“It’s getting really exciting because it’s so close now,” said Mya Chisholm, a 17-year-old Summerside native.
She is a member of the girls’ hockey team that will compete in Week 2. They leave Feb. 23 while the first wave of Island athletes depart on Feb. 14.
Chisholm played golf at the 2017 Canada Games in Winnipeg. This will be a different experience as a member of a team as opposed to competing individually.
“We want to finish first in our pool after the (first) four games and hopefully move on and we’ll set more goals moving forward after that,” she said.
Kent Nicholson, of Maritime Electric, which is one of Team P.E.I.’s sponsors, said his son Alex, a competitive swimmer who is in Grade 6, was inspired by his Charlottetown Bluephins teammate Alexa McQuaid, who won silver at the 2017 Games.
“I tell you this because each and every one of you, as Team P.E.I. athletes, are inspiring young girls and young boys from tip to tip on P.E.I.,” he said.
His wish for the athletes, he said, was to achieve personal success, however they measure it. For some, it might be a personal best. For others, a well-fought victory or a medal.
“But know that you are all winners in the eyes of young kids across this Island,” Nicholson said. “So, knowing that you are already winners, let this free you, to leave nervousness behind, to go for broke and leave it all out there on the playing field with no regrets.
“Whether you win or lose, you have the unwavering support of Islanders cheering you on from home with pride as you represent our province.”
Charlotte Linkletter was tasked with thanking the parents and guardians for all of their support through the years, but acknowledged it was hard to fully put into words.
“You have been beside us through this journey, supporting us financially, resigning yourself to fit our hectic schedule and being our biggest fan,” she said. “You’ve cheered for us, celebrated the wins and helped us through the tough losses. . .
“We, as athletes, would not be where we are today if it wasn't for everything you do for us.”
Laureen Steadman watched proudly in the bleachers as her daughter Danielle and the members of the ringette squad were introduced and brought onto the stage at UPEI.
The St. Peters Bay native said the girls have worked hard for years with a goal of becoming a member of Team P.E.I.
“To have that dream come true for all the girls, and for Danielle, is a very proud moment,” she said. “(They’re) a great group of girls with an amazing coaching staff.”
The parents cheered loud for their daughters as they performed their own cheer on the stage. There’s a camaraderie within the team, but also amongst the parents. If someone can’t get to an event, their daughter will go with a teammate. They look out for one another and enjoy spending time together.
“We’re a family – a ringette family,” Steadman said.
Need to know
A look at Team P.E.I. for the 2019 Canada Games in Red Deer, Alta.
Contingent – 222 people. It includes 153 athletes, 54 team officials and 15 mission staff. There are 19 teams competing in 15 sports.
When – The Games take place from Feb. 15-March 3. They are split into two weeks with different sports competing in either the first week or Week 2.