spring Camp" and gave it his all. They said they loved his game and they were very interested in him. It turns out that the scout was also an Assistant Coach with the Storm.

"The General Manager then asked me if my parents and I wanted to check out the facilities and the dressing room and all of that," said Cherneski. "So we did that and we eventually came to an agreement at the sit-down and I signed, it was a pretty thrilling time."

"It's definitely a good feeling not having to look for somewhere to play, but rather they were looking for me," he added. "It makes the whole process a lot easier."

Cherneski put up 16 points this past season with the Rangers. During 95 games over the past three seasons, Colby put up 23 points. Prior to the past three seasons, Cherneski put up 32 points with the Bantam Rangers.

As he embarks on his new journey, Colby has nothing but good things to say about the Ranger program.

"I feel like as you move up through the Ranger program they really prepare you to make the next step," said Cherneski. "I can't thank the whole Parkland Ranger program enough for everything they did for me, I'm extremely grateful."

Colby knows it'll be a tough transition playing against players older and bigger than him, but, he also knows what he's capable of and he's ready to make an impact.

"I definitely want to go there and make an impact as soon as I can," he added. “I definitely hope to put the puck in the back of the net more often next season. I'm ready to do anything the club needs from me."

Dauphin's Kiara Wilson hit the pool to take part in her final Manitoba Jr. Provincial Swim Championships over the weekend in Winnipeg for her current age group.

That's because the 12-year-old will move up an age group next year, and what a final few performances she put on.

She won three individual gold medals in the 50m breaststroke, 100m individual medley, and 100m breaststroke. Kiara also joined forces to dominate with her teammates, Kelton Amendt, Parker Beer, and Sophia Heschuk. 

The four went on to win gold in the mixed 200m medley relay.

"It felt really good because that was my last swim meet in this age group," said Wilson. "I didn't expect to get that many gold medals, especially with the relay. It was a really great feeling to get a gold medal with my teammates."

"I've been practicing a lot and every time I practice, my goal is to get better," she added. "I'm really happy all of the hard work paid off."

Kiara wasn't the only one that had lots of success at the event. On top of winning gold in the relay with Kiara, Kelton Amendt won silver in the 100m IM and he joined Sammi Rea, Rhea Amendt, and Parker Beer in winning silver in the mixed 200m free relay.

Parker Beer also earned a trifecta of medals. He won a bronze medal in the 100m IM and he also won a gold and silver in both relay races.

Having success herself is always great, but something she also enjoys is watching her teammates have success.

"Yeah, it's really fun to go to provincials with all of my teammates and see how good they do," continued Wilson. "They always get medals and personal bests; it's really fun to be a part of."

Next up for Kiara and the Gators is the ManSask event next month.

When next year's swimming season rolls around, Kiara will have to adapt to competing at a new level. She will join the 13-14-year-old age group. That's a challenge that the 12-year-old will be ready for.

"It'll be a little bit tougher because I'm swimming against older people, but I'll try my hardest and we'll see how it goes," concluded Wilson.