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Th e H e a r t b e a t o f t he O t t a w a S p o r t s C om m un i t y

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Young local gymnasts spend upwards of 20 hours a week training, but that’s no hinderance to their love for the sport.

Playing in the under-21 Provincial Women’s Hockey League, 14-yearolds LINDSAY EASTWOOD (left) and SAM COGAN are two of the youngest athletes in the junior hockey loop, but that’s not the only thing they have in common – both are leaving their mark with the Nepean Wildcats.


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By Emily Panetta Sam Cogan and Lindsay Eastwood have a lot in common, and the fact that both girls' fathers initially inspired them to play hockey is just the start. “I always wanted to be a figure skater,” Eastwood laughs, “but my dad wouldn’t let me.” Both girls grew up playing on boys’ hockey teams, so it’s no wonder that both Cogan and Eastwood describe themselves as former tomboys. Cogan made her way through the local minor hockey competitive leagues, playing for the Ot-

tawa Sting and the Ottawa Junior 67’s. “They just treated me like one of the guys,” Cogan says of her former male teammates. “I grew up with them so I got to know them better, and they were always really nice to me.” Eastwood crossed over to the boys’ side in Peewee to play two seasons with the Kanata Blazers. “All my (girl) friends loved that I played with boys because then they could come watch my games and watch the boys,” Eastwood smiles. Both 14, Cogan and Eastwood are in the midst of their first year of high school

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The Bell Capital Cup features the most teams from outside North America in tournament history this year.


Lindsay Eastwood (left) and Sam Cogan.



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at Glebe and All Saints respectively. And they now have another major commitment on their plates since making the switch over to girls' hockey this season to play for the Nepean Jr. Wildcats in the Provincial Women’s Hockey League.

ADAPTING TO WOMEN’S GAME Although women’s hockey remains extremely physical, both Cogan and Eastwood say transitioning to a non-contact game hasn’t been easy. “For guys’ hockey, you have to go in and check, but in girls’ hockey, you have to go in and get the puck,” Cogan explains. “So that’s a big part of switching.” Eastwood agrees. “There’s no hitting – and hitting opens up the ice more – so you have to keep moving your feet,” adds the rookie defender who was second in team scoring through 17 games. Another major adjustment is the time commitment. Since the team plays most of its games in and around the Toronto area, the girls are on the road a few weekends a month. With practices during the week, and games on the weekends, socializing time is minimal. “We miss out on opportunities to be with our friends,” Eastwood notes. “But there’s nothing better than being with your


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It’s a tight timeline for next fall, but the Gee-Gees plan to beat Lansdowne Park demolition by building a stadium at Lees.

Vo l . 3

Young Guns


Ottawa’s Cody Sorensen is part of a World Cup bobled crew that may be the best lineup Canada has ever put together.

Sp o rt s O t t a wa . c om

for all your local s ports news .


team and doing what you love to do.” In addition to adapting to a different style of play and a travel-heavy schedule, Cogan and Eastwood are also adjusting to their new teammates – some of whom are four years older. Megan Eady, the Wildcats assistant captain, says initially the team was worried Cogan and Eastwood would be too intimidated to integrate within the squad. But luckily this hasn’t been the case at all. “They’re both really outgoing and really goofy,” Eady says. “If you were in the room, you’d never know they’re two 14year-olds with a bunch of 18-year-olds.” This is exactly what Nepean coach Fay McLaughlin wants to hear. After scouting both Cogan and Eastwood last season, she believes it was time for them to make the switch to women’s hockey.

TEAM CANADA & NCAA BECKON? “You can only stay in boys’ hockey for so long, especially with all the opportunities in girls’ hockey,” McLaughlin says, highlighting opportunities such as earning athletic scholarships and the chance to play at a higher level. “They’re not able to take advantage of that if they’re in the boys’ system.”

YOUNG GUNS continued on p. 4 ELITE




Gymnasts make large, rewarding commitment to sport

“We've known each other since we were two,” Paquin highlights. “We have better friends at the gym than at school.”

