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Spreading the Love of Tennis for 35 years! Nick Patterson 613-203-8816 NickPatterson9 @yahoo.ca

TENNISFORLIFEOTTAWA.COM Your Not-for-Profit Voice for Local Amateur Sport


A trio of Ottawa’s top football talent collided when it mattered most, and Carleton’s crop came out on top


Carter carries Carleton

By Charlie Pinkerton


Ottawa’s Joanna Brown proved her self as one of the world’s top triathletes with a strong 2017 season



The Cumberland United under-13 girls’ soccer team won 3 titles in 5 days to cap off an unforgettable season



Kate Miller won gold at the Pan American Junior Diving Championship, in her first time donning the maple leaf

With bragging lights over the nation’s capital on the line, three locally-raised players came together in the spotlight of the final play of the biggest annual spectacle in Canadian university sport. With the Carleton Ravens down 3 points in double overtime of the Panda Game, quarterback Michael Arruda took the snap from the opposing Ottawa GeeGees 6-yard line. Arruda, a transfer from the University of Ottawa and originally from Gatineau, put the ball in the belly of Ottawa-native Nathan Carter. The Ravens had run the plau, and option, all afternoon, and Carter, who had 34 carries for 256 yards in the game, had received the ball more often than not on the day. Gee-Gees defensive standout Jackson Bennett, a product Sir Wilfrid Laurier Secondary School and the Cumberland Panthers, attacked the Ravens backfield untouched. “It was double-overtime. Anyone can make a play at any time so I was really just trying to make a play,” Bennett remembers about his split-second decision. He leaned in the direction of Carter, allowing Arruda to pull the ball away from the running back to himself and run untouched into the end zone, giving the Ravens the 33-30 victory. “It was pretty heartbreaking,” Bennett added. “I was relieved,” Carter reflected about watching Arruda cross the plane of the end zone to crown the Ravens as Panda Game champions on the game’s

October/November 2017

St. Patrick’s High School graduate Nathan Carter led Carleton to their 4th straight Panda Game victory photo: valerie wutti

final play. “There was a lot of anticipation that had built up playing in front of the home-

town crowd of 24,000 people. There was almost a sigh of relief and excitement at the same time.”

PANDA continues on p.5

LE 2317 NOVEMBRE ET LE 1 DÉCEMBRE ET 25 NOVEMBRE 2016 ÉLÈVE D’UN JOUR LES Viens visiter ton école secondaire!


Réserve ta place au (613) 590-2233 ou auprès de Ken Lévesque au ken.levesque@cepeo.on.ca


613-590-2233 louis-riel.cepeo.on.ca



Coaches key to Woods’ success, historic Vuelta finish By Mat LaBranche A late season change of heart led to Ottawa cyclist Mike Woods securing the best professional finish of his career to date. The 31-year-old finished 7th in the general classification of the Vuelta a España, a three-week long (Aug. 19 - Sept. 10) Grand Tour race that started in Nîmes, France and wrapped up in Madrid, Spain. Woods’ finish was the best ever by a Canadian at the Vuelta a España and the fifth best by a Canadian in a Grand Tour race ever. He had considered not even taking part in the event, as there were a couple of other races he had circled on his calendar, specifically the Montreal Grand Prix, which not only was close to home, but also serves as the home base of his coach. But his team’s director, Juanma Garate, persuaded him after discovering how suited his style was to the course. “(Garate) didn’t want the pressure of racing under general classification to get to me for the entirety of the race,” said the Cannondale-Drapac team member. “(Garate) wanted me to be more relaxed and not feel the stress going in, so we just said we’d focus on trying to win a stage and then start shifting focus as the race progressed if I hadn’t lost time.” This wasn’t the first time one of Woods’ coaches had a major influence on him. After receiving a scholarship for long distance running at the University of Michigan, Woods succumbed to several injuries, forcing him to return home to Ottawa, which is where he eventually crossed over to cycling. But it was in running where he had the pleasure of training under Gary Monsour and Ian Clark. Monsour was instrumental in kick-starting a cross country program in his sophomore year at Hill-

Mike Woods earned the best Canadian Vuelta a España result of all time this season.

Dylan Wykes. M2M offered online training that aimed to help maximize athletes’ performances. “I was so quickly embraced by the cycling community in Ottawa and so many people believed in me early on, even when I had no business being in a bike race,” said Woods, who placed 38th overall earlier this season in his Grand Tour debut at the Giro d’Italia. “There are just so many people who lent me their time or a pair of pedals; or gave me some equipment I didn’t have.”


file photo

crest High School, while Clark served as an important mentor in running days with the Ottawa Lions Track and Field Club. Woods also states that the pair devoted countless hours and late nights to help improve his running game. “I still apply the things I learned from their coaching and guidance today in bike racing,” revealed Woods. “You don’t appreciate it that much when you’re 15 or 16 years old – when you think you deserve

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everything – but looking back now, you begin to realize how much time people like that put in and I just feel so fortunate. Especially the mentorship and leadership I learned from them.” Because of this and the warm reception he felt from the Ottawa cycling commu-

nity when he switched sports, he decided to pay it forward and start Mile2Marathon with 2012 Olympian

Woods also credits his parents for his success, as they entered him in a “laundry list” of sports when he was younger. He believes the skills he learned in the various sports – which include hockey, skiing and tennis, among others – all came together over time to transform him into a more superior athlete. “Doing all these sports really helped me as a runner because I was far more robust and had more athletic ability,” said the former competitive hockey player. “One thing I see that’s a real problem is parents pushing kids into one sport yearround and I don’t think the goal of any kid getting into sports should be to become a pro. I think it should be doing something they enjoy, because such a small percentage of people actually become pro. I think the whole point of sport is just to have fun and make friends.”

