Well done, ladies
There are a number of reasons to get excited about the Waterloo County girls hockey league.
Here are a few.
Great races: Its crowded at the top of both the Tier 1 and Tier 2 standings as we hit the exam break.
Southwood, Sir John A. Macdonald and Elmira are engaged in a three-way fight for in the top division as the Sabres lead the way with 17 points, followed by the Highlanders at 16 and the Lancers at 15.
All three teams have two games two play after the break with Southwood facing Elmira on Feb. 8 and St. David on Feb. 10. Elmira takes on Bluevale on Feb. 14, while SJAM gets Jacob Hespeler on Feb. 8 and Resurrection of Feb. 10.
The Tier 2 race is also a good one, although it looks to be down to Grand River and St. Marys in a two-way sprint for first after a recent slide by KCI.
The Renegades and Eagles are tied at the top with 17 points, but Grand River has played one fewer game.
The Raiders were leading the way until a two-loss skid has them sitting at 14 points.
Grand River has a Feb. 8 game with Waterloo-Oxford and a Feb. 10 tilt with Forest Heights before closing out the regular-season schedule on Feb. 14 against St. Marys.
The Eagles also have a Feb. 10 games with KCI.
Surprises are possible: Based on what Ive seen so far, both St. Marys and Grand River are legitimate threats to make noise when thetop four teams from Tier 2 engage in first-round playoff matchups against Tier 1s bottom four.
If the season ended today, Grand River would face Resurrection in a first-round game and the Renegades beat the Phoenix at a tournament only last week. The Renegades also have a pre-season win over SJAM under their belts.
Grade 9 phenoms: Elmiras Kaitlin Doering was the hotshot rookie last year, piling up the points while playing on a line with fifth-year standout Erin Zach. This year its Grand Rivers Mary Worndl, who is leading her team in scoring while playing with fifth-year linemates Jamie Martin and Rachel Greguol. Worndl was the most exciting player to watch during Grand Rivers 5-2 win over Cameron Heights. Niners are rarely, if ever, a factor in the boys league.
Good sportsmanship: The last couple of boys games Ive seen have been featured far too many incidents after the play has ended. Boysbeing boys perhaps, but it so old. Ive seen girls, on the other hand, who actually slow down and say “sorry” after unintentionally flattening an opponent.
In the boys hockey circuit, the Grand River Renegades made a statement in their first of two tests this week in a 7-2 win over the St. David Celtics.
Brendan Verasamy and Brenton Cossar both scored twice as the league leaders improved to 9-0-1 while the Celtics fell to 7-2.
Head coach Brian Millars squad doesnt get long to enjoy the victory as the boys are back it Wednesday for a 3 p.m Activa Sportsplex showdownwith St. Marys, which improved to 9-1-0 with a 4-1 win over WCI.
Alex Stoody, who had a five-goal game last week, scored a single against the Vikings.
Finally, a huge shout out to the KCI Raiders senior boys basketball team, whichscoreda 51-48 win over the previously perfect Sir John A. Macdonald Highlanders on Tuesday.
Alex Galea had 16 points for the Raiders (7-3) as they negated a 30-point outing by Edem Ame. SJAM dropped to 9-1 with the loss, leaving Forest Heights as the only team with a perfect record. The Trojansgot 15 points from Srdjan Stanivuk and 14from JavonMasters as they improved to 10-0 with a 68-43 win over the Jacob Hespeler Hawks.
Former St. David Celtics basketball star Bryson Johnson continues to light it up for the Bucknell Bison of the NCAAs Patriot League.
He leads his league and ranks 10th nationally in Division 1 three-point field-goal percentage. Johnson has hit 52 of 111 three-point attempts (46.8 per cent) in 19 games.