By Anne Duggan Balance, power, determination, and most of all, confidence. Each participant, whether an athlete, coach, judge or volunteer, brought their own unique notion of “girl power” – the theme of this year's first Women's Artistic Gymnastics Provincial Qualifier – to the event held Dec. 3-4 at Ottawa Gymnastics Centre. What everyone agreed on is that it is an important and natural outcome of gymnastics – a sport where those traits are achieved through participants' tremendous dedication. “The focus was to get the girls to celebrate their efforts. To find strength in their sport,” explains Tobie Gorman, OGC women's program head coach. Carrying the theme of girl power were the featured role models in the programme, including Mother Theresa and Harriet Tubman, while video clips of participating athletes describing their version of girl power appeared on the centre's new giant screen, and the music played between flights featured female pop stars such as Lady Gaga and Rihanna. While all of the athletes displayed girl power, none did more so than OGC athlete Nathalie Joanette, says Gorman. Last week, her 20-year old brother died of complications related to cerebal palsy, yet both Joanette and her mother found the strength to attend the weekend's competition. “We couldn't be more proud for her and her mother. And she had great results as she has just moved up a level and an age category,” Gorman says



OGC gymnast Brielle Johnson won four medals in total to place third in the all-around competition on Dec. 4.

of Joanette, who earned a gold medal on beam and silver in all three other events to place second allaround in the Level 7, Age 14+ category.

PROVINCIALS ROAD STARTS & ENDS IN OTTAWA The event was the first opportunity for athletes to post qualifying scores in an attempt to earn one of the top-24 positions that gain entry into the Ontario cham-

pionships, which will be held at the Nepean Corona club in April. Karl Balisch, general manager of the Tumblers Gymnastics Centre in Orleans, had just one objective for his 11 athletes at the competition. “Our goal was for them to come out and show their confidence,” Balisch explains. “They have worked very hard for this.” For Sophie Paquin, the reward for the hard work came in the form of five medals in the Level 7 Age 10/11 division. “I really liked my beam – the back walk-over handspring, I've been working all summer on it,” exclaims the 11-year-old Tumblers athlete. Not every moment of the 23.5 hours of practice each week is enjoyable, admit the Tumblers athletes, who aren't the biggest fans of conditioning and ballet exercises. “It's stuff that's not fun,” says 11-year-old Beth Webster, who nevertheless recognizes the benefits of those chores. What helps push through less enjoyable moments is having fun teammates to hang out with at the gym.


A torn ACL, MCL and meniscus kept Ottawa Gymnastics Centre athlete Christie BoswellPatterson on the sidelines for over a year, but it only made her return to competition that much sweeter as she placed third all-around at a provincial Tour Selection meet to earn a team position for a January event in Cancun, Mexico. Read more about her road to recovery on

The older athletes are even more aware of the sacrifices they make in order to thrive in the world of competitive gymnastics. Kelsey Won, 17, has been competing since she was nine. “I moved up a level and it's also my last year of school so it has been a tough year so far,” notes the OGC gymnast who finds the sport helps take her mind off school pressures and teaches life lessons such as perseverance – even if that means her social life can often be impeded, especially with Friday night training. “I miss a lot of social events, shopping and movies,” echoes 15-year-old OGC teammate Bella St George, who produced the highest point total of any athlete in winning the Level 9 Age 12-14+ all-around competition. Brielle Johnson, 13, and Lubina Nayak, 15, of OGC recognize that their sport takes away important family time. “I get home and go straight to bed,” Nayak notes. Johnson quickly adds that the girls form important ties in their gymnastics world. “But, our coach is also family,” she points out. Other local all-around champions included Julina Benjamin from Les Sittelles and OGC athletes Lauren Rado, Adrianka Forrest, and Taylor Pyefinch, while Christie Boswell-Patterson, Sarah Hu, Rebecca Richardson, Johnson, Mackenzie Cox, Sofia Baggio, Bradey Rosettani and Catarina Musca of OGC all achieved podium results along with Caroline Beland of Les Sittelles. Visit for more coverage.



Long-awaited on-campus stadium approved By Dan Plouffe

The start of a Saskatchewan winter was certainly kind to Samantha Glavine and Jeff Hough as they competed in the 2012 Skate Canada Challenge in Regina from Nov. 30 to Dec. 4. The Minto Skating Club ice dancers broke through into the silver medal position in the novice category, finishing just behind former Rideau skaters Melinda and Andrew Meng (who now represent Quebec). Andriyko Goyaniuk of the Rideau Skating Club earned second position in the pre-novice men's event, winding up only .03 points out of first place with an 81.59 total. Nepean's Alaine Chartrand hit third place in the senior women's competition, while Gloucester's Jennifer Pettem was the top Eastern Ontario skater in the junior women's competition, placing seventh against the nationwide field, and Minto's Sophie Fu cracked the top-10 in prenovice women. Look for more coverage on JR. GRADS WRITE OWN VERSION OF MIRACLE ON ICE

The Cumberland Jr. Grads Major Bantam 'B' team pulled off a big upset of a Greater New York 'AA' team at a Nov. 25-27 hockey tournament, and to top it all off, they did it at the site of the 1980 Miracle on Ice in Lake Placid. Visit for the full story.