Golly Gee!

photo: martin boyce

Local cyclists were also front and centre at the Elite Canadian Track Championships from Sept. 28-30 at the Mattamy National Cycling Centre in Milton, Ontario. Derek Gee (left, in action at the Canadian Road Cycling Championships in Ottawa/Gatineau this past summer) walked away with the most hardware, capturing four gold medals in the men’s team pursuit, men’s omnium, men’s individual pursuit and men’s madison. Meanwhile, Katherine Maine received the gold in the women’s team pursuit; The Cyclery 4iiii rider Emily Flynn took home bronze in the women’s team pursuit; and teammate Ariane Bonhomme got the silver in the women’s team pursuit.



Historic tennis club to become multi-sport after redesign Rideau Lawn Tennis Club,1912

High-energy tennis & sport at the Rideau

photo: padolsky architects

Vision for Rideau Sports Centre

sketch: padolsky architects

By Charlie Pinkerton It’s a matter of when – not if – a new multi-sport facility will sit on the banks of the Rideau River. The vision for the Rideau Sports Centre, formerly known as the Rideau Tennis Club, was unveiled last month by Nicki Bridgland, CEO of the organization that shares the name of the facility being constructed, and Barry Padolsky, the architect tasked with redesigning the Overbrooke property that’s operated as a tennis club since 1912. “It will add so much: a place to play, a place to connect, a place to meet, a place to rejuvenate and to bring the entire city together,” Bridgland said.

Nicki Bridgland

The envisioned site will see added sports and social facilities to what for more than a century has been primarily a space for tennis. The facility will have the capabilities for sports including volleyball, basketball, dodgeball, soccer, floor hockey and beach volleyball. Bridgland is also the CEO and founder of the Ottawa Sport and Social Club, and sees the Rideau Sports Centre as

a new home for the recreational sports organization. “The Ottawa Sport and Social Club will be an anchor tenant at this new facility,” Bridgland said. The facilities will however be open to the public on a charge-per-use basis, unlike the Rideau Tennis Club, which had been exclusive to its members. “It will be no longer private so everyone of all age, skill, demographic, and sport background will be welcome to play,” Bridgland added. “It’s going to be a dynamic place,” multi-sport instructor Nick Patterson said about the site. Patterson’s Tennis For Life Ottawa will be another avid user of the sports complex. His sport instruction company will teach tennis on site every day of the week as well as other sports such as basketball and soccer. Rideau Tennis Club members will have access to the club until Oct. 31. That date marks the conclusion of what Bridgland calls “Phase 1” of the facility’s renovations. On Nov. 1, the club’s new domes, restaurant, yoga studio, and wellness centre, which, according to plan, will provide massage services and physiotherapy, are planned to open. The two new domes will feature enhanced lighting and will be used for separate purposes. One dome will have four resurfaced tennis courts, while the other will have new multi-sport surfaces. “Phase 2” of the renovation will be largely focused on redesigning the site’s clubhouse. The site has been lacking a proper social facility since a fire on Dec. 12,

2001 destroyed the Rideau Tennis and Squash Club Building that had stood on the property. The clubhouse was originally constructed in 1920 and stood for nearly 90 years. “The nifty feature to the building will be to open it up to see the beautiful park, its surroundings, and the tennis courts and the river,” said Padolsky, who’s Ottawa-based firm has undertaken redesigns of the Canadian Museum of Nature, the Rideau Centre and National Arts Centre, among other projects. “It’s been a significant investment,” said Bridgland, who chose not to reveal the exact cost of the club’s renovations. “For me the grounds are so incredible and the potential is so high for here, especially for introducing multi-sport, that I thought that the risk was worthwhile.” Bridgland said above all else she hopes the new, more accessible facilities will bring people together. “Sport and physical activity is an opportunity to connect, and my vision for this property is that this site and this centre will be a place of connection, whether you play sports or you don’t play sports.” Also announced at the Rideau Sports Centre’s visioning is a future in which the centre is assessable by cross-country ski via the Adawe Crossing, and by boat with docks on the Rideau River. The proposed changes must be approved by the National Capital Commission, which owns the area on the banks of the Rideau River. The Rideau Sports Centre has a 17-year lease remaining on the land, which was acquired from the RA Centre in the summer.

One of the sport’s longest tenured instructors and a familiar face in Ottawa’s tennis community is set to mirror the new Rideau Sports Centre’s expansion beyond tennis. A staple on the local courts for 35+ years, Nick Patterson is set to lead youth multi-sport programming at the enhanced facility on the Rideau River. That’s on top of teaching tennis 7 days a week. He expects to spend upwards of 30 hours a week working with players on their games. “I really enjoy it,” Patterson underlines. “People ask me if I find it difficult being out on the court for 6, 7, or 8 hours... Ironically, I’ll spend 6 hours on a court and then go hang out and play tennis with friends after I’ve been on the court for that long.” Three years ago, Patterson saw an explosion of tennis interest in Ottawa, which brought a surge of new students to his school for the sport, Tennis For Life Ottawa. He saw his time dedicated to tennis grow to match that of his other off-the-court career in the tech sector. “I like the juxtaposition,” Patterson says of his two worlds. “I’m really fortunate that I’ve found something I really enjoy.” An instructor for students from age 4-80, Patterson now coaches as many adults as minors. He says it’s a joy to teach every player. Different players learn in different ways, however, which is why Patterson runs private, semi-private or open-concept round-robin training sessions with his players. He’s also certified to deliver cardio tennis classes, which combines aerobics with a tennis lesson. Patterson won’t be alone in passing his passion on to others this winter. His team of instructors include former NCAA tennis players John Payette and Len Gyetko. Elite athletes from other sport backgrounds will also be joining Patterson as he introduces multi-sport instruction at the Rideau Sports Centre. “I’m a sports nut,” highlights the former Dalhousie University varsity hockey player. “I’m looking forward to branching out, with tennis still being my focus.” Camps at the Rideau Sports Centre multi-sport dome featuring basketball, soccer and volleyball, and sports conditioning, will be next up for Patterson to tackle, building upon the courses he already teaches in tennis and pickleball, as well as a Little Aces program for children aged 5-14 at Rideau. Again matching the Rideau Tennis Club’s club transformation into the Rideau Sports Centre, Tennis For Life Ottawa has now added a Sports For Life Ottawa division. Patterson will continue to be a mainstay at other local clubs on top of the Rideau. He’ll spend plenty of time further down the Rideau River at the Carleton Tennis Centre, where he’ll be starting the Little Aces program for entry-level tennis players aged 6-8. Whether it be at Valleystream Tennis Club, Craig Henry Tennis Club, the Ottawa Tennis and Lawn Bowling Club, Britannia Tennis Club, or at local schools, Patterson is always keen to spread his love for tennis – an inexpensive sport that can be practiced on public courts and at low-cost community clubs, and a highly social activity that naturally produces lasting friendships. “It’s really enjoyable,” notes the high-energy instructor. “When you’re teaching someone a new skill that they’re taking time out of their life to learn, to see them succeed, and to give them confidence in something that’s healthy and also helps them excel in their academic life or work life, it’s just great.”

