The ulus begin to add up for Nunavut

Tally stands at nine and counting

James McCarthy | Nuuk, Greenland
March 9, 2016

It’s Day Three of the 2016 Arctic Winter Games and Nunavut’s athletes have a bit to smile about.

The team has won nine ulus to date – four silver and five bronze – but they’ve come close to gold.

James McCarthy/NNSL photo Curtis Willie of Arctic Bay grimaces as he tries to hold on against the NWT's Dalton Beamish during the junior boys stick pull at the 2016 Arctic Winter Games in Nuuk, Greenland on March 8.

James McCarthy/NNSL photo
Curtis Willie of Arctic Bay grimaces as he tries to hold on against the NWT’s Dalton Beamish during the junior boys stick pull at the 2016 Arctic Winter Games in Nuuk, Greenland on March 8.

Curtis Willie of Arctic Bay had a chance to snag a gold ulu as he made it all the way to the final of the junior boys stick pull. but he had to settle for silver, losing the final match to Jedryk Dendys of Yukon. Lionel Willie, also from Arctic Bay, was in the open men’s stick pull and had to settle for a bronze ulu.

“I just didn’t get a good grip on the floor.”
-Andrew Bell

Andrew Bell of Arviat is back for another round of Arctic sports and he isn’t disappointing at all. Bell, a favourite every year, was right in the thick of things in the open men’s kneel jump on Tuesday, but he came up second-best by a mere 2 cm in a silver ulu-winning effort.

Bell won another silver ulu in the open men’s hand reach in a contest where he was actually tied with Matt Jacobson of Yukon at 5′ 6”. It came down to misses and it was one too many for Bell in the end as he missed twice compared to Jacobson’s one.

Bell said it’s still a bit too soon to say how things will go in the long run.

“There are some familiar faces here so I’m sure it will be a good week,” he said. “I wasn’t too happy with my (kneel) jumps but something goes wrong all the time. I just didn’t get a good grip on the floor and if you don’t get a good grip off the line, it affects your distance at the end. Lots of games still, though.”

Also earning a silver in Arctic sports was Lyla-Marie Taliruq of Arctic Bay, who leaped 94.5 cm in the junior girls kneel jump.