July 17th, 2024

Canadian star swimmer Maggie Mac Neil wins fourth gold at Pan Am Games

By The Canadian Press on October 24, 2023.

Canada's Maggie Mac Neil prepares to enter the water in the women's 50m freestyle swim event at the Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile, Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

SANTIAGO, Chile – Star swimmer Maggie Mac Neil picked up her fourth gold medal at the Pan Am Games as Canada continued its medal haul in the pool Tuesday.

Mac Neil, from London, Ont., finished her Games with gold in the women’s 50-metre freestyle after finishing tied with American Gabi Albiero in 24.84 seconds.

The win gave Mac Neil six medals (four gold, one silver, one bronze) from seven events entered.

Ottawa’s Julie Brousseau added another gold, winning the women’s 400 individual relay in four minutes 43.76 seconds.

In other results, Canada’s women’s eight rowing team won gold, while Dorien Llewellyn of Innisfail, Alta., also topped the podium in the men’s overall water-ski competition.

Swimmer Collyn Gagne of Milton, Ont., took silver in the men’s 400 individual medley, while Canada picked up two more water-ski medals with Paige Rini, who was born in Florida but represents Canada, taking silver in the women’s overall and Hunter Smith of North Vancouver, B.C., earning silver in the men’s wakeboard.

In racquetball, Coby Iwaasa of Lethbridge, Alta., and Samuel Murray of Baie-Comeau, Que., advanced to the men’s doubles gold-medal match before losing to Mexico’s Javier Mar and Rodrigo Montoya.

In rowing, Canadian squad of Kendra Hartley (Calgary), Olivia McMurray (Red Deer, Alta.), Ailzée Brien (Sainte-Agathe, Que.), Parker Illingworth (Seattle), Abby Spiers (Victoria), Shaye De Paiva (Calgary), Abigail Dent (Kenora, Ont.), Leia Till (Potomac, Md.) and coxswain Kristen Kit (St. Catharines, Ont.) led at all 500-metre checkpoints and finished the 2,000-metre race in 6:10.7.

The United States was second in 6:14.17 and host Chile was third in 6:17.78.

It was Canada’s third rowing medal of the Games. Dent and McMurray took silver in women’s coxless pair and Hartley, Illingworth, Brien and De Paiva earned bronze in women’s quadruple sculls on Monday.

Kit was coxswain when Canada won women’s eight gold for the first time in 29 years at the Tokyo Games. She will also cox Canada’s boat in the mixed eight A final Wednesday.

In water-ski, Llewellyn picked up his third medal of the Games when he scored 2,970.59 points over the slalom, tricks and jump to win the overall title.

Tobias Giorgis of Argentina (2,689.09) was second and Martin Labra Thiermann of Chile (2,671.83 points) was third.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 24, 2023.

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