613-203-8816 | nickpatterson9@yahoo.ca




Ottawa-brewed curler to challenge for American Olympic berth By Martin Boyce Three years after conceding her right to compete as a Canadian on the world stage, curler Jamie Sinclair finds herself at the height of her game and living out her dream – battling for a spot on the 2018 U.S. Olympic Team. The Anchorage, Alaska-born, Manotick-bred and St. Paul, Minnesota-based curler is set to challenge two other rinks at the Nov. 11-18 U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Omaha, Nebraska in hopes of representing her birth country. Sinclair has taken an unorthodox path to success – one that’s been brewing since her father passed down the tradition when she was nine – but says it was 10 years ago when she first realized that her dream of becoming a professional curler could become reality. “It was that gold medal game of the Canada (Winter) Games in 2007 when we won,” she recalls. “That was kind of the turning point when I was like, ‘Wow, I really like this – I really like winning and I can kind of do this.’” Then a 15-year-old, Sinclair had been competing alongside Ottawa native Rachel Homan, but began skipping

Jamie Sinclair

photo provided

her own rink and entering more and more competitive tournaments. Quickly refining her skills and rising up the ranks, she skipped the Carleton University rink to a 2014 Canadian Interuniversity Sport Championship win. Expecting to compete in the 2015 Winter Universiade, Sinclair’s career took a surprising turn. She got a phone call from the director of the U.S. High Performance Program of-

fering her the opportunity to curl south of the border. “It was a tough decision,” she recounts. “I had to think about it a lot but I finally came to the conclusion that it was just too good of an opportunity to pass up – an opportunity to take my game to the next level, play at the higher level, be fully funded, and get the resources of a top team in a country.” Having already won the 2017

U.S.A National Curling Championships earlier this year, Sinclair and her team are coming off their biggest win of the season at the Sept. 14-17 Shorty Jenkins Classic World Curling Tour event in Cornwall. “We weren’t playing to our full potential,” she explains. “But even so, it was interesting to see that, with our consistency and our strategy, we were able to pull off the win and, looking

Brown wraps up breakthrough year By Michael Sun She called it a “magical moment”. For 24-year-old triathlete Joanna Brown it was the 2015 Pan American Games that motivated her comeback from injuries and made her fall in love with the sport again. The Carp, Ont. native participated as a domestique (a racer serving the team, rather than for their own victory) in the downtown Toronto race with her family watching. “I don’t think I’ll ever forget the sound of people cheering as I ran through the grandstand,” she said. “It was pretty magical and I just really wanted to keep chasing that.” This year, she got back on the path to victory. At June’s Ottawa International Triathlon she captured her first senior national title. Brown said she put more pressure on herself than usual at that race. “I also really did enjoyed racing at home in Ottawa,” she said. “I really did want to do well. I had lot of friends and family cheering me on.” This year she capped off the most successful season she’s had yet with a 5th place finish at the World Triathlon Series Grand Final in Rotterdam, Netherlands on Sept. 16. Other highlights of Brown’s career-best season were a 7th place World Triathlon Series finish in Edmonton and 4th place finishes in the circuit’s races in Montreal and Stockholm, Sweden. To Brown, it was her Grand Final result that she was most proud of this season. “I was really proud of the way that I executed that race and worked really well with my teammate (American

Kirsten Kasper),” she commented. After her strong 2017 campaign, she’s ranked as 7th best in the world. She looked to be on an unstoppable path to such a position before almost two years of injuries plagued the triathlete from the end of 2013 until 2015. She’s been accumulating accolades almost since she picked up the sport of triathlon at the age of 14 at Ottawa’s Bytown Storm Triathlon Club. Just a year after she started she won the Valleyfield Eastern Canadian Championships. In 2010, she took bronze at the International Triathlon Union World Junior Championship Grand Final. In 2011, she joined the national team and in 2012 she medaled in four Pan American Cup races (taking 1st place in one) as well as finishing 3rd the International Triathlon Union World Under-23 Championships. Just over a year later, the injuries struck. Brown dealt with plantar fasciitis on both her feet, which she said was the cause of overtraining. She also fractured the radial head in her elbow 7 weeks before the 2015 Pan American Games. “It really seemed like I couldn’t catch a break and I kept getting injured,” she noted. “Definitely the first thought that kind of goes through your mind when you get injured or something start hurting is frustration and you really have to take a step back and be patient and know it’s a long term sport.” Brown said she considered leaving the sport and called the injuries a mental battle. “In the very beginning, after a few injuries, I

