12 Days of Triumph: No better tonic for Tokyo than wheelchair basketball win over USA

Canadian Paralympic Committee

December 14, 2019

It was Canada's sixth consecutive gold-medal game appearance at the Parapan Ams


For this holiday season, we will be celebrating some of our favourite sport memories from throughout the year. Canada’s Para athletes achieved a lot in 2019, and we will be remembering one performance each day for 12 days. 

Canada’s women’s wheelchair basketball team introduced its latest 1-2 punch in the sport in its gold medal and Paralympic Games qualifying performance at the Parapan American Games in Lima this past summer.

Kady Dandeneau of Pender Island, B.C. and Arinn Young of Legal, Alta., were scoring machines in Lima, which concluded with a thrilling 67-64 victory over the USA in the final on August 30.

The 29-year-old Dandeneau, who only took up wheelchair basketball in 2015, contributed a match-leading 25 points and 10 assists in what she called a “dream final’’.

“I’ve come a long way, that’s for sure. Back then I could barely move a chair, so the idea of me being the one on that spot in this final was a million miles away.’’

Young played a critical role, too, with 20 points in the final. She concluded the tournament as the leading scorer with an average of 24.4 points per game. She was also first in three-pointers, second in field goal percentage, and fourth in assists.

Dandeneau led in field goal percentage at 63.8 and was in the top-10 in rebounds, assists and blocked shots.

It was Canada’s sixth consecutive gold-medal game appearance at the Parapan Ams. It also won gold in 1999 and 2003, and silver in 2007, 2011 and 2015. Canada needed a Top 2 finish in order to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games next year. 

Prior to the Parapan Ams, Canada scored another huge victory as it beat the reigning world champion Netherlands 54-52 in an exhibition contest held in Toronto in June.

Besides the big wins, the Canadian women accomplished another big goal in 2019: setting doubts in the minds of their top rivals heading into a Paralympic season.

12 days of Triumph: Brent Lakatos
12 days of Triumph: Brian McKeever 


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