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Nova Scotia athletes poised for record-breaking medal haul

Nova Scotia is pushing for its best medal total in Canada Games history in Prince Edward Island.<br />

Nova Scotia is pushing for its best medal total in Canada Games history in Prince Edward Island.

The province piled up 13 medals on Thursday, bumping its total to 34 heading into the final weekend. That puts Nova Scotia in fifth in the medal standings and leaves it 13 away from its 47-medal record from 2001 in London, Ont.

Halifax track star Geoff Harris was among seven gold-medal winners, finishing first in the 800 metres.

“It’s great for Nova Scotia,” Harris said, of the podium success. “It’s all about finishing strong and most of the (athletes and coaches) are hoping to go out with a bang.”

Harris was originally ruled ineligible for the Games because he missed a set of selection trials while training in Europe. He was only cleared to compete last Thursday after the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia overturned the decision. He took the lead in the final 200 metres and won in 1:50.59.

“It went exactly how I hoped it would,” Harris said.

Track and field athletes won two gold and five bronze yesterday. The paddling parade to the podium also continued, with canoe-kayak athletes winning five gold and one silver.

Waverley’s Shaun Fair (K-1 2,000 metres) and Dartmouth’s Mark James (C-1 2,000) struck solo gold.

Waverley’s Nicole Brown and Kentville’s Alexa Irvin won gold in the women’s K-2 2,000 and Halifax’s Andrew Jessop and Dartmouth’s Adam Tenwolde did the same in the K-2 2,000. In the men’s C-2 2,000, it was Fall River’s Todd MacDonald and Dartmouth’s Brian Stever finishing first.

Paddlers have 16 medals overall and Wednesday’s cancelled day of racing because of wind didn’t derail them.

“There’s nothing that can slow down our team,” Fair said.

There are 18 more canoe-kayak finals on Friday.

Harris, who competed at the 2005 Games in Regina, said the closeness of the venues has helped camaraderie and is pushing the athletes to greater levels of success.

“It’s been a lot easier for us to all go support each other,” Harris said. “As a group, Nova Scotia has kept it close and the support is way stronger than it was in 2005.”

Nova Scotia's other medals

Sydney’s Geoff Myatt (athletics, men’s discus)

Fall River’s Michelle Russell in the women’s K-1 2,000, her second medal of the weekend

Bridgewater’s Jenna Martin (athletics, women’s 200 metres)
Aylesford’s Trevor Chandler (athletics, men’s 200 metres Special Olympics)
New Glasgow’s Celia Peters (athletics, women’s 800 metres)
Bridgewater’s Mattias Wolter (athletics, men’s 3,000-metre steeplechase)
Dartmouth’s Laura Maessen (athletics, high jump)

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