back, we still had some room for improvement.” With the big win, Sinclair – who also runs her own curling video log on YouTube, sharing behind the scenes of her curling life – says she and her rink will head into the Olympic trials with a boost of confidence and ready for a battle each game. “It’s my first Olympic trials,” she notes. “There’s a lot of pressure in that kind of tournament. We just have to take one game at a time and not get ahead of ourselves.” If all goes well for her at trials, she’ll head to her first Olympics where a reunion with Homan could be in store. The 25-year-old says she’s excited and looks forward to that potential matchup between former teammates at the highest level in the world. She says she’d shed tears of joy and feel “a mess of emotions” just competing at the Olympics – her ultimate dream and would-be cherry on top of an already successful young career. “There’s been a lot of ups and downs, but I get to do what I love, everyday,” she adds. “Right now, I’m a fulltime curler and that’s been my dream forever so I have no complaints.”

Joanna Brown

photo: marc desrosiers/triathlon canada

really wasn’t sure if I wanted to keep doing triathlon because I was kind of burned out and pretty sick of being injured,” she said. The injuries were a learning experience, according to her. “Having a really supportive group around me and having training partners that have been encouraging, and just really knowing my body a lot of better, and growing up, and being a bit more mature, it all helps,” added the athlete now based in Victoria, B.C. Brown said this season exceeded her expectations because she stayed healthy and consistent. “I was just so happy with the way that everything progressed this year, how I was able to build on the momentum from the beginning of

the year,” she added. She said its swimming that’s been her biggest improvement. “Especially in the ITU [World Triathlon Series] that’s so important just to have a good swim because it sets up your entire race so that’s something I’ve worked on for a number of years.” Brown said every race is memorable, good or bad. However, making the Olympics are her ultimate goal. “It’s a dream realized and it’s the pinnacle of our sport, competing at the Olympics,” she said of the possibility. “I think I would be really proud of everything I put in to qualify and I would try to enjoy every minute I get to be there.” If she qualifies for the Olympics, it could be her most magical moment of all.



Ravens roll to victory in 4th straight year

Volunteers spur great Griffins lacrosse year

PANDA continued from cover

photo: valerie wutti



The Ottawa Gee-Gees put an end to the Carleton Ravens best-ever rugby season. A combination of their 31-0 win over Carleton and a pair of recently announced forfeited wins from earlier this season by Laval, have also launched the University of Ottawa, coached by 2016 Ottawa Sports Awards Female Coach of the Year, Jen Boyd, into first place in the RSEQ standings. They host Montreal on Oct. 21 to determine which team will head to the U Sports National Championships in Lethbridge, Alta. Carleton University finished with a record of 4-3.

MEN’S SOCCER: RAVENS ROLL TO OUA EAST TITLE The Carleton Ravens captured the OUA East title with a 1-0 shutout against the UOIT Ridgebacks on Oct. 14. It’s been six years since the Ravens last won the division title. Their bid to become U Sports champions continues in the OUA conference quarter finals on either Oct 28 or 29.

WOMEN’S SOCCER: GEE-GEES POISED TO MAKE RUN AT NATIONALS The Gee-Gees and Ravens women’s soccer teams will meet in the final game of both of their regular seasons on Oct. 22. Carleton will be playing for its pride as the Ravens were eliminated from playoff contention following their 2-1 loss to UOIT on Oct. 14. Ottawa sits in 2nd place in the OUA East, trailing only OUIT.

FOOTBALL: PANDA GAME WIN POINTLESS IF RAVENS MISS PLAYOFFS The Ottawa Gee-Gees will hope to bolster their playoff position in their final game of the season against the OUA’s top team and the 4th ranked team in the country, the Western Mustangs. At 5-2 the Gee-Gees have secured a playoff spot, but lots may change in the OUA’s final weekend of regular season play. The Carleton Ravens are on the outside-looking-in with one game remaining on their schedule. They’ll have to knock off the 4-3 Guelph Gryphons to keep their postseason hopes alive.

MEN’S HOCKEY: RAVENS BEAT GEE-GEES IN OT TO START SEASON Both Carleton University and the University of Ottawa started their season’s outside of the U Sports Top 10. So far, both teams are 1-1. The Ravens defeated the Gee-Gees 6-5 in an overtime thriller at Carleton’s Ice House in both teams’ first game of the season. They’ll meet on three more occasions in regular season play.

WOMEN’S HOCKEY: RAVENS, GEE-GEES MATCH UP OCT. 22 Both the Gee-Gees and the Ravens opened their regular season with home wins. Ottawa beat Concordia by a score of 3-1, while the Carleton bested Montreal 2-1. The teams face-off against each other for the first time this season on Oct. 22 at the Carleton University Ice House.

