A strong field

Is­land’s top ath­letes among fi­nal­ists for se­nior awards

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - SPORTS - Com­piled by Sport P.E.I.’s com­mu­ni­ca­tions of­fi­cer Nick Mur­ray.

Six ath­letes who en­joyed an out­stand­ing 2015 will be in con­tention for the Bell Aliant se­nior male and fe­male ath­lete of the year hon­ours when they are pre­sented at the an­nual awards evening Wed­nes­day at the Rodd Char­lot­te­town Ho­tel.

Carsen Camp­bell (biathlon), Jeff Ellsworth (soft­ball) and Brett Gal­lant (curl­ing) are all in con­tention for the male award, while on the fe­male side the fi­nal­ists are Caitlin Camp­bell (biathlon), Shan­non Ma­cAulay (hockey) and Jenna Smith (Spe­cial Olympics ten­pin bowl­ing).

Camp­bell is com­mit­ted to a suc­cess­ful ca­reer in biathlon, and in 2015 the Cen­tral Bedeque na­tive made great strides to achiev­ing his goals, earn­ing se­lec­tion for the Cana­dian IBU Cup team to com­pete on the in­ter­na­tional cir­cuit.

In Minsk at the world ju­niors he was the top in­di­vid­ual Cana­dian and he en­joyed a suc­cess­ful na­tional cham­pio n s h i p , reach­ing the podium three times and win­ning the sprint ti­tle.

Ellsworth says he is re­tir­ing from in­ter­na­tional soft­ball to fur­ther his coach­ing ca­reer, and if so the Brook­lyn na­tive can look back on 2015 as ar­guably the most suc­cess­ful of his ca­reer.

Con­sid­ered one of the world’s best outfielders, team cap­tain Ellsworth led Canada to two ma­jor ti­tles in 2015 - the In­ter­na­tional Soft­ball Fed­er­a­tion (ISF) World Cham­pi­onship in Saska­toon, and the Pan Am Games in Toronto. In both com­pe­ti­tions he led by ex­am­ple both with his hit­ting and de­fence.

Ellsworth earned a third world ti­tle with the Hill United Chiefs,

ju­nior

The an­nual awards pre­sented by Sport P.E.I. at its gala ban­quet. - Feb. 3.

Rodd Char­lot­te­town Ho­tel.

Tick­ets for the awards re­cep­tion and pre­sen­ta­tions are avail­able for $25 by con­tact­ing Nick Mur­ray at Sport P.E.I., at 902-368-4547. and he just failed to make it a per­fect set when he set­tled for a sil­ver at the Canad ian cham­pi­onships with the East H a n t s Mastodons of Nova Sco­tia.

Charl o tt etown’s Brett Gal­lant may be wear­ing the colours of New­found­land and Labrador as part of the Brad Gushue rink, but he still gets lots of Is­land sup­port, and 2015 was a fine year for Brett.

Play­ing se­cond stone, Gal­lant and the Gushue rink picked up three ma­jor Grand Slam events in the past 12 months, in­clud­ing most re­cently The Na­tional. They have also been run­ners-up at the Tour Chal­lenge and Cana­dian Open.

A great at­tempt at the Briar was de­railed in the play­offs af­ter go­ing 9-2, but this year the team is off to a great start with a num­ber of tour­na­ment wins and more ma­jor hard­ware may yet be com­ing their way.

Like her brother Carsen, Caitlin Camp­bell is a ris­ing star in Cana­dian biathlon.

Camp­bell en­joyed fine re­sults at the Canada Games, plac­ing in the top-10, and she helped the girls re­lay team to a fine fifth­place fin­ish.

Camp­bell won two golds at the At­lantics, se­cured a podium fin­ish at the Que­bec Cup and in De­cem­ber be­came the first Is­land fe­male to be named to a Cana­dian team when she qual­i­fied for this month’s world cham­pi­onships in Ro­ma­nia, cour­tesy of two wins at the na­tional team tri­als in Can­more, Alta.

Ma­cAulay was also golden in 2015, help­ing the Cana­dian women’s de­vel­op­ment team win hockey gold last Jan­uary at the Na­tions Cup in Ger­many.

It was an­other mile­stone for the strong for­ward from Mount Her­bert, and she was named as­sis­tant cap­tain for the team’s most re­cent win at the Na­tions Cup tour­na­ment. In the na­tional women’s league 2015 draft, she was se­lected 19th over­all by the Bos­ton Pride.

A fine leader, she is cap­tain of NCAA Divi­sion 1 Clark­son Univer­sity, and in 2015 she had a ca­reer-high 33 points and won con­fer­ence all­star hon­ours.

Sport is about good news sto­ries and Eller­slie’s Jenna Smith’s thee gold medals at the Spe­cial Olympics World Games in Los An­ge­les in 2015 was one of the best.

The ten­pin bowler earned her se­lec­tion fol­low­ing her goldmedal per­for­mances at the 2014 na­tion­als, and in L.A. she was on fire, tak­ing first place in the sin­gles, dou­bles and team events.

The Spe­cial Olympics ath­lete of the year, Smith re­turned home to a hero’s wel­come, with a pa­rade in her hon­our in Tyne Val­ley.

Carsen Camp­bell

Caitlin Camp­bell

Ellsworth

Smith

Gal­lant

Ma­cAulay

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