|Canada wins the silver medal in team combo event at Spanish Open|
CASTELLON, Spain – Canada won the silver medal on Saturday in the team combination event at the Spanish Open synchronized swimming competition
Spain, with eight of the 10 members from last year’s squad that won the world title, took the gold with 95.825 points. Canada, with only one member of last year’s world championship bronze medallist team, followed at 91.575 and Brazil was third at 89.025. The Brazilians had seven members from their team that was eighth at last year’s worlds.
The Canadian combo team members were Cassidy Beaver-Nicol of Westwold, B.C., Geneviève Bélanger of Laval, Que., Marie-Claire Friesen of Calgary, Sandy Gill of Coquitlam, B.C., Audrey Houle of Gentilly, Que., Lisa Mikelberg of Hamstead, Que., Marie-Lou Morin of Westmount, Que., Catherine Powell of Kirkland, Que., Marie Rondeau of Quebec City and Anne-Marie Vézina of L’Ancienne-Lorette, Que.
Canada’s program theme on Saturday was Dancing in the Streets.
"It was such a big and different challenge for us to go against the top Spanish team," said Beaver-Nicol. "It made it pretty exciting and we probably put together our most unified performance for this program. It would have been nice to be a bit closer to them but overall we are happy with our score."
Canada is also second in the team event after Friday’s technical program and Saturday’s preliminary free routine. Spain, which won the bronze at the worlds and has four members from that team, stands first at 189.700, Canada follows at 183.9125 and Brazil is third at 177.625.
The Canadian team members were Nicol-Beaver, Bélanger, Friesen, Gill, Houle, Mikelberg, Morin, Powell, Rondeau and Vézina. Their performance was based on a Western theme.
"We have some elements to correct but overall it went well," said Houle. "We made some individual errors and in the final we’ll need to improve our focus. I think the score reflected our performance but we feel we can reduce the gap even more with Spain tomorrow (Sunday)."
The Canadians will repeat the same program in the team final on Sunday.
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