There was a time that the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees football team wanted to play its games closer to campus so badly that they investigated the feasibility of putting bleachers on the roof of the Sports Complex so they could play at Matt Anthony Field. It was a bit of a far-fetched idea, but it illustrates how badly the athletic department wanted a project similar to the one the school’s board approved in November for the construction of a new 3,500-seat stadium on Lees campus. “My first reaction was, ‘Finally,’” recounts Ottawa U athletic director Luc Gélineau, who believes the greatest value from the new stadium will be an increased ability to offer recreational opportunities to students. “And not only was I happy to say finally we will be able to service our student population, but also the community around the campus.” Therein lies perhaps the most critical key to success for the stadium construction project. With the $8 million estimated cost borne entirely by the athletic department, revenue from renting the facility – which will include a bubble in the winter – to outside groups could be substantial due to a demand that can’t be met in the urban core a the moment. “In the summer, you have the soccer moms in Sandy Hill who are driving their kids to Kanata and Orleans,” Gélineau highlights. “And they call to ask to use our field, and we have to say, ‘Sorry, it’s occupied.’”

LANSDOWNE CREATES URGENCY While it’s a project that’s been desired for ages since the Gee-Gees last played home games at an oncampus stadium well over 40 years ago, it was the planned reconstruction of Lansdowne Park that pushed the project ahead now. Acting as the new site for wintertime bookings that currently take place at Lansdowne’s Coliseum soccer

Silver with Canada, now headed for gold in U.S.?

The Gee-Gees will bid adieu to Frank Clair Stadium except for special football contests such as the Panda Game.

facility is a strong possibility. “The location of the facility will help its business case,” notes Gélineau, who also believes the stadium on campus will be a great asset to develop school spirit. “It makes a lot of sense.” The biggest concern about the project in Gélineau’s mind – and perhaps another reason for his reaction of “finally” when it was approved – is the exceptionally tight deadline U of O faces to build a stadium in time for fall 2012. As the Ottawa Internationals Soccer Club recently experienced with significant construction delays on their new artificial fields at Franco-Cité and

OUA medals for CU water polo

The Carleton men won gold and the defending-champion women had to settle for silver as the Ravens hosted the OUA water polo championships.

Check for more.


The Ottawa Fury under-13 boys suffered their first loss of the season at the United Soccer Leagues Super-Y League North American championships, but it wasn't enough to keep the standout crew out the semi-final round as they also posted a pair of victories in group play. Check to follow the team's progress.


Ottawa native Stefanie McKeough collected a silver medal at the Four Nations Cup in Sweden in mid-November. With many retirements on the back end following the 2010 Olympics, the 20year-old defender has stepped up onto the senior national women's hockey team. McKeogh's Wisconsin Badgers are also 15-1 in NCAA play, while several other Ottawa players have stood out as well. Clarkson Golden Knights sophomore Erica Howe (pictured above) was named Eastern College conference goaltender of the month for November on the heels of earning the same award in October. Former Ottawa Senators women's hockey teammate Jamie Lee Rattray leads Clarkson in scoring with 23 points in 16 games.

Hillcrest high schools, building a flat field on top of a flat field wasn’t as easy as it sounded, club executives quickly learned. In the past, there were worries about contaminated soil at Lees campus, but Gélineau says the field will be built away from the area of greatest concern, and that they won’t be moving much soil anyhow to build a field on top. “Any project where you’re building downtown in a large city, there’s always concerns and obstacles,” Gélineau acknowledges. “This site here, we’re quite confident it’s going to be get done for our objective of August. The critical thing is having the field down, and then you can start building around it.” Very shortly, Gélineau expects all the big pieces of the facility such as the field, lighting and bleachers will go to tender, with construction to begin the moment the snow is gone. A nearby building will be upgraded to be used as changerooms as part of the stadium project, but what Gélineau is most enthusiastic about is the possibility of future athletic facility construction in the area such as gymnasiums and physiotherapy services. “We’ve got the field, but we still need to do other stuff as well,” Gélineau adds. “The list is endless, but what are we going to put there and how are we going to finance it?”






COMMUNITY CLUBS Most wonderful time of the year involves Bell Capital Cup for local hockey families


The Jokerit club from Finland will be back at the Bell Capital Cup providing a chance for local teams like the Gloucester Rangers to face an international opponent in their hometown. Fifteen teams from outside North America will attend this year.

