It was a true team effort that saw the Minor Peewee St.Thomas Stars win the regional Silver Stick Championship this past weekend in Owen Sound.
“The team really came together and everyone contributed to the teams success” stated head coach Troy Carlson who went on to say “I am so proud of each and every one of the boys for the hard work and determination that they showed over the weekend. For the coaching staff it was a real pleasure!”
The team opened up the tournament with a tie against the Centre Wellington Fusion team. The Stars totally outplayed the Fusion but just could not capitalize on the numerous scoring opportunities which ultimately saw the game end in a tie. Goal scorers for the Stars were Brendan Johnston, Tyelor Goddeeris and Derek Johnston. For his never give up attitude, team play and hard back checking, Brendan Johnston was awarded the MVP of the game. Assists were notched by Ethan Hurst, Devin Robinson-Sareh, Caleeb Schaap, Chase Buchanan and Brayden Latimer
In their second game the Stars faced the Tournament host the Owen Sound Jr. Attack. The Stars lost to Owen Sound last year in the Stars own home tournament final so they had a score to settle which they certainly did blowing out the Attack 4-0. James Allison captured the shut-out and was awarded the game MVP. Caleb Schaap and Brendan Johnson each scored a pair. Assists were notched by Brayden Latimer, Tanner Rickwood, Derek Johnston, Chase Buchanan X 2, Brayden Latimer and Bradley Johnson
Game number 3 saw the Stars face their local league nemesis the London Bandits. With a history of hard fought battles this game would decide who would see first place in round robin play. The stars did not disappoint with a demonstration of their well learned cycling skills the stars cruised to a 4-2 win. Player of the game was awarded to Justin May who played solidly on defence while upfront Brendan Johnson tallied up a hat trick with the assistance of his line mates Brayden Latimer and Bradley Johnson who were on fire all weekend. Chase Buchanan rounded out the scoring notching a single. Assists were notched by Bradley Johnson, Landon Johnstone, James Allison and Tanner Rickwood. The win saw the Stars advance to the semi finals in first place.
The semi final match-up saw the London Bandits facing the Burlington Eagles and the Stars once again facing the Centre Wellington Fusion. Determined to show the Fusion that they were lucky to make it out of their first encounter with a tie the Stars went on to hammer the Fusion by a score of 5-1. A true team effort was put forward which saw Bradley Johnson, Brayden Latimer, Brendan Johnston, Ethan Hurst and Jayden Dunley each notching singles. Assists were notched by Brayden Latimer, Ethan Hurst, and Jayden Dunley. Brayden Latimer’s stellar weekend saw him capture the MVP of this game while Brandon Cooper’s strong play on the point help keep the Fusion at bay.
The championship game saw a rematch between the Stars and the London Bandits. This was an epic battle that truly did not disappoint the fans. The Stars got off to a slow start which the Bandits capitalized on scoring two goals early in the first period. The second period was scoreless until the Stars got on the board with a power play goal by Brendan Johnson late in the period. With both team battling hard the Stars scored the equalizer with just over 6 minutes left in the third on a goal by Brayden Latimer. This goal lifted the Stars spirits and powered them to a third goal again by Brayden Latimer at the 2:51 mark. With the score 3-2 in favour of the Stars they tried to hold on but with the Bandits goalie pulled they manage to score with just 45 seconds left sending the game into 4 on 4 sudden death overtime.
With nerves and emotions high the 4 on 4 battle lasted just 1 minute and 3 seconds when Derek Johnston was able to roof a loose puck top shelf on rebound from a shot from Tanner Rickwood in a scramble in front of the net. Helmets and gloves were sent everywhere as the Stars celebrated. Strong goaltending all game long saw Brady Johnstone received the MVP of the Game. Assists were notched by Derek Johnston X2, Caleb Schaap, Tyelor Goddeeris, Tanner Rickwood and Myles Carlson.
“All I can say is WOW!” said Coach Carlson “I knew the boys could do it! This weekend was really about coming together as a team, believing in ourselves and each other. Many players were asked to play different positions and roles over the weekend and did so unselfishly. Everyone truly contributed.”
With the championship win behind them the Stars now have the opportunity to participate in the International Silver Stick Championship being hosted by the Newmarket Minor Hockey Association January 12th -15th.