Arruda added the exclamation point with a spike of the football and the north side of the stadium – the side designated for the Ravens’ fans – emptied onto the field at TD Place in what’s become Panda Game tradition. “The feeling itself is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before in my life. It’s so great of a magnitude it’s difficult to explain,” Carter said of the on-field celebration. Arruda was awarded the game ball by the Ravens while Carter was just 18 rushing yards short of the Ravens single game record that he set 2 weeks prior in Carleton’s homecoming game loss to the Waterloo Warriors. Bennett was named the OUA Defensive Player of the Week for his effort against the Ravens. He led the Gee-Gees in tackles, had two endzone pass breakups, added an interception and had 88 kick return yards. It was the 4th straight year that Carleton won the Panda Game. Three of those victories have come down to the game’s final play. “I don’t think there are any other teams in U Sports that have that type of atmosphere in one game,” Carter said of the event’s rowdy feel. Before the game, players and fans of both teams put the rivalry aside and joined each other in an emotional moment of silence to pay respect to Loic Kayembe, a University of Ottawa student and Gee-Gees football player who died unexpectedly the weekend before the game. Many Ottawa players also wore equipment with the Kayembe’s number 49 to honour his life. The Ravens lost their next game against the Western Mustangs 5114, but won their following matchup against the Toronto Varsity Blues 43-0. Carter has since crossed the 1000-yard mark for the Ravens.The 3-4 Ravens will need to beat the 4-3 Guelph Gryphons at home in their last game of the season on Oct. 21 for a chance to make the OUA playoffs. The Gee-Gees rebounded from the loss with a 40-30 win against the Waterloo Warriors to secure a playoff spot. Bennett had an interception returned for a touchdown to put the Gee-Gees ahead in that game with less than 4 minutes left. He was recognized as the OUA Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts in that game. Their last game of the regular season is against the 7-0 Western Mustangs in London.

Provincial Silver-Medallist Gloucester Griffins Novice 1 Team. Powered by dedicated volunteers, the Gloucester Griffins Minor Lacrosse Association had another strong season with medal-winning teams at provincials, a new and improved house league program and /griffinsminorlacrosse successful annual tournaments. “Your volunteers are the lifeblood @griffinslax of your organization,” underlines Gloucester Lacrosse Assocaition President Greg Rampley, noting it’s the volunteers that fueled the successful season and made a better environment for all the athletes. The Griffins capped off their 2017 campaign with two silver medals in Novice and Peewee ‘B’ divisions at the Ontario Lacrosse Championships in early August. On top of provincial medals, the ‘Bantam 2’ team triumphed at the Simcoe Father’s Day tournament and snagged silver in the Ray Broadworth Tournament and Zone 5 championships. For the first time in more than five years, the club fielded a Peewee Girls competitive team in multiple tournaments, including provincials. “This season represented a great building block for the GLA Girls lacrosse program that we can build on going forward,” signals Rampley, adding that 2018’s focus will be on player recruitment across all programs. In an effort to grow their existing house league program, the club teamed up with the Nepean Knights Minor Lacrosse Association for an interlocking house league at the boys’ Tyke, Bantam and Midget levels. “It was really great because it gave the kids more diversity in the teams they play against,” he explains. “We had a lot of great feedback and we’ll look to expand that next year as well.” The Gloucester Griffins hosted two invitational tournaments this year, which were “critical” in demonstrating what the Griffins community is all about, but also in providing players with something to compete for at home. In early June, the club hosted 26 teams from Ontario and Nova Scotia at the Ottawa Girls Summer Shootout for the second year in a row. “In terms of showcase, that is of huge importance,” says Rampley, highlighting the consistent growth of the GLA girls’ program. “We can show the girls that are playing house league that you can play this around the province and compete against other girls.” Two weeks later, the club hosted its annual Ray Broadworth Memorial Tournament that had 41 teams from Ontario and Quebec participate in nine different divisions. Over the three-day tournament, four Griffins teams made the finals – the Novice 1, Peewee 1, Bantam 2 and Midget squads. The GLA finally wrapped up the season with its annual general meeting on Aug. 31, electing a new president, Ian Woolridge, and honouring five volunteers. Mike McKay, Girls Program Convenor, was honoured as volunteer of the year for his work as a non-parent volunteer. He coordinated the GLA Girls Interlocking House League Program and organized the Girls Shootout Tournament. Mark Allen & Sean Sommers (‘Bantam 2’ Coaches) were honoured as Competitive Coaches of the Year, while Sacha Gagnon (Midget Coach) and Leasa Kay (Girls Bantam-Midget Coach) were also honoured as House League Coaches of the Year. “If there’s one thing I’m proud of, it’s the volunteer base that’s organized lacrosse in our community,” highlights Rampley, who’s worked closely with other local lacrosse clubs/programs. “Over the last three years in particular, we’ve been able to really focus on making the game about the kids and work collaboratively to help each other be successful.”




Young soccer stars shine in Danone Nations Cup By Charlie Pinkerton

Rockin’ Rebelles Wrap

Sports-études program offers personalized training with JR

Jean-Robert Léger has a job that simply doesn’t exist at just about every other school in Canada. “JR” is the strength coach at Louis-Riel high school, and his role is emblematic of a sports-study program that goes way above and beyond what’s offered in the classic scholastic setting. “I think the kids are so fortunate to be in a program like this, signals Léger. “It’s unbelievable.” When students begin working with JR in Grade 9, it’s all about teaching the proper mechanics of physical training, not lifting big weights. “We want to make the kids stronger, jump higher, move faster, but we don’t cheat the kids here,” Léger underlines. “We don’t skip any steps. ‘This is what you need to learn. Until you learn it, we’re not going to increase the load.’” The program becomes more complex in Grade 10 and beyond, and becomes tailored to improve each athlete individually in their chosen sport. The plan takes into account periodization throughout the year to match competition schedules and peak performance periods along with rest and recovery. A private trainer outside school/in the summer, JR loves the variety in helping athletes for many different sports, and thrives on the energy that permeates the Dome LR – a first-class facility with a complete weightroom, Canada’s only 400-metre indoor track, a gym floor, a full-size turf field and a physio clinic. Many Olympians and professional athletes train at the