By Dan Plouffe It’s that special time of year again, and for many Ottawa hockey families who have embraced it as part of their holiday schedule, what makes the season special is the chance to bring everyone out to the rink for the Bell Capital Cup. “Because it’s holiday time, usually families are together, so instead of it being just mom or dad that goes out to watch the game, you end up with mom, dad, brother, sister, and maybe their grandparents and their aunt and uncle are in town,” highlights Scott Lawryk, who is in his first year as Capital Cup general manager after running tournaments and leagues at the Bell Sensplex for five years. “It’s great for the players. What kid wouldn’t want to look up after they score and see 10 of their family members? “It makes them feel like a big deal, and they should feel that way.” Around 250 teams from the Ottawa District Minor Hockey Association will make up over half of the 400plus entries that will compete in 19 Atom and Peewee-

Ice prevail in home tournament

age divisions at 13th-annual edition of the tournament from Dec. 28-Jan. 1. While it won’t be a record-breaking total number, this year’s edition will have the greatest representation from outside North America, with six teams coming from Finland, five from Germany and four from South Korea, not to mention others from places such as Texas. The international experience is part of what makes the event unique for both the visitors, along with local teams who get to match up against foreign competition, and maybe learn a little bit about a different culture as they trade pins after games, or host them as billets. “For an international team, instead of having the kids stay in hotels kind of on their own, they have tour guides for the better part of a week,” Lawryk notes, adding the tournament provides an opportunity to showcase Ottawa as a community and the passion it carries for hockey. “Where else are you going to go where a team from Kanata can play a team from Germany? It gives kids the opportunity of a lifetime for certain experiences they will not be able to get anywhere else.”

Do you have a great minor hockey story to share? We want to hear about it! E-mail Jr. 67ʼs Day takes off in Year 1

The host Ottawa Ice scored a big victory in the Dec. 2-4 City of Ottawa Ringette Association Tournament, going undefeated to capture the under-16 'AA' title with a 4-3 win over Manitoba in the final. Emma Thom led with six goals and six assists, while Heidi Wippel, Riane Della Ventura, Nicole Mills and Dana Prosper all averaged better than a point per game. Ottawa's head coach is Team Canada player Jenna McBride, whose National Ringette League Ice team is off to a solid 8-1-1 start. The Gloucester Devils are 3-5-1. Visit for more ringette coverage.

The first-ever Ottawa Jr. 67’s Day took place on Nov. 19 at Earl Armstrong Arena as all four ‘AAA’ teams took to the ice for back-to-back games. The club earned a combined 2-1-1 record. Read this full story online at

Doc Hockey Corner ART improves nagging injuries --By Dr. Shayne Baylis, Doc Hockey My son has a sports injury, where should I take him? This question often arises when an athlete is expected to return quickly with minimal time lost from their sport. Most parents and athletes are often predetermined to seek a physiotherapist unaware that other options are available to them. Throughout years of playing hockey, I have been through many types of injuries and one in particularly sticks out in my memory. I was playing defence for Niagara University in NCAA Div. I and fighting for my spot in the lineup every day. It did not help that I was battling a nagging groin injury. At that time, sitting out for practice meant I was not suiting up for the games and thus I was hesitant to see the trainer (Nats Goto – New York Islanders Head Trainer) for help. Unfortunately, the injury was not going away on its own (sound familiar?) and I had no choice but to face the inevitable and seek medical attention from our trainer. Initially the treatment rendered included Ultrasound and Muscle stimulation; however when things were not improving as quickly as expected, my trainer then took a more direct manual approach and started stripping my muscles while I engaged in active movements. This was my first time being exposed to the basis of Active Release Technique and the results provided rapid improvement which was exactly what I needed to remain in practice and compete for a spot in the game roster. My history with sports injuries similar to the one I just described has driven me to become full body

certified in Active Release Technique. I now practice using this technique and functional movement analysis. Patients express their amazement after experiencing the benefits of fast healing and better function that are easily seen through increased range of motion and strength. I am able to utilize Active Release Technique on almost every joint and the musculature that surrounds and crosses the joint; from ankles, knees, hips, neck, wrists, elbows etc. The only way to be your best is to be healthy. So if an injury is holding you back, book an appointment with your local ART provider. WHAT IS ACTIVE RELEASE TECHNIQUES®? Active Release Techniques treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. Headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, shoulder pain, sciatica, plantar fascitis, knee problems, and tennis elbow are just a few of the many conditions that can be resolved with ART. These problems have all one important thing in common: they all result through the repetitive nature of certain movements overusing muscles and accumulate excessive scar tissue from small micro-tears that restricts normal movement and function of joints. The hands evaluate abnormal tissues that are treated by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements. E-mail for more information.

