Scor­ing for char­ity

Puck drops on Be­cause You Care Ice Hockey Tour­na­ment this week­end

Cape Breton Post - - Sports - BY T.J. COLELLO sports@cb­post.com On Twit­ter: @cb­post_s­ports

A group of well-known hockey play­ers is hit­ting the ice for a good cause this week­end.

The Be­cause You Care Ice Hockey Tour­na­ment will be played at the Mem­ber­tou Sport and Well­ness Cen­tre from Fri­day to Sun­day.

“It’s an easy vol­un­teer ex­pe­ri­ence for (the play­ers) — get out to play hockey and you get to raise money and aware­ness for a cause that touches home for a lot of peo­ple,” said Kyle MacMullin of Syd­ney River, one of the or­ga­niz­ers and a par­tic­i­pant. The 29-year-old for­ward played for the Strait Pi­rates in 2008-10 and the New Waterford Jets in 2007-08.

The event is a sup­ple­men­tary fundraiser for the Be­cause You Care Cup road hockey tour­na­ment that will be held Sept. 16-17 that raises money to pur­chase pri­or­ity equip­ment for the Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Hospi­tal. Since many of the play­ers com­pet­ing this week­end will be away for the hockey sea­son at that time, they’re get­ting to­gether now to help raise funds.

No­table names in­clude for­mer Cape Bre­ton Scream­ing Ea­gles Chris Cul­li­gan and Marc Bour­geois, as well as cur­rent Que­bec Ma­jor Ju­nior Hockey League play­ers Mitchell Bal­mas of the Gatineau Olympiques, Derek Gen­tile of the Que­bec Rem­parts, and Cole Regi­nato of the Saint John Sea Dogs. For­mer Cape Bre­ton Oil­ers for­ward Shaun Van Allen will hit the ice as well. Van Allen played 794 games in the NHL, with stops in Ed­mon­ton, Ana­heim, Ot­tawa, Dal­las and Mon­treal. He was re­cently

named in­terim head coach of the Car­leton Ravens men’s hockey team.

That’s not to men­tion an ar­ray of cur­rent and for­mer univer­sity, ju­nior ‘A’ and ju­nior ‘B’ skaters.

“(The pub­lic) can come out and watch and there’s some real good tal­ent there,” said Jim MacDonald, one of the tour­na­ment

or­ga­niz­ers and a par­tic­i­pant. “Re­ally, the credit goes to all the guys who are in the tour­na­ment. They’re help­ing put it to­gether and I don’t re­ally have to do a whole lot. They’re re­ally good to help out.”

It’s the third year for the tour­na­ment, but the first on ice. The past two years, it’s been a roller hockey tour­na­ment. This year, the Mem­ber­tou arena will be do­nat­ing 13 hours of ice time. Ref­er­ees are be­ing cov­ered by the lo­cal gen­tle­man’s league MacDonald runs, while Cape Bre­ton Bev­er­ages will be do­nat­ing re­fresh­ments for the event.

They’re look­ing to raise $3,000 from player reg­is­tra­tion fees alone. With this week­end’s

tour­na­ment, they’ll raise a to­tal of $7,000 over the past three years.

“It’s good to give back to the com­mu­nity and it’s good for the guys to learn that, so it’s a win-win for ev­ery­body,” said MacDonald.

The five teams were se­lected through a draft by team cap­tains. Play be­gins on Fri­day at 5 p.m.

Af­ter a four-game round robin, the top four teams move on to the semi­fi­nals on Sun­day at 11 a.m. and 12 p.m., fol­lowed by the cham­pi­onship at 1 p.m.

*For a com­plete sched­ule and team ros­ters, see page B4.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

A group of lo­cal hockey play­ers will play in the Be­cause You Care Ice Hockey Tour­na­ment, Aug. 4-6, at the Mem­ber­tou Sport and Well­ness Cen­tre. In front from left are Bryson Mus­grave and Derek Gen­tile. Back row from left are Louie Piovesan, Jim MacDonald, Mitch Bal­mas, Kyle MacMullin and Chris Cul­li­gan.

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