Light the Lamp wel­comes dancers

The Galaxy Girls take on a new per­sonal chal­lenge

The Compass - - Front page - \is.lewis@cb­n­com­pass.ca

Sea­soned hockey play­ers weren’t the only ones hit­ting the pave­ment for the re­cent Light The Lamp street hockey tour­na­ment, which at­tracted over 100 teams. A group of young dancers de­cided to tem­po­rar­ily trade in their danc­ing shoes for hockey sticks and sneak­ers, all to join in on the fun.

From the stu­dio to the rink, one group of girls took on a per­sonal chal­lenge for them­selves at a re­cent ball hockey tour­na­ment.

The 2018 Light the Lamp tour­na­ment was hosted this past week­end in Bay Roberts, and saw thou­sands of peo­ple come to the com­mu­nity for the week­end-long event to par­tic­i­pate and spec­tate the mas­sive tour­na­ment, many of whom were cheer­ing on teams hail­ing from their home­towns.

Com­mu­ni­ties from across the prov­ince, such as Marystown and Grand Falls-Wind­sor had teams travel to Bay Roberts to take part, with hun­dreds of games tak­ing place be­tween 126 dif­fer­ent teams.

While home­town pride or a pas­sion for hockey were likely the mo­ti­va­tion be­hind many of the teams seen play­ing over the week­end, one team has a bit of a dif­fer­ent story be­hind the jer­seys.

The Galaxy Girls are a nineper­son team hail­ing from the Con­cep­tion Bay North area. Their de­ci­sion to take part in Light the Lamp this year came as a bit of a per­sonal chal­lenge, as the ma­jor­ity of the group have never played hockey com­pet­i­tively, and in­stead pre­fer the feel­ing of danc­ing shoes as op­posed to hockey sticks and sneak­ers.

Of the nine girls, only one – Kayleigh Flynn – is used to the feel­ing of a hockey stick in her hands, as she had just com­pleted her first year in Bay Arena Mi­nor Hockey. Flynn, along­side team­mates Grace Young, Re­becca Tut­tle, Clair MacDougall, Kay­dence Brown, Ju­lianna Boone, Brid­get Franey, Jenna But­ler and Lily Mercer, are all dancers at Cather­ine’s Dance Stu­dio in Bay Roberts. The de­ci­sion to make the step from the stu­dio to the rink came as some­thing of a per­sonal chal­lenge for the girls, and one they’re glad they took on. All friends

The Galaxy Girls spoke with The Com­pass about the team and their ex­pe­ri­ence at Light the Lamp.

“We’re all friends, and we just de­cided to make a team and try it out,” said Brid­get, who spent her time at Light the Lamp in goalie gear for the Galaxy Girls.

While Brid­get said she ini­tially heard about the tour­na­ment from her fa­ther, Dean, many of the other girls said they first caught wind of the event from Kayleigh.

“We thought it would be fun,” Brid­get added.

While they all agreed the tran­si­tion from dance to ball hockey was a big step, they told The Com­pass the op­por­tu­nity to try some­thing new was ex­cit­ing, and the feel­ing of scor­ing a goal was some­thing they won’t soon for­get.

“Play­ing in the rink was pretty fun – play­ing against other peo­ple was pretty cool, but I re­ally liked just get­ting to hang out and meet new peo­ple” said Grace. “At first, we weren’t scor­ing any goals, but when we did, ev­ery­one started cheer­ing, and that felt re­ally good. I al­most lost my voice.”

This year’s Light the Lamp tour­na­ment was the first of many for the fu­ture of Bay Roberts, with plan­ning al­ready go­ing ahead for the 2019 event. Like­wise, 2018 will not be the only year the Galaxy Girls make an ap­pear­ance, as the team cheered ex­cit­edly when asked if they would be set­ting foot back into the rink next year.

Next year though the girls are look­ing at chang­ing their team name, hop­ing to in­cor­po­rate their dance back­grounds into it next time.

We’re all friends, so we thought it would be fun.

— Brid­get Franey

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

The Galaxy Girls took a shot at hockey af­ter spend­ing many years to­gether in the dance stu­dio. Pic­tured from left to right are coach Shelby Bat­ten, Brid­get Franey, Ju­lianna Boone, Kay­dence Brown, Lily Mercer, Re­becca Tut­tle, Grace Young, Kayleigh Flynn, Claire MacDougall and Jenna But­ler.

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