Lady Pipers Overcome Adversity to Win Play-off Championship
TheAlexander Galt Senior Girls Soccer Team won the ETIAC play off trophy on Wednesday afternoon after they defeated the Stanstead College Spartans 2-1. The win capped off an exciting end to the season, but they had to overcome several obstacles along the way to do it.
As the season began coach Mark Learned was concerned with age and experience as several key Seniors graduated last year so nine junior eligible players made the Senior club this year. The mixture of rookies and returning players gelled as the season progressed and they peaked at the right time.
The team also faced a huge blow one game into the season when all-star keeper Charlene Graham was lost for the remainder of the season and no one with any experience to replace her. The loss of Graham stunned the team as they looked at each other for answers. Veteran striker Sarah Poudrier showed her dedication to the team by offering to go in nets and learn the position. Her drive and determination paid huge dividends, as she was one of the main reasons why they would win in the end.
LastWednesday evening, some of the finest French and English writers living in the Eastern Townships read to a rapt audience in the beautiful Baneen Hall at Bishop’s University.
The stage was tastefully decorated with bookshelf backdrops, and Master of Ceremonies Michèle Plomer flip- flopped between both official languages as she welcomed and introduced the writers. The audience, a healthy mix of francophones and anglophones, appreciated the attention given to both official languages during the event.
The seven writers on the bill, all locals, were enormously varied in both the genres in which they write and the scope of their achievements.
First, we heard from Danish-born Ann Fortier, whose first novel, has been translated from English into 33 different languages, and published all over the world to enormously wide acclaim. The novel has even received a nod from Hollywood, where a screenplay adaption is currently in progress.
traces the story of Julie Jacobs, a young scholar who learns she is descended from Giulietta Tolomei, the historical 14th century woman on whom Shakespeare’s famous play is based. The novel switches between contemporary and historical narrative, and Fortier read an excerpt in which the historical Juliet meets the historical Romeo at what Fortier calls “the original ball scene.”
Fortier’s sophomore novel, is due to be released in 2013.
Next we heard the poetry of Huguette O’Neill, former journalist who has written for both and in Montreal. Ross Murray, Stanstead resident and former owner of the read next. A regular columnist with the
and a contributor to CBC’s and
Murray is well-known to readers in the area, and his funny, poignant vignettes on modern Township life are always a treat. He read two pieces from his 2010 collection
the first a
You’re Not Going to Eat That, Are You? satirical dialogue between Mr. Murray and an overzealous Bell telemarketer; and the second a fictionalized reportage from a customs exile barricaded in Stanstead’s own international No-Mans-Land: The Haskell Free Library.
Following Murray, the tone of the evening became a great deal more lyrical, as Patrick Nicol, two-time winner of Le Grand Prix littéraire de la Ville de Sherbrooke, took the stage, reading from his most recent oeuvre, Les cheveux
The second half of the program featured readings by Plomer herself and Anne Brigitte Renaud, both contributors to
a recent local publication on the physical and cultural history of the eponymous lake.
The audience was also treated to a small scene from George Rideout’s famous play performed by two Bishop’s Drama students. Rideout, who teaches in the Bishop’s Drama department, is the renowned author of many well-known plays, including which was produced to huge acclaim in Montreal and across Canada, and recounts a hypothetical meeting between playwright Michel Tremblay and American Beat writer Jack Kerouac in Florida.
The evening of readings was organized by the Lennoxville Library in celebration of its centennial year. The importance of libraries was stressed by Plomer and the rest of the authors, as places that are invaluable to communities, but increasingly under threat by the rise in popularity of electronic books.
“A library is a place you can still get the real thing,” Fortier commented, referring to the physical books still found in libraries. “It’s a place you can count on—a place you can trust.”
As the season came to an end the girls found themselves in third place and the odds against them as they would have to beat two teams (Massey-Vanier and Stanstead) they had not beaten all year. On Tuesday afternoon they traveled to Massey-Vanier for the ETIAC semi final and beat the Vikings 1-0. Vanessa Stevens scored ten minutes into the game and Poudrier and the Piper defence held off a pressing Viking squad in the second half to claim the victory.
The following day the girls traveled to Stanstead as the underdogs once again and shocked the regular season champions. The two teams hit posts early in the game, before Galt’s Cortney Burnham drilled a shot past a sprawling Spartan keeper just outside the 18-foot box. The Spartans looked to tie the game early in the second half, but Stevens used her speed and kicked the ball out of bounds just before it was about to cross the goal line. However midway through the second half the Spartans finally got the equalizer when Catherine Quirion finally beat Poudrier with a nice shot. With some of the Galt girls looking tired Learned made a few substitutions to get a few fresh legs on the field. The move paid off as Frederique Domon played hero by coming off the bench to score the eventual winning goal with six minutes to play. Defender Carly Standish Wallis played some tough defence throughout the game and especially in the dying minutes as she continuously shut down the Spartan Strikers to preserve the win and championship for the Pipers. Learned said, «it was an emotional win for the girls as everyone bought into the system and played their hearts out.»
The Senior Boy’s Soccer advanced to the ETIAC finals as well by beating Massey-Vanier 4-1 at home on Tuesday. The boys from Galt took control of the game early on and scored twice in the first half off the feet of Brandon Deruisseau and James Murray. Striker Alex Mckinney converted a nice passing play early in the second half to give the Pipers a 3-0 lead, but the Vikings did not go away easily as they scored shortly thereafter to make it 3-1. With five minutes to go in the game Galt forward Mikale Fontaine made history when he scored. Fontaine became the youngest player to ever score a goal at the senior level as a 12 year old. Fontaine’s goal solidified the Piper victory and a trip to Stanstead for the ETIAC play off championship game.
The boys hoped to pull off the upset, but the Spartans seemed to be a little older, stronger and quicker and defeated the Pipers 3-0. The Spartans scored in the first ten minutes of the game and controlled much of the game thereafter. Galt coach Steve Walker said, «the boys have no reason to hang their heads, we had a great season as they played to their potential.» True enough, as the Spartans were the only team they lost to all season.
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Frederique Domon scored the winning goal in the final with six minutes left to play.
Ann Fortier’s first novel, Juliet, was translated into 33 languages.