Medals just weren’t in the cards for Moose Jaw and area competitors at the Saskatchewan High Schools Athletic Association provincial badminton championships on Saturday in Rosthern.
Cornerstone Christian School’s Kenzie Behrns had the closest brush with hardware, reaching the bronze medal final before falling short, while the Central mixed doubles team of Jaylon Salido-Porter and Ember Dusomme were unable to pick up a win and Briercrest Christian Academy’s Ike Wong just missed the playoffs.
Behrns, who came into the tournament as the defending silver medalist from the last time provincials were held back in 2019, put together a 2-1 record in her round-robin pool to advance to the playoff round.
She opened the tournament with a 21-7, 21-18 win over Regina Campbell’s Sophie O’Neal before losing a hard-fought 21-9, 19-21, 21-12 match to Shellbrook’s Marissa Skavlebo. That meant Behrns’ next contest was a must-win if she was to reach the medal round, and the Falcons standout would come through with a 21-19, 21-14 win over Lloydminster’s Emma Gray.
Behrns drew a tough assignment in her semifinal contest and would fall 21-10, 21-11 to eventual gold medalist Nataly Eng from Regina O’Neill. That sent Behrns into the bronze medal match, where she’d drop a 21-14, 21-16 contest to Choiceland’s Grace Chamberlain.
Wong ran into a buzzsaw right off the bat in his tournament, as he dropped a 21-16, 21-6 decision to Regina Leboldus’ John Kozak, who would win gold without dropping a set.
The second match was a different story, as Wong would battle to a 21-19, 16-21, 21-16 win over Muenster’s Riley Sylvestre. Like Behrns, that win made for a do-or-die match in his final round-robin game, and Wong would fall 21-8, 21-17 to Saskatoon Walter Murray’s Mikhail Sloboshan.
Salido-Porter and Dusomme had a tough weekend and were unable to win a set, losing 21-19, 21-11 to Lemberg’s Jake Mayo and Saren Petrychyn, 21-19 21-17 to Prince Albert St. Mary’s Alex de Padua and Jazlyn Pshebnicki before closing out their tournament with a 21-16 21-9 loss to Saskatoon Centennial’s eventual gold medalists Michael Chai and Nilah Ong.