Back on the ice

Bishop’s Falls wins sec­ond straight provin­cial ti­tle

Advertiser (Grand Falls) - - Front Page - BY MATT MOL­LOY matthewl­mol­loy@ya­

In an in­tense men’s provin­cial cham­pi­onship broomball clash, Bishop’s Falls edged ri­val Cor­ner Brook 2-1 in over­time to claim its sec­ond con­sec­u­tive provin­cial ti­tle.

Tyler Trem­blett scored a power-play goal while a Cor­ner Brook player was in the box for a heav­ily dis­puted board­ing penalty.

De­spite their ar­gu­ments, the call stood and Bishop’s Falls made good on the three-on-two over­time power play to claim vic­tory on home ice.

As­sis­tant cap­tain and long­time broomball com­peti­tor Gary Pardy couldn’t have been hap­pier for his team, adding cap­tur­ing the ti­tle on home ice was ic­ing on the cake.

“There’s noth­ing bet­ter when you can do it at home in front of a crowd like we had here to­day,” said Pardy. “We had a great crowd for to­day’s game, and there were more peo­ple here than we’ve ever seen for a game of broomball.

“Even though the sport is los­ing num­bers over­all, here in Bishop’s, it’s still a hub for broomball in the prov­ince along with Cor­ner Brook and Happy Val­leyGoose Bay.

“To do this in front of a group of broomball sup­port­ers, as well as fam­ily and friends, you couldn’t ask for any­thing bet­ter than this.”

The men’s side had three com­pet­ing teams — Bishop’s Falls, Happy Val­leyGoose Bay and Cor­ner Brook, while the women’s side saw four— Cen­tral, Western, Happy Val­ley-Goose Bay and Twin Towns.

De­spite only see­ing three teams the com­pe­ti­tion was strong, es­pe­cially in an in­tense fi­nal. Pardy said that’s usu­ally the case.

“Broomball is a com­pletely dif­fer­ent game to play than it is to watch. Be­tween us and Cor­ner Brook, it’s like that ev­ery year,” said Pardy. “It’s us and them, it’s back and forth, and I’ve been in­volved with this sport for about 17 years, and Cor­ner Brook dom­i­nated us for years. We’ve had their num­ber for a few years now, so the tide has turned a lit­tle bit. It’s al­ways gritty, it’s al­ways rough and it seems like we al­ways go into over­time. This is the best broomball you’re go­ing to see in At­lantic Canada.”

In over­time, Bishop’s Falls took its time or­ga­niz­ing the play be­fore Trem­blett even­tu­ally scored. When asked if the team worked on their three-on-two power plays, Pardy said it came down to the fact the play­ers on the team know each other so well.

“When it comes to prepa­ra­tion, a lot of the core members of our team have been play­ing to­gether for 10-12 years,” he said. “We’ve been to na­tion­als and a lot of guys have played at the world tour­na­ment, so we’ve been con­stantly pre­par­ing over time.”

Although the fe­male con­tin­gent from cen­tral didn’t see the same suc­cess as their male coun­ter­parts, just hav­ing a pres­ence at provin­cials was rea­son enough to cel­e­brate.

Leanna Paul took the lead in form­ing the team and her ef­forts re­sulted, in part, in her re­ceiv­ing the cov­eted Golden Heart Award at the end of the provin­cial event.

It wasn’t an easy task form­ing the team, as it con­sists of play­ers from across this large re­gion. Get­ting prac­tice time was an is­sue, and thank­fully for the women, the Bishop’s Falls men’s team invited them out to prac­tice with them.

De­spite the geo­graph­i­cal chal­lenges, the women com­peted in Bishop’s Falls over the week­end, and af­ter los­ing in the semis to the even­tual champs from Happy Val­ley-Goose Bay, left the tour­na­ment feel­ing de­ter­mined to grow the sport even more and to con­tinue hav­ing fun.

“The first goal we had was to have fun, and our sec­ond goal was to play our hard­est,” said Paul. “We all started play­ing broomball in Bishop’s Falls and Bot­wood, and then ev­ery­one moved away. We have girls from ev­ery­where around cen­tral, and we all love to play the game.”

A sec­ond women’s team from Cen­tral had also planned to com­pete at provin­cials, but plans fell through in the end. How­ever, if members of the other planned Cen­tral team that had to back out con­tinue to play, that’ll only add to the num­bers of women that en­joy play­ing the sport of broomball, which is ex­actly what Paul and her team­mates want to see.


Members of the Bishop’s Falls men’s broomball team that cap­tured the provin­cial ti­tle on Satur­day in­clude: (back row, from left) as­sis­tant coach Kirk Mc­Don­ald, Gra­ham Edi­son, Luc Smith, Jon Snow, Jor­dan Drover, Scott Mills, Hunter Budgell, Keith Decker, Gary Pardy, coach Gordie Pen­ney; (mid­dle row, from left) Cody Tay­lor, Ron­nie Pen­ney, Stephen Drover; (front row, from left) Steven Paul, Jeremy Drover, Jor­dan Pen­ton, Lu­cas Tem­ple, Tyler Trem­blett, Jor­dan Pen­ney and Mike Bursey. Miss­ing from photo are Keith Cantwell, Chad Barnes and trainer Gary Pardy Sr.


Leanna Paul of Team Cen­tral, right, bat­tles Tina Comb­den of Happy Val­ley-Goose Bay dur­ing their semi­fi­nal con­test on Satur­day.

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