Gold-medal games set at Canadian ringette championships

Cambridge, ON – April 1, 2011 – With so much on the line, in a do-or-die situation, the finalists for Saturday’s gold-medal games were decided on Friday at the 2011 Tim Hortons Canadian ringette championships.

At the end of round-robin play in the U16 division, Alberta beat British Columbia 8-1 to earn a bye to the gold-medal game on Saturday. This left Ontario and Quebec to meet, with Quebec getting an indirect assist from Al Pacino in its 6-5 win over Ontario in the U16 semi-final.

Before the game, the Quebec players watched Any Given Sunday, with the coaches using a Pacino speech from the movie as inspiration for the girls.

Even with Quebec trailing 5-3 in the second period, the coaches kept repeating Pacino’s “inch by inch” and the girls responded.

“I just stabbed at the ring and shot it at the net,” said Justine Lapointe from St-Basile-le-Grand, who scored the game-winner to complete her hat trick. “I wasn’t thinking about it. If it didn’t go in, I was just going to pick it back up and start over.”

Quebec is confident going into Saturday’s final against Alberta, a team it beat 4-2 on the first day of round-robin play earlier this week. “I have confidence in myself and in my team,” said Lapointe.

Justine Lapointe and Leah Erwin from Courtice, ON picked up individual achievement awards in the game, while Madison Desrochers from Ottawa, ON picked up the defensive game star award. Officials in the U16 semi-final were Jaynce Gunn from Oshawa, ON and Melanie Stewart from Port Coquitlam, BC. The U16 gold-medal game takes place at 10:00 am (EDT) Saturday.

Quebec downed the host Turbos 6-4 to come out of round-robin play in first and get a bye to the U19 gold-medal game. Alberta and Ontario met in the semi-final. Like she does before every game, Kaylee Whitcroft delivered an inspirational speech. She told the Ontario players that even though the team had lost an earlier match to Alberta in overtime, it could not and would not happen again.

The Ontario players delivered, six of them fresh off a gold-medal win at the Canada Winter Games, defeating Alberta 7-2.

“We all have the same goal in our head,” said Paige Nosal, who scored two goals. “We want that same (gold-medal) feeling again. Ontario will play Quebec in Saturday’s final.
“We’re really going to have to fight for it,” said Nosal. “We beat them 5-4 in overtime (earlier in the tournament). They’re a real aggressive team. They’re bigger than us. We just have to keep our speed up. We’re all very hungry for this.”

Josie Scott from Mitchell, ON and Calgary’s Shaundra Bruvall picked up individual achievement awards in the game, while Sydney Granger from St. Clements, ON picked up the defensive game star award. Officials were Nat Fortin from Limoges, ON and Oshawa’s Rick Daly. The U19 gold-medal game takes place at 3:00 pm (EDT) tomorrow.

The end of the championship round in the NRL division saw Edmonton WAM! beat Ottawa Ice 3-2 to earn the bye to the gold medal game and Calgary RATH, who beat Prairie Fire 5-4 to get a spot in the semi-final against the Cambridge Turbos.

Thanks to a 7-5 win over the Lightning, the Turbos will get a chance to avenge last year’s championship-game loss to WAM!

“I think we have something to prove,” said Jackie Gaudet, who had two goals and an assist as Cambridge took a 7-2 lead and held the charging RATH off down the stretch. “We knew coming in that we would be up against a lot of strong teams.”

The Turbos didn’t lose a game in regulation time all season, but dropped two earlier this week.

“Losing a couple of games, we know we have to work that much harder, even tonight we let them come back,” said Gaudet. "We need to fight to the end, until the buzzer goes."

“(To play in the championship game) is very exhilarating. We didn’t come here to lose. We came here to go for the gold.”

Gaudet and Calgary’s Barb Bautista picked up individual achievement awards in the game, while Mitchell’s Emily Bakker picked up the defensive game star award. Officials were Mario Periard from Rockland, ON and Montreal’s Benoit Ducharme. The NRL gold-medal game takes place at 12:30 pm (EDT) Saturday.

The final games will be webcast live through the Ringette Canada website at www.ringette.ca. All-stars and the NRL Annual Awards will be announced at the closing award ceremony on Saturday night.

Rosters, schedules, standings and stats can be found at the following links:
U16: http://www.leaguestat.com/ringettecanada/crc_u16/en/stats/schedule.php
U19: http://www.leaguestat.com/ringettecanada/crc_u19/en/stats/schedule.php
NRL: http://www.nationalringetteleague.ca/stats/schedule.php?view=day&language=en

More information on the event can be found on the Ringette Canada website at: http://www.ringette.ca/content/Major%20Events/CRC/2011/Main.asp?langid=1
and the Host website here: www.crc2011.ca.

Results for Friday, April 1, 2011 at the 2011 Tim Hortons Canadian ringette championships in Cambridge, ON:

U16 DIVISION
Ontario 8 Saskatchewan 5
Alberta 8 British Columbia 1
Quebec 6 Nova Scotia 3

Semi-final game:
Quebec 6 Ontario 5

Final game to be played at 10:00 am (EDT) tomorrow:
Quebec vs. Alberta

Bronze: Ontario
Round-robin standings for remaining teams:
4. Manitoba
5. New Brunswick
6. Host
7. British Columbia
8. Nova Scotia
9. Saskatchewan

U19 DIVISION
Ontario 5 British Columbia 2
Quebec 6 Host 4

Semi-final game:
Ontario 7 Alberta 2

Final game to be played at 3:00 pm (EDT) tomorrow:
Ontario vs. Quebec

Bronze: Alberta
Round-robin standings for remaining teams:
4. Host
5. Manitoba
6. British Columbia
7. Saskatchewan
8. New Brunswick

NRL DIVISION
Edmonton WAM! 3 Ottawa Ice 2
Cambridge Turbos 5 Richmond Hill Lightning 4
Calgary RATH 5 Prairie Fire 4 OT
Atlantic Attack 4 Goucester Devils 3
Montreal Mission 11 Cyclones de Quebec 2

Semi-final game:
Cambridge Turbos 7 Calgary RATH 5

Final game to be played at 12:30 pm (EDT) tomorrow:
Cambridge Turbos vs. Edmonton WAM!

Bronze: Calgary RATH
Round-robin standings for remaining teams:
4. Prairie Fire
5. Richmond Hill Lightning
6. Ottawa Ice
7. Montreal Mission
8. Cyclones de Quebec
9. Atlantic Attack
10. Gloucester Devils