Titans gearing up for title defence in men’s hockey
It took the Tantramar Regional High School Titans men’s hockey team 20 years to reach the top rung and they have no intentions on letting anyone knock them off.
With much of the core team lost to graduation, coach Ernie Austin and his staff will look to a handful of veterans and a group of quick rookies to wear the Titan crest and carry on what has become a hockey team of contenders, year after year. The Titans are the only team to reach the provincial final in each of the past three years so all AA squads from around New Brunswick will be keeping an eye on TRHS.
This Friday night they host the Saint John Greyhounds in an exhibition tilt. The puck drops at 6:45 p.m. The Greyhounds have had a rough couple of seasons but are looking to ice a more competitive team this year.
The Titans forwards consist of vets Justin Vogels, Seth Smith, Dakota Melanson, Riley Estabrooks and Oliver Longpre, with rookies Brady Senior, Jax Wells, Connor Cadman, Eian Cadman, Cory Gould, Colby Tower and Joe Carpenter.
On defence, Jacob Estabrooks is providing leadership along with second-year player Mason Prescott. Jory Parsons, Jesse Estabrooks and Colby Acton round out this year’s rearguards.
Netminder Sam Tower is back for his fourth year and is teaming up with Noah Boyd in the crease.
The team will rely on a hightempo passing game with a relentless forecheck to overwhelm opponents this year.
All minor players wearing their minor hockey jerseys will be admitted free this Friday night.
Curling is a sport people of all ages – from five to 95 – can play and enjoy with its physical and social aspects, according to Dr. Cathy Johnson, who serves on the board of directors of the Sackville Curling Club (SCC).
Johnson outlined the various benefits the game provides for those taking part. She pointed out that while the local three-sheet ice surface is considered a recreational club, it also offers a place for some serious competition.
Over the years it has sent a good number of members to provincial and national competitions, with Heather Smith a prime example as she holds a variety of national honours, including junior ladies and mixed.
And it offers unlimited time for those who join the club, in addition to plenty of tutoring for newcomers. For example, the membership fee for first year members is $129, and rises to $220 for second-year curlers. A full membership costs $275 and the fee is $175 for juniors.
Anyone with time on their hands could spend hours every week either competing or practising as ice is available daily with plenty of instruction as an option.
As usual, Johnson says the number of people actually enjoying the sport locally will be in the 150 range.
And she says the public is invited to visit the club at any time; they can become acclimatized to the game by observing from the lounge or trying a “hands-on” approach.
There are schedules for both men and women in morning draws, as well as other times designated for ladies, men and mixed sessions, along with university students and juniors. In addition, some special matches will be held on Wednesdays, formerly an open day, and some on Sundays.
The sport of curling was first introduced to Sackville in 1895, 124 years ago. It has evolved from a recreational vehicle for the “upper crust” to today, when a good cross-section of the community is involved.
There were 34 members in that first club, each paying dues of $5 and an ice rink was rented for $100 for the season. The first set of stones were purchased that year with each member paying $12.55 for a set.
The following year a new rink was built at Memorial Park and competitions continued there until 1904. At this point a new rink – operated by the Curling Rink Company – was constructed on West Main Street and in 1908 ladies took up the game. The club did not operate during the First World War but resumed in 1927. This building was torn