U16B Etobicoke Stingers Win Southern Region Championship Gold!, News, U16, 2015-2016 Season (Etobicoke Ringette)

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U16B Etobicoke Stingers Win Southern Region Championship Gold!
Submitted By bill on Wednesday, April 6, 2016
The Southern Region Ringette Championships were hosted in Paris/Brantford April 1-3, and featured a single U16 group containing 6 tough teams.  Etobicoke Stingers worked hard, and played clean (less than half the penalties of our opponents) through 5 games, including a nail-biting 1-0 semi-final (our goalie's first shutout of the season), and a last second unbelievably thrilling Gold Medal Championship win that none of the players, coaches or parents will ever forget!

The first game of the round robin was against a tough Cambridge team.  We had played them 5 times during the year, winning 3 and losing 2 including a 6-0 loss to them in the first game of our last tournament.  This time we came away with a convincing 5-2 win to get the tournament off to a great start.

Game 2 of the round robin saw us face Hamilton, who we had faced 4 times during the year, going 3-1 against them.  Again the girls came away with a convincing 5-2 win, getting us to 2-0 in the tournament.

Game 3 was the final game of the round robin, where we faced a very tough Caledonia team.  During the year we played them 5 times, going 1-3-1.  We played a great game, dominating ring possession and shots, but Caledonia has an amazing defense and goalie, and we ended up losing this game 2-1 to finish the round robin in 3rd place (Richmond Hill undefeated in first, and Caledonia in 2nd also with a 2-1 record).  Our goal was scored by Alaiyah on a quick shot after a beautiful pass across the front of the net from Maddie.

Game 4 was the semi-final, and we faced Caledonia again - this time for the right to play for gold in the championship game.  Again the game was an amazing defensive struggle, scoreless in the first half, but our dogged determination and hard work kept the ring in their end the majority of the game, and we got another goal from Alaiyah (another great pass from Maddie) to win 1-0.  There were more scary breakaways from Caledonia, but Isabelle stopped them all to earn her first shutout of the season - what perfect timing to get us into the Gold medal game!

The Gold Medal game was against undefeated Richmond Hill (RH).  We had never beaten RH during the year, losing all 3 time we played them.  The girls played another amazing game, with Isabelle in top form in net, and a bit of luck on our side.  We scored the first goal of the game after Alaiyah and Jordana rushed down the ice together, Alaiyah's pass attempt to Maddie across the front of the net went off an RH defender's stick and into the net.  Three minutes later, Jordana neatly picked the ring off an RH player as they were trying to leave their zone - a quick pass to Maddie who shot, then got her own rebound and shot again to score giving us a 2-0 lead!  RH did not give up, and scored 2 goals in the 2nd half to tie it up.  With less than 2 minutes remaining, we took an uncharacteristic 2 penalties (RH had 9 penalties in the game - we only had 3), and were playing 5 on 3 with Gold on the line.  With 20 seconds left, RH got a faceoff in our zone with only Kira, Nicole and Aviva to stop them (with Isabelle of course).  In the ensuing scrum, Kira picked off a pass right in front of Isabelle and shot the ring down the ice.  An RH defender recovered, but was pressured by Aviva and on the attempt to pass it back into our zone, the pass was again picked off - this time by Nicole who shot the ring up to the mid-boards.  Aviva hustled to the ring and with 5 seconds left Nicole crossed the RH blue line flanked by 3 RH players.  Nicole hits the breaks, and as the 3 RH players skate by she gets the pass from Aviva.  With the last 3 seconds ticking off the clock, Nicole crosses the RH red line with the entire RH team chasing her as the buzzer sounds.  The refs call 4-in against RH, and we are all (including both coaches) surprised to learn that any 4-in penalty in the last 2 min of a game is an automatic penalty shot!!  Coach Derek gives the ring to Aviva, and with the entire rink on the edge of their seats Aviva accelerates from centre, waving the ring from side to side, makes a slight deek to the goalie's left, then lifts a shot over the goalie's right elbow for the Gold Medal winning goal!!

Certainly a moment, and game none of us are ever likely to forget - thanks to all the players, coaches and parents for a great season and an unbelievably thrilling final tournament!

Aviva Penalty Shot
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