Elijah Smith scores gold, bronze at school hockey tourney

Perhaps next year the Elijah Smith Eagles should split into three teams and go for the sweep.

Perhaps next year the Elijah Smith Eagles should split into three teams and go for the sweep.

The Whitehorse school won gold and bronze at the Whitehorse Elementary Hockey Tournament at the Canada Games Centre on Jan. 25.

The Eagles No. 2 team took first with a decisive 5-0 win over Christ the King, the defending champs, in the gold medal game. The Eagles No. 1 team picked up third with a 2-1 victory over the Jack Hulland No. 2 team in the bronze game.

The Eagles had “soul” and a diet of champions, said head coach Robin Fairburn.

“We were also fuelled by Smarties, pizza, chips, and I think it might have been the Twizzlers that put us over the top,” said Fairburn.

“We had Twizzlers?” said player Zachery Godin, clearly flabbergasted he missed out on those.

Elijah Smith, which didn’t win a medal last year, won in the final with two goals from Nolan Matthews, two from Carson Fraser and one from Nevaeh Webb. Goalie Nigel Charlie backstopped the team with the shutout.

“We had a meeting beforehand and we were completely on board with we were going to rotate the lines — fair time, fair play,” said Fairburn.

“We were passing a lot more than the other team and we never gave up,” said Godin. “We rotated the lines every minute or so and I think that also helped.”

The Eagles No. 2 team advanced to the final with a 2-1 win over fourth place’s Jack Hulland with goals from Matthews and Webb.

Elijah Smith’s No. 1 team downed Jack Hulland with goals from Conner LaBar in the bronze game. Gavin McKenna scored for Hulland.

Both Eagles teams went undefeated in five games — each 15 minutes long — in the round robins, before 20-minute quarter- and semifinals, followed by 30-minute medal games.

While Jack Hulland was edged from the podium, the team did receive the Cleanest Locker Room Award.

Ten teams representing five Whitehorse schools and one from Teslin competed in the 13th annual tournament. Teslin Community School was “overwhelmingly” voted to win the sportsmanship award by other teams and officials.

Contact Tom Patrick at tomp@yukon-news.com

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