Yukon-based judoka Lia Hinchey brought home hardware from Judo Canada’s 2023 Open Championships in Montreal, tying for bronze in the U16-57kg division on May 20.
She was the only member of Judo Yukon’s six-person team to secure a podium finish at the tournament, which ran from May 18 to 21.
The Yukon delegation of athletes also included Leah McLean, Liam Gishler, Kaylee Fortier, Huxley Briggs and Lia’s sister Jaymi Hinchey, the latter of whom clinched one of the territory’s three medals during the 2023 Canada Winter Games earlier this year.
Julian Gissling, the only competitor from Nunavut, also won a bronze medal, tying Ontario’s Eden Khalfon for third in the U18-90kg division.
Despite the Yukon team failing to capture more medals or secure positions representing Canada, Judo Yukon vice-president Aaron Jensen told the News via email that he is “very impressed” by their performance.
“To continue to be competitive at this level, our athletes have to continue to travel out to these Judo Canada-sanctioned events, as well as increase their strength and conditioning programs with high-intensity judo training,” Jensen said, adding that he is optimistic about Judo Yukon’s future prospects.
“I try not to make predictions, although if the athletes continue their training as they have the past season, they will definitely get better results.”
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