March 31-April 3 were a busy few days at the South Cariboo Rec. Centre, as 100 Mile House hosted the BC Hockey 2011 Female U16 BC Cup.
The fast-paced tournament featured some of the most talented 14- and 15-year-old female hockey players in British Columbia who, through tryouts held earlier in the six provincial zones, had earned the right to play on their zone team.
Team Fraser Valley took the provincial championship after beating Greater Vancouver 4-1 in the gold-medal game, despite having taken a 9-2 thrashing from the same team earlier in round-robin play.
Okanagan took the bronze medal with a 4-1 win over Team Island, while Team North finished the tournament in fifth place after beating Team Kootenay 7-6 in the consolation round.
Team North included four players from the South Cariboo. Adrianna Johnson, Cassidy Mellott, Shian Remanente and Breanna Uphill all contributed to the success of the team and Uphill notched two assists in the playoff game with Kootenay.
“I was really happy. I was trying so hard in the last game because I really wanted for us to win so we wouldn’t be last.”
Mellott got her stick on a shot and tipped it into the net, says her mom, Cristy Mellott.
“She didn’t get credit. It happened fast and the refs didn’t see it, I guess.”
Team North assistant coach Hazel Massier says her squad gelled right away, despite not having played together prior to the tournament.
“They made it simple for the coaches. They worked hard and never gave up, and got stronger as they played through the tournament. They all worked hard and played their roles well.”
The tournament involved three days of hockey action, which saw the stands filled with spectators throughout.
On Friday evening, players had time to get to know each other at a banquet held in their honour at the 100 Mile Community Hall where the Peter Skene Ogden Secondary School guitar class wowed them with a couple of Justin Beiber songs.
Canlan general manager Josh Dickerson says he’s pleased with how the tournament went.
“We had a great set of volunteers and staff who did an incredible job.”
This was the third high-performance tournament hosted by Canlan in recent years, and Dickerson says it’s something that interests them.
“BC Hockey tries to pick the same venues when they know they can rely on them to do a good job. We’re hoping to host more and will be applying for one for next year.”