just over 24 hours in the town of Delhi, the Home Hardware LL#1 Novice's had
played five games of hockey with such determination and intensity, it had the
parents on the edge of their seats for the whole weekend.
To say they were exhausted would be an understatement. As the tournament began, I was asked by some
of the locals "where is Elmvale, I've never heard of it". So I explained it was a quiet little town
North of Barrie. My words paled in
comparison to the actions of those 7 and 8 year olds. As the first game
started, I began to wonder if this was the same bunch of kids who had been
struggling with consistency of late. The
coaching staff was left in awe as those kids played one of the best games we
had ever seen.
The following three games provided an entertaining atmosphere reserved only for playoffs. The parents were equally rambunctious cheering their encouragement for all to hear; again creating quite an atmosphere for a novice game. The offence was lead this weekend by what can only be called the Big Three; Jackson C, Anthony M and Braeden B, who provided some edge of your seat rushes and dominant scoring prowess.
Not to be outdone in the excitement category, Wyatt A and Nathan B decided it might be fun to get in on the act by both potting their first goals of the season, much to the delight of the crowd. What's a game without a little sibling rivalry when Avery C showed her little brother that she too has a nose for the net, scoring a well earned goal. Although they didn't score, Maya S and Koston M provided some tenacious forechecking throughout the weekend and even had a goal called back when the referee lost sight of the puck.
On that point, Myah V may not have scored, but with partner Carter H, were so stingy on the point the other teams were turned back at almost every chance and when they weren't, they were stopped by the bulldog William V who recorded his first shutout of the season. Jake M was just as stingy during his game between the pipes allowing just one goal against while also scoring a goal. In the final game the kids, (tired and exhausted from all the hockey and swimming), began the way they had started; battling at every corner and then taking the lead early in the second period. They held that lead until late into the third period when the hockey gods reared their ugly heads when a clearing attempt went off on of our own players into our net. Although exhausted, the kids kept fighting only to have another lucky bounce find the back of the net, handing Elmvale the defeat.
They gave everything they had all weekend and even though they lost, they won the admiration and respect of the capacity crowd. A massive thanks goes out to all the players for all their hard work and to the parents for being so supportive all weekend.
A special thanks goes to Coach George for not only keeping the kids ready to go, but also as our team sponsor. Your generosity is greatly appreciated and almost never recognized, thank you for all you do. Also, thanks to the coaching duo of Coach John and Coach Michelle who have the ability to motivate the kids and keep them motivated throughout the entire weekend. As head Coach, I must say I have never been so proud of all involved, it was a huge success and they were humble in victory and classy in defeat.
One last thing to the people who have never heard of Elmvale before, they have now and they won't soon forget.