Dome, and just about any east-end hockey player who’s made it to the pros in recent years has worked with JR – amongst them: the New York Islanders’ Alan Quine, Belleville/Ottawa Senators player Michael Blunden, and brothers/Louis-Riel grads Alex and Erik Gudbranson of the Toronto Marlies and Vancouver Canucks. But the highly-certified University of Ottawa kinesiology grad isn’t the only one involved in the sportsétudes program with that kind of pedigree. Others are coaches for Team Canada on top of the Louis-Riel Rebelles, for example. “We have athletic therapists involved, psychologists, nutritionists. Every teacher in the program is a specialist in their field,” Léger highlights. “And what those teachers do with those kids outside of their sport – helping them with their schoolwork after school, talking to them all the time – they’re very fortunate to have this in a school.” JR calls himself a “strict trainer” who demands a lot from his student-athletes. “The reason I’m strict is I want to teach the kids good values,” explains Léger, noting respect, intensity (not just in physical training, but also mental focus), and punctuality are traits that will serve students well in all aspects of life, not just sport. “It’s not only about training athletes here.” Now 22 years into his career, JR still carries as much passion and love for physical training as ever. “Every day when I get up, it’s not a job to me,” adds Léger. “Seeing a kid able to perform at another level, to me that’s the greatest joy and the biggest reward.”

Sports-études à Louis-Riel offre l’entraînement personnel avec JR

Jean-Robert Léger a un emploi plutôt rare dans les écoles au Canada. « JR » est l’entraîneur physique à l’école secondaire Louis-Riel, et son rôle est très emblématique dans un programme sports-études qui va bien au-delà de ce qui est offert habituellement en milieu scolaire. «  Je pense que les élèves ont beaucoup de chance de participer à un programme comme celui-ci, dit Jean-Robert. C’est incroyable. » Quand les élèves commencent à s’entraîner avec JR en 9e année, ils apprennent surtout les notions de base de l’entraînement physique. «  Nous voulons que les enfants soient plus forts, qu’ils puissent sauter plus loin et bouger plus rapidement, mais nous ne prenons pas de raccourcis avec eux, déclare Jean-Robert. Nous ne sautons aucune étape. ‘C’est ce que tu as besoin d’apprendre. Et tant que tu ne l’auras pas appris, nous n’allons pas augmenter la charge’. » Le programme devient plus complexe à partir de la 10e année et il est adapté de manière à permettre à chaque athlète d’améliorer sa performance dans le sport de son choix. Le plan tient compte de la périodisation toute l’année et il est élaboré en fonction des horaires de compétition et des périodes de repos et de récupération. JR aime aider des athlètes qui exercent des sports variés, et il se nourrit de l’énergie qui imprègne

le Dôme LR – un complexe haut de gamme doté d’une salle de musculation complète, de la seule piste d’athlétisme intérieure de 400 m au Canada, d’un gymnase, d’un terrain en gazon pleine grandeur et d’une clinique de physiothérapie. Beaucoup d’athlètes olympiques et professionnels s’entraînent au Dôme, et presque tous les joueurs de hockey de l’est de la ville qui ont été repêchés par une équipe professionnelle au cours des dernières années ont travaillé avec JR. Mais ce brillant diplômé du programme de kinésiologie de l’Université d’Ottawa n’est pas le seul professionnel au profil impressionnant à participer au programme sports-études. En plus des Rebelles de Louis-Riel, d’autres sont aussi entraîneurs pour Équipe Canada, par exemple. « Nous avons des thérapeutes du sport, des psychologues et des diététistes. Chaque enseignant du programme est un spécialiste

dans son domaine, souligne JR. Considérant ce que font ces enseignants pour les élèves en dehors des activités sportives – en les aidant avec leurs devoirs après l’école, en prenant le temps de leur parler – on a beaucoup de chance d’avoir cette ressource dans notre école. » JR se décrit comme un « entraîneur strict » qui exige beaucoup de ses élèves-athlètes. « La raison pour laquelle je suis strict est que je veux inculquer de bonnes valeurs aux enfants », explique-t-il, en soulignant que le respect, l’effort intense (pas seulement dans l’entraînement physique, mais aussi dans la concentration mentale) et la ponctualité sont des traits de caractère qui seront utiles aux élèves dans tous les aspects de leur vie, pas seulement le sport. « Nous ne faisons pas qu’entraîner des athlètes ici. » Après 22 ans de carrière, JR est toujours animé de la même passion et du même amour pour l’entraînement physique qu’à ses débuts. « Chaque jour quand je me lève, je ne considère pas que je vais travailler, indique JR. Il n’y a pas de plus grande joie ou de plus grande récompense pour moi que de voir un enfant évoluer habilement à un niveau supérieur. »


A trio of Ottawa’s brightest young soccer stars represented Canada on the world stage last month. At the Danone Nations Cup held at the Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey, near New York, Cyrann Essindi, Ben Penticost and Hadi Assaad each made their presence felt for Team Canada. The trio of Ottawa players helped Canada to 6th place, tying the team’s best ever finish in the tournament that was first held in 2000. Essindi, Penticost and Assaad were selected to represent Canada after attending a series of regional spring camps before being divided into teams to compete in a play-in game for the right to represent the country. The Ottawa boys’ team won. The tournament is billed as “the world’s biggest football tournament for children aged 10 to 12”. Teams from 32 countries around the world competed in this year’s tournament, which wrapped came to an end of Sept. 24. Canada swept its group stage games with wins against Uruguay, Japan and Belgium to finish first in their group. In the round of 16, Canada beat the United Arab Emirates 2-1, but lost to Morocco in the quarter-final by a score of 2-0. They beat Ghana in penalty kicks in the consolation playoffs before losing to Germany in penalties to finish in 6th place. It was also the first year the tournament included a girls’ division. Canada’s girls team, coached by West Ottawa Soccer Club technical director Kristina Kiss, placed 2nd in the 6 team tournament.

