Blyth Bantam Girls Ice broomball team bring home provincial gold - Feb. 15, 2018
BY SHAWN LOUGHLIN
The Blyth Bantam Girls Ice team is the champion of the province after a tremendous showing over the weekend in Barrie at the year-end tournament.
Coach Casey Boven said that the team has grown quite a bit over the course of the season, but came together when it mattered over the weekend.
The team’s tournament began on Friday when they played the other Bantam Girls team from Blyth, defeating them by a score of 2-0.
After playing a team they were very familiar with, the girls then took on a team they hadn’t played against all season: the Ottawa Thunder. The locals were able to win that game by the slimmest of margins: 1-0.
The win against Ottawa propelled the girls into the double-elimination gold medal game as the undefeated team.
They took on Mildmay, losing the first game in overtime and setting up a winner-take-all final game for the provincial championship.
Blyth would win the gold medal game by one goal, waiting until there was one minute left in the game to score the goal that would earn them the gold medal.
Boven said the games were all entertaining and could have gone either way, with all of them being close contests.
When the season started, Boven said he wasn’t sure that the girls would end their year with a gold medal around their necks.
The team welcomed plenty of new players at the beginning of the season he said, including some girls who had never played broomball before.
“At the start of the season there were some players who were pretty green, pretty new to the sport,” he said. However, as the season continued on, the team continued to gel and the new players learned the sport and became very productive members of the team.
“They showed a lot of heart and determination,” he said. “We’re all pretty proud of the girls.”
Boven said he had played broomball for a number of years, but when his daughters decided they wanted to get involved, it made sense that he would coach, saying he was going to be there anyway. If he could teach the girls a thing or two, he said, that would be a bonus.
The team had a good season, but winning gold at the year-end provincial tournament is definitely the highlight, he said.