Colleen Parker submitted this article to baytoday:
The North Bay Paramedics/CTS Canadian Career College Junior A ringette team was in action this past weekend in the Agnes Jacks invitational ringette tournament.
They won their division, defeating Nepean 8-3 in the final Sunday afternoon.
Coming off a provincial bronze medal performance last season as a Tween A team, the locals came out flying for Friday’s opening contest against Nepean.
In the opening period, the WFRA squad looked strong scoring six times before the end of the half. Nepean rallied back in the second, scoring three times, but it wasn’t enough to stop a 7-3 West Ferris victory.
Saturday proved to be a very long day for the team with three games. In the 8 a. m, match, Ferris met a strong Upper Ottawa Valley team, hosts of this year’s provincial A championships. The UOV team were also the Tween A gold medallists in 2003.
In a very physical match-up, WFRA took an early lead and carried it to the end of the first half. UOV came out strong in the second, moving ahead by three goals before getting into penalty trouble. This was a very physical contest with UOV taking 20 penalty minutes to four for West Ferris. In the end, the local squad rallied back to a 5-5 tie in the dying minute of play.
The afternoon game saw the Paramedics meet the Timmins Junior A’s. Whether it was the curse of the new jerseys or a case of nerves, the host West Ferris team struggled in the first half, finally finding the net close to the break and scoring two unanswered goals in 35 seconds. Despite getting off to a slow start, they picked up the pace in the second half and came out on top of a 5-3 decision.
The late-night match-up saw a tired West Ferris team face their rival Valley East. Although they struggled to find their skating legs and were mostly out-muscled, they still managed to hold the Sudbury team to a one-goal game. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite enough to get the top spot in the round-robin or the advantage of meeting Nepean, the fourth place finisher, in the semi-final. The Paramedics would again have to face Upper Ottawa Valley in their semi-final match-up.
Sunday, the team got off to a quick start with two goals early in the game followed by a late-period marker in the first. After a break and pep-talk by their coach, the OAV team found the net early in the second. However, outstanding team play from Ferris kept the score sheet showing only one goal at the buzzer while the locals racked up another three in the third to finish with a 7-1 romping of the Valley.
The final game between West Ferris and Nepean was a rematch of Friday’s opener. The WFRA team, runners up in this tournament in both 2002 and 2003 were hungry to finally get the gold. Nepean struck early with the first goal but the rest was all West Ferris. Despite the speed and good play shown by their opponents, the local team dominated the entire game and skated away with an easy 8-3 win to capture the top medal.
Team coach Karen Cook feels that her team is on track this season. Although many of the players are underage, they are holding their ground well against bigger, older and stronger teams.
The will again see action in two weeks at the Nepean Invitational tournament. Their goal this season is to represent Northeastern Ontario at the Provincial A championships in Upper Ottawa Valley/Pembroke.
The team is made up of 12 - 15 year old players: Tanesha Hamelin (Goal), Sarah Trottier, Courtney Whitwell, Janelle Martin, Amanda Storie, Brianna Belzile, Drew Elliott, Jaimie Fitzer-Ross, Sabrina Seymour, Melissa Closs and Alexandra Parker. The team is coached by Karen Cook, Rolly Storie and Kaz Lutecki. Nancy Trottier is the trainer. Barry Elliott is the manager.