CYRANN ESSINDI On Canada’s team, Cyrann Essindi represented the Cumberland United Soccer Club. He was the only 11-year-old out of Ottawa’s 3 players. His highlight of the tournament came in Canada’s 1st game against Uruguay. He scored all 3 of Canada’s goals in their shutout win. He was the second leading scorer in the tournament with 6 goals for Canada. Throughout the tournament he also enjoyed hanging out with players from other

Ben Penticost and Cyrann Essindi

photo provided

countries. “It was very fun singing with them, playing music and dancing,” Essindi noted. He, Penticost and Assaad had never played on the same team before the tournament. This didn’t stop them from instantly meshing well on the pitch. “When we started playing together we had a connection really quickly,” Essindi added. “It was very fun being with them.”

BEN PENTICOST Ben Penticost, 12, of the St. Anthony Futuro Soccer Academy had never experienced a tournament like the Danone Nations Cup before. “It was a really proud feeling to be selected amongst all of the other kids that tried out across Canada,” Penticost said. To Penticost, the best part of the tournament was hanging out with players coming from different countries and different cultures. His personal on-the-field highlight came against Japan. Penticost substituted into the game following a goal by the Japanese. With Canada in the lead 2-1 he scored another for

the red and white to halt the opposition’s momentum and make the final score 3-1. At first, he was sad that the team only finished 6th, but in the weeks since the tournament he’s realized how impressive it was to match Canada’s best result ever. “It was an amazing accomplishment,” Penticost said.

HADI ASSAAD Representing Ottawa South United, 12-year-old Hadi Assaad said it was amazing to play for his country on the world stage. “It felt great. It’s a once in a lifetime chance and it was a good experience,” Assaad said. The moment of the tournament that stood out the most for him was Canada’s game against Belgium. After assisting on the team’s first goal, Assaad netted the winner to give Canada a 2-1 victory. He thinks Canada’s record tying result in the tournament is a positive sign for the future of Canadian soccer. “If you go from the youth and think of the next generation (of Canadian soccer) it’s going to turn out well,” Assaad added.


Cobras win club’s firstever Ontario Cup crown in between 2 regional titles By Dan Plouffe We are the Champions must have sounded like a broken record to the Cumberland United under-13 girls’ soccer team, as the groundbreaking Cobra queens captured 3 separate championships in 5 days between Sept. 14-18. On Thursday evening, they wrapped up an undefeated season playing up an age group in the East Region Soccer League U14 girls’ division. On Saturday, they were down in Toronto to finish off a perfect run in the provincial U13 girls’ knockout competition, becoming their club’s first-ever Ontario Cup champions. And then it was back home for an ER Cup triumph on Monday night. That earned the players a few well-deserved days off from practice, though that directive proved unpopular. “They were raring to go and wanted to play more,” smiles coach Duane Bonadie, who wasn’t surprised his group reacted that way. “They’re really dedicated. All through the winter, 5 days a

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week, these girls are training. Not many clubs out there are doing that right now. “They all work really hard. I’m really proud of my team.” The Cobras won the second and third crowns of the trio without leading scorer Alexis Virgo, who injured her ankle 15 minutes into the first half of the Ontario Cup final in Vaughan. The loss of the fleet-footed striker (or outside back) – one of several players to attend a Team Ontario talent ID camp following the season – was a big blow, notes Bonadie, but far from a death blow. “We were able to do it without her, which is a great testament to the team and that we have enough depth to account for losing Alexis,” explains Bonadie, whose daughter Riley finished a spectacular 9-pass play – 1 of her 2 second-half goals – to lift Cumberland to a 3-1 victory over Oshawa. “I’ve saved the (Ontario Soccer) video and the article,” adds the long-time local men’s premier player. “It was really cool. I got calls

from some friends I used to play soccer with who’d heard about it. It was great to reconnect with them.” Far less enjoyable, Bonadie highlights, was having his players soak him with the traditional championship cooler dump. “I got the Gatorade shower, and then they doused me with water, which helped a little bit, but I didn’t get to shower, so I was sticky the entire way home,” he underlines. “It was a 4-and-a-half hour drive.” It was a rewarding sensation at the same time, however, to celebrate the big win with a core of a dozen players he’s coached for the past 4 years. “That’s why they’re strong – they know each other very well,” Bonadie indicates. “They’ve played and practiced together for so many years that they know each other inside and out. It’s a really great group. They’ve got a great dynamic. They’re like sisters now.”




COBRAS continues on p.8






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NCAA player returns home to Gee-Gees team of familiar faces

Cumberland Cobras Column

Cobras’ after-school Academy ‘revolutionary’

The Cumberland Cobras Elite Academy has long carried a simple formula to producing top players: train with the best players, with the best coaches, more often than others, and compete at the highest levels. And then last year, the club added one more secret ingredient that’s made an enormous difference: do it all by 5:30 p.m. “It’s kind of revolutionized things for us,” Cumberland United Soccer Club General Manager Pavel Cancura says of his club’s daily after-school Academy format. “It’s an opportunity for them to train more than they ever have in an environment that’s really unmatched anywhere around here.” In order to facilitate afternoon travel, the Cobras setup bus routes to bring players from their schools to the Superdome Sports Centre or Millennium Fields training sites. “A traditional soccer player will get home at 4 from school, scrambles to inhale something for dinner, back to train at 7 or 8, tries to do his homework after that – if you’re doing it 3 or 4 times a week, that’s a busy week for the family and the kids,” highlights Cancura. “Here, they’re done by 5:30. They can go home and have dinner, do their homework, some are taking up other activities. “The feedback we’ve been getting is amazing.”

