The Central Alberta U19 AA Sting Ringette team hosted their annual tournament in Lacombe over the weekend.
The Sting had a winning record in the tournament going 3-2, but unfortunately were not able to make it into the medal round.
“We started off by beating a team called Zone 5 5-3 and then the loss that hurt us was against Spruce Grove 4-3. We out shot them badly, but they scored with eight seconds left,” Head Coach Shawn Wagar said, adding Spruce Grove’s netminder played a fantastic game throughout.
With the only outlier loss being a tough one against Calgary, the Sting finished off the tournament winning a pair of 4-2 games against Edmonton and Zone 2.
“It was a good weekend overall and we had all three divisions playing with U14, U16 and U19,” Wagar said. “There was teams from all over the province, it was well organized and we do this every year at Christmas around this time. It tends to bring a lot of people out.”
Wagar said his team was looking for a better finish, but were pleased to still be in and around the Top 5 best teams in Alberta going into 2019.
“We get back at it with league and then we have a tournament in Calgary in the middle of January, then provincials and then hopefully nationals in PEI,” he said.
One important aspect of the tournament is being able to play games in Lacombe — with roughly half the team comprised of girls from Red Deer and the other half from Lacombe.
“We play out of Penhold, so it is pretty neat for a lot of our Lacombe girls because a lot of grandparents and friends get to come out,” Wagar said. “Overall it was a good weekend — we just ran into a hot goalie at the wrong time. Credit to her.”
The next big test for the Sting will be the Golden Ring tournament in Calgary, which is a precursor to their Provincials — which could write the ticket for the Sting to play at Nationals on Prince Edward Island.
“We will continue on with our fundraising. We will have a comedy night, because PEI will be pretty expensive for us,” Wagar said. “This is the first break in the schedule. We have been busy with a tournament in Calgary, a tournament in Regina, a tournament in Edmonton and our tournament all in the time of three months.
“We always give them Christmas off. They have some training stuff they can do but essentially we go hard and then give them the time off before coming back and prepping for the end.”