Local students step to the line
Alayna Fournier of St. Frances takes part in the Delhi-La Salette Knights of Columbus Council Free Throw Championship on Wednesday. Fournier, 12, won her second straight division title. JACOB ROBINSON/Simcoe Reformer
Stepping up to the free throw line in front of a jam-packed but silent gym isn't easy, Dylan Vanschalkwyn just made it look that way.
The Teeterville Public School student entered the Delhi-La Salette Knights of Columbus Council Free Throw Championship at St. Frances on Wednesday and promptly drained 12 of 15 baskets to capture the 12-year-old boys division.
Vanschalkwyn's score was so good that he topped all 40 shooters from the ages of 9-13 that took part.
“I got into as much of a rhythm as possible,” he said.
Vanschalkwyn said he didn't pay much attention to the crowd, or the fact a throng of competitors and their parents from four schools – Teeterville, St. Frances, Delhi Public and La Salette – were on hand.
Instead, his strategy was simply to “just take my time and do as well as I can”.
All division winners, Vanschalkwyn included, will be invited to take part in the 'district' championship Feb. 11 at Sacred Heart School in Langton.
Now holding the hot hand, Vanschalkwyn doesn't plan on changing anything while preparing for the next round.
“Not really, I'm going to just keep practising,” he said.
While Vanschalkwyn was putting on a show, so too was the team from St. Frances. The Falcons used home court to their advantage by winning five of the ten divisions which resulted in the overall title.
“It was good to see that we won and succeeded,” said Alayna Fournier, 12, of St. Frances.
Fournier and teammates Ryan Hale (9), Sophia Sym (9), Jackson Smith (13) and Kirsten Kramer (13) each captured their respective divisions. The race for the overall banner was a dead heat between Delhi Public and St. Frances until Smith and Kramer put the home school over the top.
Fournier said getting past the nerves is all about focus.
“It's sort of scary because everybody is watching you but after a while, once you get a few baskets, it gets better,” she offered.
This is the third time Fournier has won her division to go along with trophies in 2014 and 2016. There is no secret formula for success, the youngster said.
“I just take the shots and hope they go in,” Fournier added.
Other girls division winners were Avyree Sherman (10) and Samantha Davis (11), both of Delhi Public.
Other winners in the boys division were Teeterville's Mateo Mungal (10) and Brady Daradics (11) of Delhi Public.
'Free Throw Winners St Frances Jan 26 011'
St. Frances hosted the annual Delhi-La Salette Knights of Columbus Council Free Throw Championship Jan. 26. The winners were (back row from left) Dylan Vanschalkwyn (12), Alayna Fournier, (12), Kirsten Kramer (13) and Jackson Smith (13). Front row, Ryan Hale (9), Sophia Sym (9), Mateo Mungal (10), Avyree Sherman (10), Samantha Davis (11) and Brady Daradics (11).