Dalton Hertz went from being a gamer to being at the top of his game.
The flight sergeant with 155 Air Cadets in Sault Ste. Marie placed second in the male youth division at 2014 Cadet Biathlon Provincial Championship.
The competition drew 85 competitors aged 12 to 18 from Thunder Bay to Windsor to Cornwall.
Hertz, with a time of 42:07, will now represent Team Ontario at the cadet national championships in Martock, N.S., in March.
“My skiing was probably the best (of) all season,” said Hertz on Sunday afternoon. “Great wax. Fast snow.”
This will be the second time the Grade 12 student at Superior Heights Collegiate and Vocational School has advanced to the nationals. He was in Valcartier, Que., in 2013.
“I’m very happy that I get the opportunity to compete and move on to the nationals,” said Hertz. He wants to finish in the top five.
Hertz has competed in biathlon for five years. His friend, Brett Davie, piqued his interest with a biathlon video game. That led Hertz to honing his cross-country skiing and marksmanship in real life.
Austin Olar, 14, of 2310 Army Cadets in the Sault and Jessie Gravel, 17, of 696 Air Cadets in Blind River, also advanced to the nationals.
It’s Olar’s second time representing Team Ontario and Gravel’s fourth.
“A little dusting” of snow slowed the course at Algoma Rod and Gun Club for relay races on Saturday. But conditions were faster for individual races on Sunday, says Capt. Roy Harten, unit public affairs representative, regional cadet support unit central.
“It made for a nice, fast course,” he said.
Race organizers gave updates about Canadian athletes at 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.
Jean-Philipe Le Guellec, a former cadet, placed fifth in the 10-kilometre men’s sprint on Saturday.
A medal update was given Sunday morning.
“They were kind of interested in that – as most Canadians are,” said Harten.
“They were pretty ecstatic that we’re up a few medals already.”
Canada won one gold, two silver and a bronze as of Sunday.
Race results. Communities where athletes are from are listed when known:
Junior division, individual
1. Piaper Veinotte, 33:48;
2. Madeline Long (Iroquois Falls), 38:52;
3. Alanna Majzik, 39:14.
1. Nicholas Bisson (Casselman), 27:08;
2. Austin Olar (Sault Ste. Marie), 28:49;
Braden Lohnes (Owen Sound), 29:05.
Senior division, individual
1. Emileigh Binet (Orleans), 44:26;
2. Emily Valentini (Newmarket), 49:32;
3. Alexandra Paquette (New Liskeard), 50:04.
1. Andrew Ladouceur (Aurora), 39:21;
2. Dominik Tessier (Orleans), 42:58;
3. Oliver Gervais (Orleans), 47:20.
Youth division, individual
1. Charlotte Nettie, 38:43;
2. Jessie Gravel (Blind River), 45:55;
3. Theresa Erdenberger, 46:10.
1. Trevor Kiers (Burk’s Falls), 40:13;
2. Dalton Hertz (Sault Ste. Marie), 42:07;
3. Spencer Weaver (Owen Sound), 42:43.
1. Spencer Weaver, Braden Lohnes, Nicolas Nyenhuis, 1:04:51;
2. Connor McNally, Johnathan Goderre, Devlyn Lohnes, 1:05:56;
3. Dominik Tessier, Arthur Smith-Windsor, Marc-Andre Binette, 1:09:21.
1. Starr Perry (Sault Ste. Marie), Callie Wagner (Pembroke), Krysten Walknshaw (North Bay area) 1:34:57;
2. Miranda Mueller, Brenna Rutherford, Alanna Majzik, 1:36:04;
3. Rebecca Cournoyea, Abigael Lohnes (Owen Sound), Emily Valentini, 1:38:45.
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