You can’t find a more inspirational person than Haley Wickenheiser when it comes to women’s athletics.
She has set the bar when it comes to Women’s Hockey and is a role model for many young athletes. Attending the Haley Wickenheiser International Women’s Hockey Festival is more than about playing hockey, it is an educational and empowering experience for all the girls involved in the tournament.
The Campbell River Bantam Hurricane Girls were no exception.
They faced a tough North Shore Avalanche team who were fresh off their big Sooke Tournament win from last weekend. The opening game found the Hurricane’s losing a close 2-3 game after opening the scoring with goals from Jessica Grant and Lisa Lloyd. The Avalanche answered back with a goal in each period to take the tournament opener.
The close game against the Avalanche inspired the local Campbell River girls to raise their game, knowing that they could compete with some of the bigger teams.
Their second game against the Tri City Blues was a one sided affair, as the Hurricanes had a five goal first period with goals coming from Callie Ann Massee, Lloyd, Grant, Rebecca Manson and Haley Hunter Goal assists coming from Julia Mercer and Rylee Nelson. Cassidy Bellavance, Hunter and Alyssa Palmer rounded out the goals in the later periods while goalie Jadylin Spooner continued to frustrate the Blue’s players, not allowing a single goal.
This big win set the tone for the next game against a physical Vancouver Angels team. The River girls manage to score a goal in each period to take the game 3-1, securing a spot in the semi-final game.
Goals coming from Mercer, Kylie Scammell and Carrissa Jochimski. Setting up the plays were Kate Johnson and Lloyd. With each game the Hurricane girls gained momentum and confidence and began to believe they could win the tournament.
Coach Guy Germyn gave a motivational speech just before the semi-final game and the girls cruised through with 6-1 victory over a Vancouver team.
This win would put them in a final against none other than the North Shore Avalanche who received a bye into the final. The Campbell River girls had a few hours to recuperate and get focussed for the big game. The team was game ready and it was a battle, with the local side scoring early in the first period with a snipe from Manson. Nelson and Bellavance added two more in the first period to take a 3-0 lead.
The second period found the local side playing short handed for much of it as the squad were penalized for their tough physical play. Killing off the penalties and a rock solid effort in net by Spooner only further inspired the girls to go for gold.
The score would remain 3-0 through the second and third periods to seal the win for the Hurricane girls. Coaches Dennis Bellavance, Guy Germyn and Chris Jochimski could not have been more proud of the character shown by the girls throughout the entire tournament.