@doc_hockey doc hockey

YOUNG GUNS: Bright future ahead for 14-year-olds


continued from p. 1 But these opportunities weren’t the only reason for the switch. Cogan explains how the physicality of boys‘ hockey was putting her at a disadvantage. “The guys were getting really big – obviously a guy’s body mass is bigger than a girl’s – so with all the body contact, my dad was afraid I was going to get hurt,” says the forward who scored three points in a pair of overtime losses on the first weekend of December. At 5-11, Eastwood was still one of the taller players on her team last season, but playing women’s hockey is putting her in a better position to achieve her goals. “My dream is to play for Team Canada U18,” she notes. “That would be awesome.” Coach McLaughlin hopes that provincial and national team programs will be in both players' futures, and when the time comes, she

believes Cogan and Eastwood will likely be recruited to play U.S. college hockey. “I’ve already been contacted by some significant Division I schools that just want to make contact,” McLaughlin shares. “So I think if Sam and Lindsay put the effort in, in a few years they’re going to be able to dictate where they go to school.” While the girls' coach acknowledges both players' incredible potential, she is adamant that there’s work to be done. Luckily the willingness to put in hard work is just another thing Cogan and Eastwood have in common. “I think both of them have that understanding that you have to do something everyday to get better,” McLaughlin says. “It’s a great achievement on their part (to be playing in an under-21 league.) They’re going to be fantastic, especially once they’ve played a couple years and are done adjusting. Might as well take their name down now.”



By Dan Plouffe

Cougars capital’s next best

There’s a lingering sting that’s tough to shake when losing an OFSAA final 15-13 in the fifth set to the team that’s now won six consecutive provincial ‘AA’ boys’ volleyball titles, but coming so close to knocking off Eden for gold remains an impressive feat for the Franco-Cité Faucons, who produced the best fall season OFSAA result for national capital high schools. “I’m really proud of the guys,” says Franco-Cité coach Thierry Lavigne, whose squad was led by its two Grade 12 players, Patrick Goulet and Jordan Marchand. “The rest of the team got a lot of experience out of this tournament and they’ll be ready to roll next season.” It remains to be seen if the Faucons will maintain their position as provincial powerhouses with the pending graduation of their two stars – who are also the team’s lone club volleyball players – but backto-back trips to the OFSAA championship playoff round represents a nice feather in the cap for the Smyth Road school that’s built a strong volleyball program in recent years. VOLLEYBALL & BASKETBALL CITY FINALS

Visit to watch video reports from the national capital high school senior boys’ volleyball and senior girls’ basketball championship finals.

Kerry MacLean’s Colonel By Cougars claimed the OFSAA ‘AAA’ boys’ volleyball consolation title, rebounding from a two-point deciding-set loss that kept them out of the championship playoffs by tiebreaker. Glebe also narrowly missed the playoffs at the ‘AAAA’ championships, while Béatrice-Desloges and Redeemer Christian weren’t as close in ‘AAA’ and ‘A’. The two-time defending ‘AAA’-champion LouisRiel Rebelles were knocked out in their first elimination game, leaving the way for the Elmwood Eagles to produce Ottawa’s best result at the OFSAA girls’ basketball championships as consolation finalists at the ‘A’ tournament. St. Matthew and Glebe were winless at the ‘AA’ and ‘AAAA’ competitions.


Ottawa native Tyson Hinz won every major CIS award available last year and should only be better this season.

Part of the French Catholic school’s sportsétudes program, the volleyball team members have a gym period together every second day where Lavigne has some extra time to work on technique with individual players, or implement tactical strategies.


Join the


Register today, the next session starts soon! January 15 to March 4

March 25 to May 13

Our youth development programs combine volleyball instruction and game play at two schools: Louis Riel (on Bearbrook Rd) Franco Cité (on Smythe Rd) Young Mavs 1 (Grades 4-6) Sundays (90 min. sessions) House League (Grades 9-12) Wednesday evenings at Louis Riel (2 hour sessions)

Register online today at

Young Mavs 2 (Grades 7-8) Sundays (2 hour sessions)

Girls & Boys!


