Senior Hockey & Broomball
The 32nd Annual Cree Senior Hockey & Broomball Tournament kicks off on Thursday, December 6, at the Air Creebec Centre in Val-d’Or. One of the premier events on the Cree calendar, this year’s tourney will feature action in seven categories, including Men’s Class A Open Hockey, Class B1 Competitive Hockey, Class B2 Recreational Hockey, Oldtimers 40+ Hockey, Women’s Hockey, Open Broomball and Recreational Broomball, with an anticipated 60 teams vying for prize money expected to be over $70,000.
Deadline for registering teams is Friday, November 30. For more information or to register a team, contact Freddy Schoeneich at Cree Regional Events & Entertainment at 819-825-2648.
The 12th Annual National Aboriginal Hockey Championships will take place from April 28 to May 4, 2013, in Kahnawake, Quebec. As the host team, Eastern Door & North are wasting no time making preparations to defend their 2012 Women’s title. Tryouts for both the Men’s and Women’s squads are scheduled, and interested players at the double letter level, as well as accredited coaches, are invited to take part. Tryouts take place on Friday, December 28 and Saturday, December 29 at the Kahnawake Sports Complex. Registration fee is $50, payable before the first tryout ice session. For more information, contact Kenny Kane at the Kahnawake Sports Complex at 450-638-3311.
Young Cree hockey players continue to make an impact in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey league this season.
After failing to make the cut last season, Mistissini’s Silas Neeposh has earned a regular job patrolling the blue line for the Chicoutimi Sagueneens. Neeposh, who spent time last season with the Midget AAA Kahnawake Condors and Temiscaming Titans, before winning bronze with Eastern Door & North at the 2012 NAHC, has been used largely in a stay-at-home role with the Sags. But he picked up the first goal of his QMJHL career on November 15 as the hometown Sagueneens pummelled the Victoriaville Tigers 7-2.
Waskaganish’s Brett Hester has played a big role in the recent success of the Val-d’Or Foreurs. The club is 8-3-2 in their last 13 games, including a recent successful four game swing through the Maritimes, during which the club posted victories over Acadie-Bathurst, Moncton and PEI, before losing a close match to the #1 nationally ranked Halifax Mooseheads. Hester tallied a goal and an assist during the trip, including the winning goal over Moncton, to go along with 16 penalty minutes.
Hester currently sits among the league leaders in penalty minutes, including multiple fighting and instigator penalties, but that did not discourage sophomore PEI Rocket forward Deverick Ottereyes, a product of Chibougamau, from going toe-to-toe with Hester in a spirited fight when their two teams met on November 17. While Hester landed many of his early punches, it was a blow from Ottereyes that brought Hester to one knee before the two were broken up. Highlights of their battle have been captured by HockeyFights.com. Look for a link on the Nation’s facebook page.
The soft-spoken Ottereyes, who likely opened some eyes with his performance against Hester, a formidable fighter, has otherwise been a steady third line presence for the Rocket. After a dismal season in 2011-2012, the Rocket have shown marked improvement this year, and currently sit second in their division behind Halifax.
Minor Hockey & Broomball Tourney
Part One of the 2012 Cree Minor Hockey & Broomball Tournament took place between November 1 and 4 at both the ACC in Val-d’Or and André Dubé Sports Centre in Senneterre.
In the Atom Hockey Competitive category, the Chisasibi Beavers defeated the Waskaganish Lil’ Wings in the final, 7-6. In Atom Hockey Recreational, the Nemaska Axeman pounded Waswanipi 6-1, to take home the championship banner.
In the Novice Hockey Competitve final, Val-d’Or Agnico Eagles beat Waskaganish Lil’ Renz 7-2, while the Val-d’Or Eagles easily beat the Oujé-Bougamou Lil’ Cree Warriors 10-3 in the Novice Hockey Recreational final. Meanwhile, the Waswanipi Wolf Pack edged out Mistissini in the final of the Youth Girls’ Hockey category by a score of 3-2.
The final of the Novice Broomball saw the Wemindji Lil’ Wolverines win top honours by defeating the Waskaganish Angels by a score of 3-2.