QEDHS hosts NORWOSSA badminton championships
Tim Brody - Associate Editor
Queen Elizabeth District High School (QEDHS) hosted the Northwestern Ontario Secondary Schools Athletic Association (NORWOSSA) badminton championships last Wednesday, welcoming schools from across the region to Sioux Lookout.
Students from Atikokan, Dryden, Red Lake, Fort Frances, Rainy River, Ignace, Kenora, and Sioux Lookout competed in girls singles, boys singles, boys doubles, girls doubles, and mixed doubles divisions at both the senior and junior levels.
The championship was so well attended that seniors games took place at the high school, while juniors games were held at the Sioux Lookout Recreation Centre.
Seventy-five matches were held in each location, for a total of 150 games played over the course of the day.
“The way it worked was there was one pool of six for each division. They played each other once and the top two moved on,” QEDHS badminton coach Matt Gain explained.
“Atikokan was dominant in both senior and junior (divisions),” he said.
“Apparently Atikokan has been practicing since January every day after school and it showed,” he added.
The top two teams in each division, at both the senior and junior levels, moved on to compete at the Northern Ontario Secondary Schools Athletic Association (NWOSSA) championships this week in Thunder Bay.
It was a tough day for QEDHS athletes Gain said.
Cortez Favot and Kendall Schulz finished in third place in senior boys doubles.
Katie Gervasi and Ben Forbes were third in senior mixed doubles.
Josh Rhone finished third in junior boys singles.
Jeric Briones was fourth in senior boys singles.
Haylei Diston and Teale Hulina finished fifth in senior girls doubles.
“It was a really successful day overall. Every school that was here experienced some sort of success. It was fun to host… it was just a bit of a tough day for our players,” Gain said.
Further commenting on the play of QEDHS athletes, he shared, “We’re right there and we just came off three really successful years where we went to OFSAA (Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations) three years in a row for badminton.”
“All the coaches came up and talked about the fact that it ran smoothly and everything went well,” he said of the championship.
“There were classes coming and going throughout the day… it created a good buzz in the school here,” Gain added.
In fact, Gain said students were so inspired by the games they’d seen, even though the badminton season at QEDHS is now over, students have asked if they can try out the sport.
He said that bodes well for next season. “We’re looking to come back strong.”