“Of course it gives us an advantage,” notes Lavigne, who credits assistant Réjean Godmaire for a big part of the team’s success. “But that’s how you win – you invest a lot of time and put the effort in. That’s

not a secret. We get a chance to do it during our school time, so good for us.” Bringing along playing experience and a different view of the game, Goulet believes that Lavigne joining the Faucons to head the volleyball program last season was the driving force behind the team’s run to the provincial final. “He came in and turned a good team into a great team,” Goulet says of the former All-Canadian for the Université Laval Rouge et Or. “He really took us to the next level. He was a really serious coach, coming in having played a lot of volleyball.”

IMMEDIATE MOVE FROM HS TO HP PROGRAM For Goulet, there wasn’t much chance to let the reality sink in that he just completed his high school volleyball career since he was back on the court less than a week later with the Mavericks 18-and-under high performance team.

Serving as the assistant coach on that squad is Lavigne, who identifies the school’s partnership with Mavs as another key ingredient to their success since it permits athletes to play volleyball all year. In return for having access to their gym several nights per week and all day Sunday, the Mavericks hold camps and share coaches with Franco-Cité, and the club also purchased training equipment that remains at the school.

COMMUNITY CLUB CONNECTION “The partnership agreement was very key in the success of both our club and the FC program,” explains Mavericks president Kerry MacLean, whose club has similar arrangements with other schools, although Franco-Cité remains its biggest volume location. “They had the facilities and the clients, while we had the expertise and programs.” There is no better example of the fruits of the partnership than Goulet, who “stole the show the whole weekend at OFSAA” in his coach’s eyes, contributing in all aspects with hitting, serving, defence, calmness under pressure and leadership. “He’s the whole package,” Lavigne explains. “Listen, the fact that he’s so freaking tall helps, but he can jump, he’s got good hands, he plays a lot of volleyball and he puts a lot of work into it.”

Mavs earn unique OVA tourney podium sweep

It's an unconventional approach, but the Mavericks own the proof of success as their three 15-andunder girls' teams finished at the top of a November Ontario Volleyball Association regional tournament. The club is mixing around all players from the 15U level for each event and will only select set teams at the end of January. "They get a chance to play with a variety of players and all three head coaches," explains coach Colin Walker, whose Stampede girls came out on top. "It is rewarding to see that our unique situation is being rewarded with strong results." Other early-season champions include the Walker-coached Ottawa Fusion 16U boys, the Fusion 14U girls, and 14U boys and 17U girls Mavs.

St. Peter doubles up football

The St. Peter Knights swept both the national capital junior and senior football titles this season, while the Sir Wilfrid Laurier Lancers reached two finals, winning the senior tier 2 league. What video reports from each championship game at


Franco-Cité leads local OFSAA charge with vball silver




Ottawa Sports Media Official Launch – a wild success!

902 Pinecrest Rd. Ottawa, Ont. K2B 6B3 Dan Plouffe Editor 613-261-5838 Larry Ring Director of Business Development 613-293-1730 Matt Gilmer Advertising & Marketing Manager 613-80-SPORT

We at Ottawa Sports Media are still riding high from the awesome turnout for the Official Launch Event for and the Ottawa Sportspage this past Tuesday, Nov. 29. Every corner of the sports community was there with representation from all kinds of different sports (including three-time Paralympic medalist Jason Dunkerley, who had only just returned from collecting another two medals at the Parapan Am Games!) The turnout of such a diverse sporting crowd (who all seemed to know each other somehow anyway) was so motivating for us because that's what we're all about – serving an audience with an interest in a wide

It'd be tough to find a group in the city that puts on a better show than OGC, so many thanks for hosting such a great weekend and for treating us at Ottawa Sports Media so well! Congrats also to all the exceptional local gymnasts that blew us away with your skills, and dedication. We should note that we plan for this to only be the first one – we are very eager to forge more partnerships with local sports organizations, so please do not hesitate to contact us via the methods list on the left column of this page if this is of interest to you. And lastly, best wishes to our readers for a tremendous holiday season!


The Ottawa Sportspage is printed the first Tuesday of every month by Ottawa Sports Media, the locallyowned and operated publishers of and the Ottawa Sportspage.






Name: Elyse Charrier Sport: Triathlon & Running Club: Bytown Storm School: Sir Robert Borden Grade: 11 About: Elyse Charrier ran two 5 km races in the span of four hours on Nov. 5, winning a $1,000 scholarship as Run Ottawa Youth series champion, and then competing in the OFSAA cross-country running championships senior girls’ race.









