Crushers lose 5-3, need a Saturday win to keep season alive
ANTIGONISH – The Amherst Ramblers will head home with a chance to put the Pictou County Crushers out of the Maritime Hockey League playoffs.
SUMMERSIDE – The Avon View Avalanche returned home to Windsor, N.S., with the girls’ championship banner from the 18th annual David Voye Memorial rugby tournament.
The Avalanche received a total team effort as all 20 players on hand contributed in Saturday afternoon’s championship game – a 12-0 victory over the North Nova Gryphons.
“It’s a pretty hollow victory if you don’t play all of them (players),” said Avalanche head coach Jim Bryan, whose team had a tournament-best record of 4-0 (won-lost).
Overall, Gryphons coach Dougal MacInnis was pleased with his team’s play in the final. The Gryphons and Avalanche had played to a 5-5 tie in an earlier tournament.
“(It was a) good, close game,” declared MacInnis, whose squad finished with a 3-1 mark. “We had a really good tournament. They played really well.”
A total of 23 senior AAA-calibre teams – 12 boys and 11 girls – from Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia competed in the three-day event, hosted by Three Oaks Senior High School in Summerside.
The tournament is held in memory of the late David Voye, who was a music teacher and a driving force behind the formation of the rugby program at Three Oaks.
“Coming over to the Island, we always know we are in for a challenge,” acknowledged Gryphons head coach Dougal MacInnis, even though his team ended up playing one of their provincial rivals for the title.
Jaclyn Silver and Natasha Williamson scored trys while Katie Giles chipped in with a convert to account for Avon View’s scoring.
“(It was a) hard-fought game, two even teams,” said Bryan. “We got an early break when a girl got a red card at the start.
“We had some momentum, and were able to squeak one (try) in at the start, which let us put them on their heels.
“It was going to be a forwards’ game. We wanted to keep them in tight, and not be doing fancy ball plays. We just wanted to ‘smash, smash, strip the field.’
“It paid off because there were not a lot of dropped balls (considering the weather).
“We just kept coming. With that second one (try), it was nice because we needed to score twice in one kick.”
Bryan praised both teams for playing a hard-fought but clean contest on the wet and muddy Canada Games field at Three Oaks.
“Everyone had a great time,” Bryan commented. “They have a lot of potential, and I’m just hoping they can realize that. . . I’m very proud of them.”
North Nova 29 vs. Westisle 19
North Nova 15 vs. Halifax West 0
Three Oaks 34 vs. Northumberland 0
Northumberland 30 vs. Bluefield 0
Northumberland vs. Hants East (score unavailable)
Semifinal: North Nova 7 vs. Cobequid 5
Final: Avon View 12 vs. North Nova 0
Westisle 20 vs. Northumberland 14
Colonel Gray 21 vs. North Nova 5
Three Oaks 42 vs. Northumberland 0
North Nova 41 vs. Horton 0
Northumberland 12 vs. Cobequid 0
North Nova 10 vs. Lockview 5