Penticton’s Fire on Ice female hockey tournament featured nice goals and big saves.
The novice Light Blue Ice Dragons didn’t win a game but had a blast, even when it resulted in a few falls.
“A great experience for them,” said coach Andy Oakes, who patted the organizers on the back for doing an amazing job putting the three-day event together. “They had fun, sang new team chants, hosted a pizza party on Saturday evening. It was a true hockey community event.”
Most importantly for Oakes, he saw improvement in the skills of each player.
“Their overall knowledge of simple concepts is getting better,” said Oakes. “Those teams we played on the weekend, although we lost every game, those teams were beating us by double digits a couple of months ago. Now we’re within a few goals.”
What also stood out about their play was Oakes saw an aggressiveness in regards to chasing the puck, something that isn’t always easy to get across.
Next up for the team is an outdoor game with the Kelowna Red Rockets at Apex Mountain on Sunday at noon.
Bill Lund, coach of the bantam female recreation Fix Auto Penticton team, said the tournament was fantastic with the division being close among three teams.
“Unfortunately we were on the outside looking in after a slow start,” said Lund, whose group lost Friday night to division rivals Kelowna 4-2. Julia Devito scored both goals.
The team followed that up with their best game against eventual champions Merritt, losing 5-4. Devito pocketed a pair of goals, while Hannah Lund and Morgan Brooks each scored once. Fix Auto hit their stride whipping Kamloops 8-0 as Devito netted a hat trick, Lund scored twice with Adrienne Beresford, Casey Carriere and Faith Fraser scoring once each. Fix Auto won its last game Sunday, another victory over Kamloops, this time 5-0. Devito and Lund scored twice and Beresford added one. MVPs for the four games were Devito, Lund, Fraser and goalie Rowan Knowles, who earned two shutouts.
“After the first game we developed a really strong and aggressive fore check,” he said.
Lund noted a highlight was seeing the team have a great time at the tournament pizza party.
“Have to say though that they are better hockey players than dancers,” he added.
The Peaches Lingerie midget Vees earned a 4-3 win over Kamloops to finish with two wins in four games. Coach Shawn Black said his group faced strong teams in the North Shore Winter Club, a 3-1 loss, and 8-0 to Tri-Cities.
“The girls played really well. They stepped up when we played the stronger teams and they battled hard,” said Black. “I was very pleased with the effort.”
In the loss to NSWC, Lyndell Campbell was set up by Sydney Garnett and Stephanie Lagrange. In the 9-1 rout of Kamloops, Campbell and Andi Main scored twice and Sienna Gabriel, Kelaya Allison, and Sophie D’estimauville added single goals. In the 4-3 win over Kamloops, Gabriel, D’estimauvill, Madevon and Garnett scored.
The midget Vees managed a tie in four games. They faced Calgary for third and lost 5-1 with Sydney Sandrelli scoring the lone goal. In a 4-1 loss to Langley, the eventual tournament winners, May Semeniuk scored the lone goal, while Cedar Carter scored in a 3-1 loss to the Calgary Chaos. Carter then scored twice with Sage Togyi adding another in a 3-3 tie with Prince George.
“Defensively, we played very strong and our compete level for the most part was outstanding,” said coach Shawn Carter.
The tournament attracted teams from Kelowna, Kamloops, North Shore, Langley, Tri-Cities, Merritt, Prince George and Calgary.