Name: Jake Molinski Sport: Football Club: Cumberland Panthers School: St. Peter Grade: 11 About: The quarterback for the St. Peter Knights senior football team, Jake Molinski won the first city championship of his high school career on Nov. 12, scoring the second touchdown in his team's 17-2 victory over St. Mark. Name: Christie Boswell-Patterson Sport: Gymnastics Club: Ottawa Gymnastics Centre School: Glebe Grade: 10 About: In her return to competition after knee surgery wiped out the previous season, Christie Boswell-Patterson won gold on the balance beam and uneven bars en route to a third-place all-around finish at an Ontario Tour Selection meet.

Thanks to Tasso Vasilas and Mark Kosmos for hosting us (and for the awesome wings of course), and a big, big thank you to everyone who came out to join us for the event, as well as those who couldn't be there but sent messages of encouragement – it makes all the difference to have you behind us! We had several giveaways at the event, but the big winner was Innes Councillor Rainer Bloess, the lucky gentleman who took home a pair of 200-level Sens tickets. On top of our Official Launch, we also had our first official sponsorship of a local sports event at the Ottawa Gymnastics Centre on Dec. 3-4.

range of sports and activities. We overflowed our area at Local Heroes Bank St. as folks who are involved with all the different levels we cover – high schools, universities, community clubs and elite amateur sport – came out to support us and help celebrate this new voice for all the city's great sports stories. We can’t emphasize how much that means to us, and motivates us. We're also quite pleased to note that our Advertising & Marketing Manager Matt Gilmer was a very busy man in the days following the Official Launch as word of our publication and our cause continues to spread throughout the city!








By Dan Plouffe Cody Sorensen is living an experience that is foreign to literally every other Ottawa athlete. The nation’s capital might have a couple decent toboggan hills, but it doesn’t compare to the kind of tracks the

Ottawa brakeman Cody Sorensen has solidified his place again this season on Canada’s top bobsled, piloted by Lyndon Rush.

25-year-old tackles on the World Cup bobsleigh circuit. So even though his travels through Europe didn’t start off the best with a 13th-place finish in Austria on Dec. 4, Sorensen is making sure to savour every moment offered by his unique athletic pursuit. “Most of these tracks are in resort towns. They’re just amazing places,” Sorensen describes. “You’re living the life of the rich and famous, but making $20,000 a year.” Even though bobsleigh has just about zero roots in Ottawa, most know what’s involved. But nothing quite compares to flying down the icy chute in a metal fuselage at almost 150 km/h for the first time, which happened to be in Whistler for the former OFSAA hurdles PHOTO PROVIDED champion from

Glebe Collegiate Institute. “I was so naive I didn’t understand the true dangers or even how crazy Whistler is,” Sorensen recalls. “I used to wear glasses, and I had my glasses on under my helmet on my very first run. We go into the first corner and boom – they just get sucked right off my face. “I’m freaking out because I’m afraid they’ll go up front and mess with the steering, so I’m holding on with one hand and trying to find my glasses with the other hand, my head’s getting pushed to the bottom, I’m getting smacked around... “We get to the bottom and I’m like, ‘Man, that was crazy.’A lot of people don’t love their first run, and I didn’t either.” Sorensen says a good run feels like “being in a car accident for a minute.” And when it goes bad? Sorensen has been in seven crashes during his career – two of them where he’s been sucked out of the sled by G-forces. He’s been somewhat fortunate that a severe case of ice burn is about the worst injury he’s suffered.

EURO TRIP DOESN’T MATCH BILLING It’s not quite fun and games all the time on the road. The Canadian bobsledders don’t exactly sit back for the rock star treatment as they cruise through Europe


– 10-hour trips dragging their sled truck behind their rental vehicle in snowstorms is part of the package frequently enough. But even if a small Sport Canada carding salary means living like a student a bit later into life, heading out to a Bobsleigh Canada training camp when he was in peak form just after track-and-field season is a decision Sorensen will never regret. “No. 1, it was my love for sport” that inspired him to try out bobsleigh, explains the three-time CIS medalist at the University of Guelph whose father was a 1972 Olympic wrestler. “And now Sochi is the goal for sure.” Sorensen narrowly missed out on a trip to the Vancouver Olympics in his

