Smith rolls to another gold at Worlds

Is­lan­der cel­e­brates her gold-medal win at World Games

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS - BY JASON SIM­MONDS

Jenna Smith made it a per­fect sweep.

The 25-year-old from Eller­slie won her third gold medal in as many events in ten­pin bowl­ing at the 2015 Spe­cial Olympics World Games in Los An­ge­les on Thurs­day.

Smith bowled games of 127, 145 and a ca­reer-best 199 en route to win­ning her sin­gles di­vi­sion.

“I knew it was go­ing to be a good day in the first game, but I never thought I’d bowl a 199,” said Smith, whose pre­vi­ous best score was 194.

As for her 199 per­for­mance, Smith found her groove right off the bat.

“It was crazy,” she re­called. “I had four strikes and two spares in the first five or six frames.”

Smith teamed with Steve Beaucage, Toufil Irani and Ash­leigh Pag­notta to win gold in a team com­pe­ti­tion on Tues­day.

Later in the day, Smith and Pag­notta claimed gold in dou­bles.

Sig­nif­i­cant ac­com­plish­ment

When told win­ning three gold medals at a World Games is a sig­nif­i­cant ac­com­plish­ment, Smith replied, “I guess it is!”

She ac­knowl­edged win­ning three gold medals still hasn’t sunk in, and “prob­a­bly won’t un­til to­mor­row (Fri­day) or Satur­day.”

Team Canada mis­sion staff mem­ber and Spe­cial Olympics P.E.I. ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Char­ity Shee­han was over­joyed with Smith’s ac­com­plish­ments.

“It’s fan­tas­tic,” beamed Shee­han. “We are very, very pleased.”

Smith will re­ceive her sin­gles’ gold medal on Satur­day.

Paynter in 100-me­tre fi­nal

John Paynter of Free­town will run his fi­nal event at the 2015 Spe­cial Olympics World Games on Fri­day af­ter­noon.

The 42-year-old Paynter has ad­vanced to the 100-me­tre fi­nal.

He had a time of 23.13 sec­onds in his 100-me­tre di­vi­sion­ing race on Mon­day.

Paynter also es­tab­lished two per­sonal-best times in the 200 me­tres — 50.86 sec­onds and 50.15 sec­onds ear­lier this week. Paynter was fourth in the fi­nal.

Jenna Smith could be ex­cused if she did not get much sleep on Tues­day night.

The 25-year-old from Eller­slie was in­formed around 9 p.m., At­lantic Time, that she had won two gold medals for Team Canada in ten­pin bowl­ing at the 2015 Spe­cial Olympics World Games in Los An­ge­les.

“I’m speech­less, re­ally,” said Smith in a phone in­ter­view with TC Media just mo­ments af­ter re­ceiv­ing of­fi­cial con­fir­ma­tion. “I just got the word about the group (team) a few min­utes ago, and right now I just got word about the dou­bles.”

When asked her ini­tial re­ac­tion to learn­ing she was a dou­ble gold-medal­list at the World Games, Smith chuck­led, “I screamed, ac­tu­ally,” while adding, “How am I go­ing to tell ev­ery­body?”

Although she did not com­pete on Wed­nes­day, it was a very mem­o­rable day for Smith and her Cana­dian team­mates. That’s be­cause the medal pre­sen­ta­tions and cer­e­mony took place.

Smith teamed with Steve Beaucage, Toufil Irani and Ash­leigh Pag­notta to win gold in a team com­pe­ti­tion.

Smith and Pag­notta, who is from Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., then went on to claim gold in dou­bles.

As for her own per­for­mance, Smith, who av­er­ages over 100 a game, said she was quite pleased.

“All of my scores were over 100 to­day (Tues­day),” she said. “I was re­ally pleased with that. “I was like, ‘Oh my God!’” Smith and fel­low Is­land ath­lete John Paynter have re­ceived lots of mes­sages and well wishes from P.E.I.

“Thank you to ev­ery­one back home,” she said.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Jenna Smith smiles as she poses with fel­low mem­bers of Team Canada at the open­ing cer­e­mony of 2015 Spe­cial Olympics World Games in Los An­ge­les.

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