Stress-filled Sunday for Sudbury U14 ringette crew
by Randy Pascal
The Sudbury U14A Provincial Ringette team came within a hair of returning with gold from their first tournament of the season, settling for silver
medals at the Oshawa Storm Ringette Association tournament a few weeks back.
Competing in a five team pool, the Sudbury crew fell 7-3 to Nepean in their opening encounter, as Alexis Pilon, with a pair, and Avery
Blanchard scored for the locals.
Their frustration over that loss may have been evident later that evening, as the northern ladies whallopped Waterloo 7-0, as Megan Watson showed
the way with a two-goal effort.
Lexi McMurray, Patricia Deschenes, Blanchard, Cydney Tinkham and Pilon all found the back of the net once each, as Sudbury prepared for
another two-game day on Saturday.
Facing West Ottawa, Sudbury jumped out to a 3-0 lead, doubling their opponents 4-2 as Blanchard netted her third and fourth goals of the tournament.
Joining her on the scoresheet were Kaitlyn Hinksman and Emily Baxter-Brown.
The locals closed out round robin play with a good, old-fashioned shootout, playing to a 9-9 tie with Whitby. Blanchard doubled her tournament output
with a four-goal performance, while the remainder of the team scoring was much more balanced.
Erika Poirier, Jessica Willis, Baxter-Brown, McMurray and Pilon were all solo marksmen, as Sudbury finished second in the standings. Matched up
against West Ottawa in the semis, Sudbury received three goals in the final period from Blanchard, the last with just 13 seconds to play, forcing overtime,
and called upon her one last time to drill home the game-winning goal in overtime for a 4-3 win.
Despite the emotional drain of that game, Sudbury sat deadlocked at 3-3 halfway through their gold medal encounter with Nepean, eventually dropping a
5-4 decision. Kylee Lapalme, Blanchard, Deschenes and Poirier handled the offense in a losing cause.
The remainder of the Sudbury lineup (those not yet mentioned) includes goaltenders Katrina Locking and Jordan Caldwell, as well as skaters
Hannah Niemi, Amanda Tocholke and Katie MacIsaac.
The team is coached by Melissa Lapalme, with Marc Pilon (ass't coach), Melanie Pilon (trainer) and Tammy Willis all providing
a helping hand. Ringette will be at the forefront, locally, on the weekend of November 27th-28th-29th, as the Sudbury Invitational Ringette Tournament -
2015 takes place at both the Countryside and Cambrian arenas.