rookie season as part of the Canada-3 sled. Last year, he joined 2010 Olympic bronze medalist Lyndon Rush and collected four World Cup medals, plus a world championship bronze in the combined bobsleigh and skeleton team event alongside Jon Montgomery and Mellisa Hollingsworth. It was a great start for a new team in Sorensen’s view, but now as they welcome Jesse Lumsden to the fold along with Neville Wright, he believes Canada1 is capable of greater heights. “This is the strongest and fastest I have ever been,” Sorensen notes, adding he senses better focus from the team this season. “On paper, our crew is the best that Bobsleigh Canada has ever produced, but it will inevitably come down to how quickly we can find chemistry as a unit.” Armed with a new Dutch-made sled that is turning some heads already, Sorensen is hopeful all the pieces will come together in time for February’s world championships in Lake Placid, where Canada’s goal is to win a medal. “It’s a unique opportunity,” says Sorensen, who now spends most of the year in Calgary. “Not only have we had success in Lake Placid in past years, but friends and family will have the ability to cheer us on because of its proximity to Ottawa.”


Ottawa bobsledder part of crew poised to be Canadaʼs best ever



COMMUNITY CLUBS Concordes skate near and far

ELITE SNAPSHOTS DORION GOLDEN AT SLEDGE CHALLENGE Ottawa's Marc Dorion won a gold medal at the Nov. 27-Dec. 3 world sledge hockey challenge in Calgary as Team Canada went a perfect 5-0 at the four-nation event. The 24-year-old forward scored a goal and an assist at the competition as the Canadians beat the U.S. 4-1 in the final.

Gloucester Concordes were all over the map on the Dec. 3 weekend. They hosted their own Eastern Ontario ability meet for almost 50 of their own athletes and just as many Ottawa Pacers. Three Concordes went west to Calgary for the Canadian short-track speed skating junior world championship trials, while others went east to Quebec City for a Canada Cup long-track meet. And then there was the club's long-time star Ivanie Blondin, who was in the Netherlands on the World Cup circuit. A short-track skater for most of her career, Blondin put that experience to good use in November for the first-ever World Cup mass start race, where she placed seventh.


City of Ottawa Councillors congratulate Ottawa Sports Media on the Official Launch of and the Ottawa Sportspage! Ottawa Sports Media would like to acknowledge the support of Councillor Bob Monette, Councillor Jan Harder and Councillor Rainer Bloess for their support of amateur sport in the City of Ottawa, and for backing us as we provide a voice to grassroots sport in the nation's capital.

For three-time Paralympic medalist Jason Dunkerley, the main purpose of this year's Parapan American Games was to gain some race experience with his new guide runner. But when Josh Karanja was hobbled by a quadriceps injury after making the trip down to Guadalajara, Mexico, the backup plan went into place. Turns out the backup wasn't too bad as fill-in guide Cody Boast, a sprint specialist, helped Dunkerley to a silver medal in the 1,500 metres and then ran half of the bronze medal-winning 5 km race before giving way to another guide who could keep up the pace. Three goalball athletes from the nation's capital collected bronze medals at the Parapan Ams – Whitney Bogart, Amy Kneebone and Jillian MacSween – while national team veteran Chantal Benoit won silver with Canada's women's wheelchair basketball team and Tony Walby took bronze in judo's 100 kg+ category.

JONES KICKSTARTS WORLD CUP SEASON WITH A 7TH Nakkertok cross-country ski club member Perianne Jones helped out Chandra Crawford with her Fast & Female initiative this past summer, and now the pair are proving to be a good team on snow too as they placed seventh at a November World Cup team sprint event in Germany. Jones dodged a pile-up on the opening corner of the race and was in fourth position before handing off to Crawford for the final leg. There are World Cup stops in Switzerland, Slovenia and Germany during December.


Add another medal to the trophy case – and another impressive victory against a national field of Canada's best – for Ottawa's Karyn Jewell. Just a week after her 18th birthday, the St. Peter Catholic High School student won the women's 400-metre individual medley at a Canada Cup meet in Toronto. Jewell's time of four minutes, 48.23 seconds was just .52 seconds off the meet record set by Tanya Hunks, a former teammate and idol of Jewell's when she lived in B.C. The Gatineau Phénix swimmer also won the 'B' final of 200 m butterfly.

SKI STRUGGLES It's hardly been a blastoff start for three Ottawa alpine skiers as they begin their World Cup seasons. In his second year on the premiere global tour, 22-yearold Dustin Cook has raced in Austria, Alberta and Colorado, earning a top result of 51st place in the super-G. Veteran Ryan Semple, a long-time slalom specialist, has tried switching to the speed game, placing 59th and 60th in a pair of downhills. Patrick Biggs, meanwhile, has yet to get to the starting gate as he recovers from a torn meniscus knee injury.

Ottawa Sportspage  

December 2011 edition of the Ottawa Sportspage

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