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Golden girl: Johns wins fourth, fifth gold medals of Western Canada Games, Lin tops 100m freestyle

Boughen, male basketball going for gold; Botterill, female softball into medal round
Team Saskatchewan’s golden girl had some company from a Moose Jaw Kinsmen Flying Fins teammate on top of the Western Canada Summer Games swimming podium on Monday afternoon.

Cadence Johns picked up her fourth and fifth gold medals of the Games with victories in the 200m breaststroke and 200m backstroke and Austin Lin topped the podium in the 100m freestyle as the Games swimming competition continued at the Aquatic Centre in Swift Current.

For Johns, the victories marked her eighth medal of the week, after also winning silver in the 200m individual medley on Sunday night. That race saw her finish just over a second behind Manitoba’s Mia West in a time of 2:26.58.

It didn’t take long for Johns to get back on top of the podium, though, as she touched the wall in 2:50.20 on Monday morning to win the 200m breast by 26 hundredths of a second over Alberta’s Qunnlan Shea. She then swam a time of 2:26.10 to take first place in the 200m back by almost three seconds ahead of Alberta’s Jordan Gerber.

Lin found himself in a battle with teammate Jayden Bilous for his gold medal and ended up with a fairly comfortable margin of victory in the high-speed 100m free, touching in 56.33 to the Saskatoon swimmer’s 56.64.

Sunday, Lin finished first in his heat in the 50m butterfly in a time of 28.76, landing sixth overall. Leo Konge of the Northwest Territories won gold in 27.43.

The Fins duo also picked up medals in the 4x200m relays, with Lin joining Bilous, Saskatoon’s Andrew Mgheim and Regina’s Ben Stewart to win silver, while Johns took the pool with North Battleford’s Madison Higgs, Saskatoon’s Ella Howe and Regina’s Sloane Kerr and won bronze.

Reese Koch finished seventh in the 50m back on Sunday in a time of 33.42 before touching the wall in 1:06.21 to finish 21st in the 100m free.

Chloe Johns finished 11th in the 200m IM in a time of 2:38.18 Sunday evening before posting a sixth-place finish in the 200m breast Monday in a time of 2:53.95.

Action in the pool wraps up Monday night, with the open water competitions set for Tuesday.

Dylan Boughen and Team Saskatchewan are going for gold in male basketball.

Team Sask capped the round robin with a 62-59 victory over Manitoba on Sunday night before rolling to a 76-48 victory over Yukon Monday.

The tournament hosts put together an impressive comeback in the victory over Manitoba, overcoming a 36-29 deficit at half and 49-46 through three quarters to earn the win. Boughen scored 10 points in the contest, Saskatoon’s Noah Flaman led all scorers with 16 points.

Things weren’t quite as close against Yukon, as Team Sask roared out to a 23-7 lead in the first quarter and extended their edge to 49-22 at half on their way to the comfortable victory. Boughen had another solid contest with 16 points, with Flaman leading the way with 24 points.

Saskatchewan (3-1) will now face Alberta (4-0) for gold on Tuesday afternoon. Alberta defeated Team Sask 94-74 in the round robin.

The women’s softball competition took a hit on Monday as the constant, steady rain over much of the southern part of the province washed out both round robin games scheduled for the day – with both contests to have featured Moose Jaw’s Courtney Botterill and Team Sask.

As a result, Saskatchewan finished with a 1-1 record and will face Alberta on Tuesday morning, with the loser of that contest claiming bronze and the winner moving on to face Manitoba for gold later in the day.

Team Sask defeated Alberta 6-3 and fell to Manitoba 3-2 in the round robin.

Tuesday marks the final day of the first half of the Games, with track and field, baseball, diving, golf, rowing, tennis, triathlon, volleyball and wrestling beginning Wednesday.

Alberta leads the medal standings with 42 gold, 42 silver and 36 bronze for 120 medals, while Saskatchewan sits second with 16 gold, 16 silver and 15 bronze for 51 medals, three ahead of Manitoba (17-17-14). Konge’s win in the pool was the first gold medal for the three teams from the territories.