AP Photo/Petr David Josek - Canada Basketball - IJF/Emanuele Di Feliciantonio
AP Photo/Petr David Josek - Canada Basketball - IJF/Emanuele Di Feliciantonio

Weekend Roundup: Team Canada books 3×3 Paris 2024 berth, Warner wins for 8th time at Hypomeeting

Canadian sports enthusiasts witnessed several historic moments over the long weekend.

Team Canada has qualified for an Olympic 3×3 basketball tournament for the first time. Damian Warner added to his historic run of success at the prestigious Hypomeeting in Götzis, Austria while Ceili McCabe set a national record in the women’s steeplechase in Los Angeles.

Judoka Christa Deguchi won her fourth world championship medal, moving her closer to securing her first Olympic spot. Back at home, a trio of divers earned key wins at the national trials to lock up their qualification for Paris 2024.

And that was certainly not all! Read on to catch up on all the action you might have missed:

3×3 Basketball: Canadian women secure ticket to Paris 2024

Team Canada will compete in an Olympic 3×3 basketball tournament for the first team after the women’s national team booked their spot at the FIBX 3×3 Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Debrecen, Hungary.

READ: Team Canada’s women’s 3×3 team qualify for Paris 2024

On Sunday, the team of Katherine PlouffeMichelle Plouffe, Paige Crozon, and Kacie Bosch, defeated Hungary 21-10 in the third-place match.

The Canadians were down to their last chance after falling 18-17 to Spain in a closely contested semifinal match. Despite this setback, the Canadians rallied through a must-win situation to secure the third and final qualification spot for Paris 2024 that was up for grabs this weekend.

“We’re just so grateful, our team, we have so much joy and gratitude to be here,” said Katherine Plouffe after the win over Hungary. “We believed. There’s no easy games here, Hungary’s a great team.”

The Canadians had a good showing throughout the tournament. They cruised past Italy 21-8 in the quarterfinals after finishing atop Pool B with a perfect 3-0 record with wins over Chile, Lithuania, and Czechia.

READ: Team Canada’s women’s 3×3 team makes push for Paris while prioritizing passion

Swimming: Team Canada revealed for Paris 2024

The Olympic & Paralympic Swimming Trials, Presented by Bell, came to a climactic conclusion on Sunday evening with the announcement of the 29 swimmers who will be part of Team Canada at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

READ: Team Canada welcomes 29 swimmers for Paris 2024

Summer McIntosh qualified in five events — 200m IM, 400m IM, 200m butterfly, 200m freestyle, 400m freestyle — highlighted by the shattering of her own world record in the 400m individual medley. The women’s team also includes: Canada’s most decorated Olympian, Penny Oleksiak; defending Olympic champion in the 100m butterfly, Maggie Mac Neil; four-time Olympic medallist backstroker, Kylie Masse; as well multiple medallists from the World Aquatics Championships such as Sydney Pickrem, Mary-Sophie Harvey, and Ingrid Wilm.

The leaders of the men’s team are Josh Liendo, who smashed his own national records in the 100m butterfly and 50m freestyle events at the trials, and Finlay Knox, the reigning world champion in the 200m IM. Yuri Kisil and Javier Acevedo are both headed to their third Olympic Games.

Diving: Three athletes qualify for Paris 2024

At the Canadian Diving Trials in Windsor, Ontario, athletes were confirmed for Paris 2024 in the individual diving events for which Canada had previously qualified quota spots.

Caeli McKay won the women’s 10m platform event to claim Canada’s lone Olympic spot in the event. McKay had earned the quota spot with her bronze medal performance at the 2023 World Aquatics Championships. She had already earned an Olympic team nomination in the women’s 10m synchro event with partner Kate Miller, who was the runner-up in the individual event at the trials.

In the men’s 10m platform, Nathan Zsombor-Murray was the winner of the trials, taking the second of Canada’s two Olympic spots in the event. Rylan Wiens had been pre-selected for nomination following his fifth-place finish at the 2023 World Aquatics Championships in which he scored 489.20 points. Both men have also earned Olympic nominations in the men’s 10m synchro event.

Canada’s lone spot in the women’s 3m springboard will go to Margo Erlam, who won the trials by almost 15 points over veteran Pamela Ware. It came down to the very last dive, on which Erlam earned scores of 8.5 and 9.0 from the judges to secure the top spot on the podium. The 21-year-old has represented Canada in several World Aquatics World Cup and Grand Prix events, as well as the 2022 World Aquatics Championships and 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Judo: Deguchi and Klimkait share world championship podium again

World number one Christa Deguchi won her fourth career medal at the IJF World Championships as she took silver in the women’s 57kg event on Monday in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. She took part in an epic final against Mimi Huh of South Korea — one that lasted more than 12 minutes.

