The Bancroft I.D.A./Red Eagle Family Campground midget B girls travelled to Brampton on the weekend for the OWHA All-Ontario Provincial Championships representing Region E of Ontario’s top 24 teams. The Jets made a collective goal to improve upon their league championship weekend results to advance out of their pool and make the top 12 midget B teams of Ontario. Not only did they advance – they played with heart and focus – and went undefeated in round robin play to secure first in their pool. Their efforts secured Bancroft the second seed overall going into the elimination finals with a bye to the quarter finals representing Ontario’s top eight teams.
In game one of their round robin play on Friday afternoon the Jets opened the tournament with a gritty effort against the Ancaster Avalanche. Kenndal Marsden tied the game late in the first after Ancaster had taken a 1-0 lead midway through the period. Katie Funk tied the game at 2-2 in the second period again after the Avalanche had taken an early 2-1 lead in the second frame. The Jets continued to battle Anacaster and midway through the final period Kenndal Marsden netted the winner to give Bancroft a much needed first win to get out of the gates.
In game two on Friday night Bancroft faced off against the Georgina Golden Hawks. A win would secure their advancement out of their pool in their round robin play. Marsden and Funk continued their scoring touch as they peppered the Georgina tender sniping five goals to lead the Jets past the Golden Hawks. Kenndal Marsden opened the scoring midway through the first to give Bancroft a boost but Georgina tied the game late in the period at 1-1. Katie Funk and Marsden both found the twine in the second period to give the Jets a 3-1 lead. The Golden Hawks showed their frustration and started to unravel in the third period taking undisciplined penalties and giving Bancroft some power play opportunities. This sparked Bancroft’s confidence resulting in another goal by Funk and Marsden (for the hat-trick) in the third period as the Jets powered their way to a 5-1 win.
In game three on Saturday morning the Jets faced off against the also undefeated Lambton Attack. Bancroft held a +1 goal differential in their match-up with Lambton. A win by either squad would give them the advantage of being the critical number one seed as both teams headed into elimination play. After two hard-fought scoreless periods Katie Funk gave the Jets a boost with a 1-0 lead early in the third period. The Attack continued their “attack” and on the very next shift capitalized on a defensive zone breakdown to tie the game at 1-1. Bancroft never lost their focus and late in the third period Kenndal Marsden finished off a rush down the boards and snuck a game-winning 2-1 tally past the Lambton net-minder to give the Jets an undefeated record in pool play. After calculations for the top 12 seeds for first and second place seedings Bancroft’s record and goal differential gave them the second place seed for elimination play including a bye to the top eight quarter finals.
In the quarter-final do-or-die game the Jets met the Mount Forest Rams in an evening match-up with the winner advancing to the medal round on Sunday where they would compete for gold silver or bronze depending on the final four semi-final results. Bancroft and Mount Forest both exchanged scoring chances throughout the hard fought contest.
Katie Hoover kept the Jets alive making many key saves throughout the tightly contested battle. After three scoreless periods the game went into sudden death five-on-five over-time. A winner would be decided by the five-on-five sudden death format no shootout. Again both teams exchanged chances to try to break the deadlock but were stoned by the tenders holding their fort at their end of the ice. With less than a minute left in the overtime and a break to flood the rink the Rams (who made it to the gold medal final against the powerhouse – Kapuskasing Jaguars) ended the nail-biter game off a bouncing puck that was poked into the Bancroft net after a Mount Forest winger broke free to track down the elusive bouncing puck ending the emotionally charged contest.
A wonderful year midget B girls. Your desire to compete your focus to improve your heart to overcome and above all your collective team play helped make this year a huge success. Our goals were achieved make it to the midget B All-Ontario Provincial Championship and earn a spot in the league championship weekend. The results did not earn us any gold medals but the golden moments we created and experienced this outstanding year will be memories we will never forget! Thanks to our graduating seniors – Ella Hedley Katie Hoover Erin Kavanaugh Jamie Little Kenndal Mardsen and Danielle Sunstrum and all the best for our returning and new players next year.
Special thanks to our team sponsors – Bancroft I.D.A and Red Eagle Family Campground. Your support is greatly appreciated. Also from our team staff a heart-felt thank you to our collective midget B team – our players our parent volunteers parents and especially our fans who all cheered us on and supported us throughout our great season. Thank you everyone.
Submitted by Dan Marsden