Ice Chips & Canoe Quips

Local curling club represents!

This past Saturday, two teams from the Providence Bay Junior Curling program participated in an U15 Bonspiel at the Idylwylde Curling Club in Sudbury. The team of Parker Johnston, Sarah Joyce, John McLean and Cordelia McLean (ages 6-8) took part in the “Little Rocks” division of the event. They played two three-end, half-sheet games. They won one and lost one. The team of Spencer Johnston, Eric Wahl, David Joyce and Liam McLean (ages 9-10) participated in the one-day, full-sheet division of the event. They played four four-end games and ended up with a record of 1-1-2. This was the first bonspiel for many of these curlers and they displayed true sportsmanship and were wonderful representatives of their club. Congratulations as well to all of the tireless work that coach Angela Johnston.

MMHA Playoffs

The Manitoulin Minor Hockey playoffs are mostly finished but here is one early update on a few battles. In novice, the Little Current Flyers hosted a wonderful MMHA playoff tournament event. Taking home the A championship were the M’Chigeeng Thunderbirds with father/son coaching combo Jim and James Panamick at the helm.

The coaches said the tournament result was a true team effort. They fully believe player development at the novice age requires the whole team embracing small area play and individual skill development.

The host, Little Current Flyers, kept the B championship the title at home after a series of competitive games over the weekend.

In early bantam playoff news, both semi-final series went the five-game distance. Little Current and Mindemoya were set to go to battle to decide who is the best of the MMHAA. A lot of credit should be given to the MMHA and the Island associations for their hard work in making hockey happen for the kids on Manitoulin.

Island Lady Wolf impressive

After finishing three points out of the playoffs in their hyper competitive LLFHL (Lower Lakes Female Hockey League) Bantam AA Central division, Mindemoya’s Delaney Bridgeman and her Sudbury Lady Wolves AA Tier 1 teammates faced the North Bay Ice Boltz for the right to represent Northern Ontario in the provincial playdowns. In game one of a ‘three game, first to four points’ playdown format, the SLW girls found themselves leading 2-1 well into the third period when an undisciplined head contact penalty behind the play left them short-handed for four minutes. North Bay evened the game just eight seconds into the first two minutes. The Sudbury side managed to kill the subsequent two minutes and the game wound down to a 2-2 tie.

In game two, the SLW side again jumped to a 1-0 lead, only to have NB fight back to tie it as a coaching mix-up left the girls with only four skaters on the ice in an even strength situation. In the 3rd, NB capitalized on Sudbury’s undisciplined play and went ahead by one with a power play marker. Inside five minutes the girls had to kill yet another penalty, and as time wound down the Sudbury girls were applying pressure and pulled their goalie for the extra attacker. A deft pass found one of SLW’s better shooters right in the slot when a mystery whistle halted play. Sudbury was deemed to have sent the extra attacker on before the referee felt the goalie was within a reasonable distance from the bench, the scoring chance was negated and the faceoff moved to centre. Regaining control and removing the goalie, legally this time, ate up the remaining time and the SLW side was fell 2-1.

AAA update

Greyson Brewer-Case and Kohyn Eshkawkogan’s Minor Peewee AAA Nickel City Sons began the first round of playoffs against the North Bay Trappers this past weekend. After a 4-1 win in game 1, they took a 2-0 series lead with a 5-2 win. 

Rogers Hometown Hockey

Although adopted to Manitoulin, Reggie Leach made the trek back home to Manitoba to help showcase the Peguis First Nation on Roger’s Hometown Hockey recently. Reggie and his son Jamie are the only Indigenous father/son duo to both win the Stanley Cup.

Reggie still holds a NHL record of 19 goals in the playoffs and is one of only five individuals to win the Conn Smythe (the NHL’s MVP of the Stanley Cup playoffs) trophy on a losing team. Of the five winners, he is the only non-goaltender!

Over the years, Reggie and Jamie have held Shoot to Score hockey camps and an NHL alumni game Manitoulin. Their commitment to helping grow the game is to be applauded.

Reggie states he is very proud of his NHL career but states he is even more proud of the work he does today with Indigenous communities and their young hockey players.

Belated NOSSA note!

Congratulations to the Manitoulin Secondary Mustangs’ junior girls who finished third at NOSSA. Co-coach Neil Debassige describes their push to be the best volleyball team of Northern Ontario. “They fought hard in their first match losing a close one 2-1 to Franco-Cite (Nipissing). Being a little deflated after that tough loss they battled a strong College Norte-Dame from Sudbury but lost two straight. However, even though they lost their first set of the final match against Notre-Dame-du-Sault and were down seven points in the second set they composed themselves and got to work to dig themselves out of a hole to win the next two sets finishing 3rd overall at NOSSA. They had a great year and are looking forward to preparing in the off season.

The team featured: Chloe Peltier, Whittier Gauthier, Autumn Deschenes, Sophie Hietkamp, Darci Debassige, Madison Skippen, Jordan Bailey, Aysia Francis-Debassige, Noel Noakwegijig, Mikayla Cafferty, Katie Chapman, Sabrina Shamess, Nicole Cress, Jasmin Colwell and coaches Neil Debassige and Steve Doane.

A good sport is good for sports