Just a minute and 40 seconds into the match, both judokas had received two penalties. A third would end of the match. But they went past the four minutes of regulation and more than eight minutes of overtime without another score. After the equivalent of three consecutive bouts, a fatigued Deguchi was penalized for non-combativity, giving Huh the gold medal.

On the other half of the draw, world number two Jessica Klimkait had been defeated by Huh in the semifinals. But she bounced back to win her bronze medal bout against Israel’s Timna Nelson Levy. It is Klimkait’s third straight bronze medal at the worlds following her gold in 2021, which qualified her for Tokyo 2020 where she won a bronze medal.

Athletics: Warner wins again in Götzis, McCabe smashes steeplechase record in L.A.

Damian Warner won the decathlon for the eighth time at the Hypomeeting in Götzis, Austria — one of the most prestigious combined events competitions on the track and field calendar. The reigning Olympic champion posted a final score of 8678 points over the two days of competition.

After the first five events on day one, Warner was in second place with 4585 points, trailing leader Simon Ehammer by just 16 points. On Sunday, the 34-year-old Canadian closed that margin to two points after a fast 110m hurdles and then took the lead with a strong throw of 46.41m in the discus. After the next two events, Warner had increased his lead to 223 points, meaning he didn’t need to stress too much in the 1500m to finish it off.

At the USATF Los Angeles Grand Prix, Ceili McCabe won the women’s 3000m steeplechase in 9:20.58, breaking the national record in the event while achieving the Olympic entry standard by more than 2.5 seconds. She is the only Canadian woman to get the Olympic entry standard in that event thus far. McCabe has represented Canada at the last two World Athletics Championships.

READ: Damian Warner strikes gold at Hypomeeting, Ceili McCabe sets national record

Also in Los Angeles, Camryn Rogers finished third in the women’s hammer throw, hitting 75.56m. Jean-Simon Desgagnés won the men’s 3000m steeplechase in 8:16.49. Aaron Brown was third in the men’s 100m in a season best time of 10.23. Lucia Stafford achieved the Olympic entry standard in the women’s 1500m.

Over in Morocco, Canadian secured two medals at the Diamond League meeting, Andre De Grasse finished second in the men’s 100m. His time of 10.19 seconds was 0.08 back of winner Emmanuel Eseme of Cameroon. Sarah Mitton collected a third-place finish in the women’s shot put with a best throw of 19.36m. She still owns the world leading mark for the year with the 20.68m she threw last weekend.

Meanwhile, Brendon Rodney was at the Golden Grand Prix in Tokyo where he finished second in the men’s 200m in a time of 20.42 seconds.

Hockey: Canada takes control of Group A at IIHF World Championship

Canada is in the driver’s seat in the race for first place in Group A with a hard-fought 3-2 win over Switzerland on Sunday. Improving their record to 6-0, the Canadians are currently leading the group with 17 points. In their game against Switzerland, all three goals came on the power play.

Sunday night’s outcome hinged on Swiss forward Kevin Fiala’s second period kneeing major and game misconduct, which opened the door for Canada to score twice with the man advantage.

On Saturday, in one of the most-anticipated preliminary round matchups, Canada rallied to beat Finland 5-3. Brandon Hagel scored the winner in the third period as Canada fought back from deficits of 2-0 and 3-2 to secure the three points.

Canada will finish off the round robin on Tuesday against host Czechia, who were sitting second in the group with 15 points. The quarterfinals will take place on Thursday.

Beach Volleyball: Melissa and Brandie win AVP Huntington Beach Open

Melissa Humana-Paredes and Brandie Wilkerson won the AVP Huntington Beach Open, defeating Americans Taryn Kloth and Kristen Nuss 23-21, 18-21, 15-13 in the final.

Though this tournament does not impact Olympic qualification at all, it is a great confidence boost for the Canadians to defeat the team currently ranked second in the world.

Rugby: Canada wins Pacific Four Series

Canada’s Women’s Rugby Team defeated New Zealand for the first time ever on Sunday, earning a 22-19 comeback victory over the reigning Rugby World Cup champions. That win moves Canada into second place in the women’s world rankings — the highest they have been ranked since November 2016.

The Pacific Four Series is for rugby union, featuring with 15 players per side. But the Canadian roster included several athletes who are regular competitors in rugby sevens and are aiming to be part of the Olympic team this summer. Among them are Olivia Apps, Fancy Bermudez, Pamphinette Buisa, and Sophie de Goede.