Big day for Team Cayman

Aijah Lewis, Alexander Pascal, and Carl Morgan with their medals.

It was a big day for the Cayman Islands on Wednesday, 28 June, at the NatWest Island Games in Gotland, Sweden, with nine medals being won and various records being set by Team Cayman athletes.

At the end of Wednesday, Cayman athletes had won a combined 19 medals: two gold, 10 silver and seven bronze, and were 12th in the medal table out of 23 competing island teams.

Alexander Pascal was the man of the moment at the Gutavallen stadium when he won the men’s javelin with a new Island Games record of 73.39 metres and became the second Cayman athlete to stand atop the podium so far.

Pascal is showing good form after an impressive showing for the University of Missouri at the NCAA Championships earlier this month when he set a new Cayman Islands national record of 75.38 metres.

Alexander Pascal set a new Island Games record.

Also in track and field, Carl Morgan won silver in the men’s long jump behind Gotland’s Daniel Örevik. Morgan sat in the lead with 7.00 metres until the last round when the home town favourite and defending champion outdid him with 7.26 metres. Morgan, who picked up a leg injury was unable to better that mark with his final jump.

Örevik and Morgan have won the last four gold medals in the event at the NatWest Island Games – Morgan in 2011 and 2013, and Örevik in 2015 and 2017.

Aijah Lewis also made the podium for Team Cayman in the women’s high jump. She finished third with a best clearance of 1.66 metres.

Earlier in the day, Jamal Walton ran 46.43 sec in the heats of the men’s  400m, breaking the previous Island Games record of 46.70 set by Guernsey’s Dale Garland 10 years ago.

Lauren Hew is winning medals and setting records.

In the pool, Lauren Hew delivered a pair of medals with silver in the women’s 50m freestyle and a bronze in the 200m backstroke. Her time of 26.15 in the 50m freestyle was a new personal best and a Cayman Islands national record and a Cayman Islands Swimming Association (CIASA) record. She finished her 200m backstroke swim in 2:17.78.

Also at the Solberga indoor facility, Matthew Somerville swam a personal best in the men’s 50m freestyle with 27.19 seconds.

The shooting teeam is racking up the medals.

Shooting also delivered a bunch of medals. William Campney won silver in the IPSC Standard Division individual event and another silver in the team event with Ales Cevela. Campney also won bronze in the IPSC Open Division, and teamed with Cevela again to win silver in the team competition. Silver was also won for the Cayman Islands by Eddie McLean and Andrew Schirn in the Olympic Skeet Team Open event.

It was a dominant day for both the men’s and women’s basketball teams.

Khailan O’Connor scored 23 against Gibraltar.

The women faced Gibraltar in a high intensity game that could have been mistaken for a final. Both teams brought their ‘a-games’ with defensive pressure being a hallmark of the game that Cayman Islands won 93-79. Hannah Parchment top-scored with 24 points, Khailan O’Connor had 23 and Guiesha Smith had 21. Next up is a semi-final early Thursday against Menorca (4:15 a.m. Cayman time).

The men won their third straight of the competition and stormed into the semifinals with a 62-point win over Jersey (102-40). Davion Cotterell top-scored with 20 points in a balanced attack. Samuel O’Garro had 15, Jorge Ebanks 14 and Shaad O’Garro 13. They play their semifinal later on Thursday.

In beach volleyball, Stefania Gandolfi and Heather Thompson finished fourth in group play and move on to the semifinals against the pair of Magda Kralikova and Vanessa Ruiz Bravo of Menorca. That game is 5:00 a.m. in Cayman. A spot in the finals later in the day beckons. Gandolfi won gold two years ago when she teamed with Jessica Wolfenden.

Cayman’s other team of Marissa Harrison and Ileann Powery were fifth in pool play.

Stefania Gandolfi and Heather Thompson are in medal contention.

In golf, the men’s team of Tracy Moore, Joel Dodson, Michael Wight and Payten Wight slipped one spot on the leaderboard Wednesday to seventh of 18 teams. Payten Wight is ninth in the individual competition after two rounds with a two-day stoke total of 150 (76, 74). Michael Wight is 19th, Joel Dodson 26th, and Tracy Moore 44th of 74 golfers.

Gymnasts are also having a good Island Games. Igor Megalhaes and Sami Peene are through to finals on Friday. Megalhaes on the parallel bars, high bar and pommel horse, and Peene on the beam.

In tennis, Kevin Fawcett lost in the men’s singles round of 16 to Rob West of Guernsey – 4-6, 7-5, 1-0 (3). In the senior plate round of 16 Callum Theaker lost to Reagan Matthews of Isle of Wight in another tough match – 6-4, 6-7 (5), 0-1 (8). Fawcett and Theaker were on the losing end of a men’s doubles round of 16 match to a pair from Guernsey.

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