The Young Guns female selects were in tough at Oceanside Place on Sunday, but the spirit sure shone through.
“Great effort,” Young Guns co-coach Mike Bray confirmed when asked about his team’s outing against the Bantam Breakers from down Island.
The Young Guns female selects compete in the Peewee division for U14s with players aged 11-13. Most of the Breakers are two and three years older.
Based out of Nanaimo/Oceanside, there are three locals on the roster of 16 — D-girls Julia Cook and Baylee Kivela, and forward Natalie Tisdelle.
“It’s actually a team that we run in the spring after regular associations end,” explained Bray, adding they start up the first week of March, play four or five exhibition games and as many practices as possible.
They cap it off with a tournament in Vancouver later this month.
This is the second year the team has been together “so most of them have been together before … real good group of kids,” said Bray, adding, “we do it on weekends because we have girls from Port McNeil and girls from Victoria, we even have a girl from Powell River, so we try and do the training on Saturdays and games or practices on the Sunday. We do that every week.
“It’s a big commitment for the parents that’s for sure,” he confirmed, “but it’s good, it just gives them that little bit of extra competition, and the season’s short.”
The players, he added, “have to be pretty passionate about it, and they are, or they wouldn’t be doing it.”
Local hockey mom Shelly Cook is the team’s off-ice trainer.
“She’s been helping the girls out with nutrition, with dry-land that sort of thing. It’s great,” said Bray.
As for Sunday’s trial by fire, “they preformed very well against very tough competition this weekend … they worked hard,” said Bray.
For more information on the Young Guns female selects contact team manager Tina Bray at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two games in Parksville on Sunday against the Vancovuer Ravens in Peewee action.