Mi­nor success

Hockey sea­son to cli­max with pro­vin­cial tour­na­ments next week

The Compass - - ORTHTE - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER THE COM­PASS

Play­ers and coaches with the Bay Arena pee­wee Rovers are head­ing into the A di­vi­sion pro­vin­cial tour­na­ment next week on a high note.

The Rovers cap­tured the in­au­gu­ral All-New­found­land pee­wee league cham­pi­onship March 17 in Glover­town, de­feat­ing teams from Gan­der, Clarenville and Cor­ner Brook.

Rovers play­ers took two of the three in­di­vid­ual awards. Kyle Pet­ten earned the league’s most out­stand­ing for­ward award, while Zachary Ben­nett was named top de­fence­man.

The mo­men­tum will serve the Rovers well as they pre­pare to wel­come some of the top pee­wee-aged tal­ent in New­found­land and Labrador on their home ice in Bay Roberts.

From April 1-3, the Rovers will be chal­lenged to bol­ster a medal count this year that also in­cludes a gold medal at the Mary Brown’s In­vi­ta­tional in Gan­der.

Also vy­ing for the pro­vin­cial A ban­ner will be teams from Cor­ner Brook, and three teams from the St. John’s area — Com­pusult Wild­cats AA, the Hick­man Mo­tors Ice­men AA and the Uni­ver­sal Cor­po­rate Wear Light­ning AA.

This year’s success by the Rovers pee­wee A team is not unique to Bay Arena mi­nor.

In all, teams rep­re­sent­ing the as­so­ci­a­tion col­lected an im­pres­sive 17 medals in tour­na­ments held through­out the 2012-13 mi­nor hockey sea­son. The medal break­down is as fol­lows: • gold — 11; • sil­ver — six; Those num­bers do not in­clude play­ers from Bay Arena mi­nor who picked up medals play­ing with three Whit­bourne-based teams — Tri Pen un­der-15 fe­males (gold, sil­ver), Tri Pen un­der-20 fe­male (sil­ver) and Tri Pen pee­wee AAA (sil­ver).

Bay Arena mi­nor pres­i­dent Brian Drover chalks up the success to the hard work of the young ath­letes.

“They’ve kept their in­ter­est and kept their nose to the grind­stone,” he said.

It was the as­so­ci­a­tion’s first year with 10 all-star teams.

What makes the as­so­ci­a­tion’s success that much more im­pres­sive is that many of the teams have found success with­out a lot of games.

With pro­vin­cial tour­na­ments only a week away, Drover said all teams are busy get­ting ready for the high point of their sea­sons.

Not only is the Bay Arena host­ing the pee­wee A tour­na­ment, but the as­so­ci­a­tion’s ban­tam B team will host the ban­tam E pro­vin­cial tour­na­ment from April 4-6.

CeeBees

CeeBees mi­nor also had a suc­cess­ful year. The ban­tam A team had a month-long run that saw the squad cap­ture two gold and two sil­ver. Over­all, the as­so­ci­a­tion brought home 17 medals: • gold — six; • sil­ver — eight; • bronze — one; Four fe­male play­ers from CeeBees mi­nor and eight from Trin­ity Pla­cen­tia mi­nor were also mem­bers of the Bay Roberts-based Rover­ines un­der-20 fe­male team that re­cently cap­tured the pro­vin­cial ban­ner in Bay Roberts.

CeeBees mi­nor pres­i­dent Wendy Pen­ney said the home tour­na­ments at the S.W. Moores Me­mo­rial Sta­dium in Har­bour Grace have been “run very smoothly.”

CeeBees’ teams have been suc­cess­ful on the road this sea­son.

The CeeBees are host­ing two pro­vin­cial tour­na­ments — midget D and atom D.

nmercer@cb­n­com­pass.ca

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