Inferno, Furies earn CWHL split
They started with a spark and ended with a fizzle.
Yes, it was a split weekend for the Calgary Inferno but still a joyous one.
And with 33 points, they remain atop the Canadian Women’s Hockey League standings thanks to a similar split by Les Canadiennes de Montreal, the second-place team sitting on 31 points.
The joy came Saturday night when the Inferno topped against the Toronto Furies in their fourth annual Start the Spark game in support of mental health awareness and the Do It for Daron initiative.
Members of the Sheldon Kennedy Child Advocacy Centre and ticket sponsors-of-the-game HMC Lawyers were on hand for the ceremonial puck-drop at WinSport.
Retired Inferno player Jessica Campbell, who started the team’s annual event four years ago, was also on hand for the puck-drop. This was also a special night for the Inferno’s Rebecca Leslie, who started the DIFD initiative with teammates eight years ago, shortly after her friend Daron Richardson committed suicide at the age of 14.
“Do it for Daron is an amazing cause, and the biggest thing is talking about it, and anyone can be helpful in any single way, said Inferno defender and third star of the game Kacey Bellamy. “And I think that being supportive to talk about any type mental health issue is the biggest thing, and it’s really great to be able to be on the ice today and supporting that cause.”
On the ice, Brianne Jenner, Kelty Apperson, Bellamy — on a power play — and Katelynn Gosling all scored for the host Inferno in a 4-1 stop of the Furies.
With 2:45 left in the third period, the Furies’ Renata Fast managed to find the back of the net beating goaltender Annie Belanger topshelf, keeping the Inferno from earning a shutout.
The Inferno’s fire dwindled a little on Sunday afternoon in Okotoks, where the Furies repaid them with a 3-0 loss.
Roy Bowlby, the vice-president of coach and player development for the Okotoks Minor Hockey Association was on hand for the puck-drop in acknowledgment of bringing the CWHL game to the town.
It was Fast, in the second period, opening the scoring on Inferno goaltender Lindsey Post. Fourteen seconds into the third period, Shannon Stewart scored on a pass from Natalie Spooner. And then Spooner scored her own goal to round out the afternoon tallies.
Nine Inferno players head to Toronto for next Sunday’s CWHL all-star game (11:30 a.m.) led by the all-star captain as voted by the fans, Brigette Lacquette. The other Inferno talents playing in the all-star game are goaltender Alex Rigsby, defence Kacey Bellamy and Halli Kryzaniak, forwards Brianna Decker, Zoe Hickel, Brianne Jenner, Rebecca Johnston and Blayre Turnbull.
“It will be an exciting weekend to play with an against some of the league’s best competitors,” said Inferno captain Johnston. “We’re looking forward to what should be a great game.”