Brian Malfesi, right, kayaking partner Vincent Jourdenais, center, seen with the national team assistant coach Mathieu Pelletier, are in Japan for the 2020 Games. (Michael Malfesi/Facebook)

Brian Malfesi, right, kayaking partner Vincent Jourdenais, center, seen with the national team assistant coach Mathieu Pelletier, are in Japan for the 2020 Games. (Michael Malfesi/Facebook)

Maple Ridge outfielder playing for bronze at Tokyo Olympics

Local kayaker Brian Malfesi competes Aug. 4 and 5 of the Tokyo Olympics

Local athletes are aiming for Olympic gold in Tokyo with some competitions already underway.

Larissa Franklin of Maple Ridge will be taking to the field this evening, Monday, July 26 at 9 p.m. PST, as the Canadian women’s softball team take on Mexico for the bronze medal. Canada already beat the Mexican team 4-0 during the first game of the opening round.

However, they suffered losses to the United States and to Japan, 1-0, in each game. But, they defeated Australia 7-1 and yesterday were victorious over Italy 8-1 to make it into medal contention.

The United States is taking on Japan for the gold medal on July 27.

The Canadian women’s water polo team fell to Spain 14-10 on Monday, July 26. Monika Eggens, who was born in Maple Ridge but now hails from Pitt Meadows, scored one of Canada’s 10 goals. Teammate Elyse Lemay-lavoie scored a hat trick, with other goals coming from Kyra Christmas and Shae La Roche who scored two each, and Axelle Crevier and Hayley McKelvey who each scored one goal.

Online, head coach David Paradelo said the team missed a key opportunity during the game.

“We were one goal down when we had a power play and we missed. They counter attacked and scored. It made it a two goal difference instead of tight game. From there, it was difficult to catch up,” he explained.

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On Saturday, July 24, Eggens scored a hat trick in a game against Australia, but that wasn’t enough to beat the Aussie team which took the game 8-5.

The next game for team Canada is Tuesday at 11:30 p.m.PST the opponent is South Africa.

Kayaker Brian Malfesi, the first sprint paddling athlete from B.C. to qualify for the Olympics in the past 33 years, will not start competition until Aug. 4 in Tokyo when heats are to begin for the men’s kayak double 1000 metres. Malfesi will be racing with kayaking partner Vincent Jourdenais of Quebec.

The pair left for Japan on July 24 with the rest of the Canadian men’s kayak team.

Malfesi and Jourdenais will race four times in Tokyo. Locally you can watch them compete at 6:45 p.m. PST and 8:45 p.m. PST on Aug. 3 and 4, respectively.

Brent Hayden, who was born in Maple Ridge and now lives in Mission, and his teammates on the Canadian men’s 4x100m freestyle swim team set a new national record, but failed to capture a medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Hayden and his squad finished with a Canadian record-breaking time of 3:10.82 which earned them a fourth-place finish, just behind the bronze-winning team from Australia (3:10.22).

The United States repeated as the gold-medal winner in the event on Sunday night with a time of 3:08.97 while Italy was second finishing in 3:10.11.

Hayden, 37, a three-time Olympian, led the way for the Canadian team, which also included Joshua Liendo Edwards, Yuri Kisil, and Markus Thormeyer.

Hayden, who announced his retirement nearly a decade ago, made an amazing comeback and qualified to compete in the 2020 Games.

With files from Kevin Mills, Mission City Record


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Mexico’s Victoria Vidales, left, catches the ball as Canada’s Larissa Franklin runs to the base during the softball game between Mexico and Canada at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Wednesday, July 21, 2021, in Fukushima , Japan. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Mexico’s Victoria Vidales, left, catches the ball as Canada’s Larissa Franklin runs to the base during the softball game between Mexico and Canada at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Wednesday, July 21, 2021, in Fukushima , Japan. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Brian Malfesi will be competing in the men’s kayak double 1000 metres with partner Vincent Jourdenais. (Michael Malfesi/Facebook)

Brian Malfesi will be competing in the men’s kayak double 1000 metres with partner Vincent Jourdenais. (Michael Malfesi/Facebook)