ACADEMY SETUP MATCHES UP WITH THE BEST Surveyed after the program’s first year, participants reported major strides in player growth and family life. “It’s all outstanding,” Cancura adds. “When we do quantitative tests with the players, they’ve been off the charts compared to anything we’ve ever seen.” That’s the product of a well-researched and well-practiced program that’s structured to achieve different targets each day and at different times of year. Training loads and schedules are carefully crafted so that players’ physical, technical, tactical and social development is balanced and optimized across the entire season. This includes the after-school training on each weeknight, and then 11v11 inter-squad sessions, friendlies, games or tournaments on Saturdays. It also involves cross-training (strength, conditioning, yoga and general athletic skills) and mental/psychological development (sports psyche, goal setting, nutrition). “Everyone has become a bit of marketing machine, but this is legit,” Cancura underlines. “You look at professional or elite academies around the world, and this seems to add up.”

CUMBERLAND COBRAS SET TO ENTER OPDL Players are welcomed for trials with the Cobras Elite Academy at any time, though fall is the best given it is the end of one season and the start of the next. Cobras Academy teams generally play up an age group in the top East Region Soccer League divisions, while the under-13 boys’ and girls’ squads will debut in the Ontario Player Development League come spring 2018. “When you have this structure in place, we’re not changing much,” Cancura says of Cumberland joining the top level of youth highperformance soccer in the province. “For those players who want to go as far as they can with soccer, we’re really excited to give them the opportunity to do it.”


By Charlie Pinkerton As their regular season reaches its end, members of the University of Ottawa women’s soccer team have their sights set on nationals. But for one Gee-Gees player, this season has meant more than the team’s 10-1-4 record, it’s been about regaining her love for the sport. Miranda Smith is playing her first season with the GeeGees. This last three years she spent as a member of the University of Memphis’ women’s soccer team. “Being there made it feel like I didn’t love soccer anymore,” the St. Matthew High School graduate said of her National Collegiate Athletic Association Division 1 experience. Before going to the United States on a scholarship to play the sport, she was one of the brightest young soccer stars in the city. In October 2013, the year before she went down south to play soccer, she had been a part of, an FC Capital United U17 girls team that had done what no Ottawa team had done before; the undefeated Ontario Youth Soccer League team (10-0-4) won a league division title and played in the championship final. At Memphis, discouraging coaching staff were detrimental to her confidence and what she had enjoyed about the game had been lost. “I figured that I had worked

Vanessa El-Asmar (left) & Miranda Smith.

photo: ellen bond

my whole life to go away to school and get a (soccer) scholarship and that was supposed to be the reward for everything that I did and I want to enjoy it.,” Smith added. “With these possibly being the last few years of my soccer career I didn’t want to end soccer hating it.” After last season with the Memphis Tigers, she chose to return to her home-town of Ottawa to play for Gee-Gees coach Steve Johnson, who she’s known since before she was a teenager. “Coming back really made me love soccer again,” Smith said, adding that she’s regained

photo: greg mason

her confidence as well. “It’s nice to be back and play with old teammates,” Smith noted. One of those familiar faces is her former FC Capital United teammate and fifth-year GeeGee Vanessa El-Asmar. Smith and El-Asmar had played together in the season before the team’s historic 2013 year. Now the pair both anchor the University of Ottawa’s midfield unit. El-Asmar insisted that playing with Smith again has been easy. “Right away we clicked really well,” El-Asmar said. “Automatically me and her were the

first ones to grow close when she came.” “It’s nice to have a familiar face,” Smith said. “She was very welcoming with me and even that helps on the field.” The Ottawa Gee-Gees play their final game of the regular season at home against the Carleton Ravens on Oct. 22. They beat the Ravens earlier this season at Carleton by a score of 2-1. Smith had an assist in that game. The team is in second place in the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) east division and will be awarded with a bye in the first round of the OUA playoffs with a win.

COBRAS: ‘The first of many’ CU teams to win Ontario crowns, coach predicts continued from p.7 The Cumberland girls made good on their club’s first-ever appearance in an Ontario Cup final – the product in large part, says Bonadie, of the Cobras Academy program put in place in recent seasons, and particularly the popular after-school elite academy that began a year ago. “The club is just getting better and better, more profile, and better players,” signals Bonadie, whose club is set to join the Ontario Player Development League at the U13 level next year – a stream his group may like to enter in the future themselves. “The coaching is excellent; the program is second to none; it’s fantastic,” he adds. “We’re just the first of many teams that will make the Ontario Cup final for sure.”

OH-SO-CLOSE FOR MANY LOCAL PROVINCIAL-LEVEL TEAMS With most divisions’ regular seasons

wrapping up by Oct. 22, a number of local OPDL teams are likely longing for the league to include post-season playoffs instead of naming its overall champion based on the team that accumulates the most points over the course of the regular season. The OSU U14 boys and U15 girls, and the West Ottawa U16 boys, were all in contention for east division titles heading into their final games (which would earn them a spot in the end-of-season Charity Shield friendly between the division champs), but were all out of reach of teams’ point totals in other divisions. The OSU and West Ottawa U15 boys held out the lone hopes for the region to secure an OPDL league title, in a 3-way battle alongside Toronto FC heading into their final weekend. OSU’s Jade Taylor-Ryan (with 23 goals in U15 girls’ play) and Ronan Kratt (with 15 in U14 boys) were poised to win their east division scoring races. The West Ottawa Warriors U17 girls did reach the playoffs in the soon-to-be-phased-

out Ontario Youth Soccer League. With matching records of 8 wins, 5 losses and 3 ties, West Ottawa topped OSU 2-1 in a showdown for the final playoff spot, but then fell 1-0 to Burlington the next week in the crossover semi-finals.

CANADIAN COLOURS OSU product Kris Twardek made his debut for the Canadian senior men’s national team on Oct. 8 in Houston. The Millwall FC pro player entered in the late stages of Canada’s 1-0 friendly defeat to El Salvador. The 20-year-old was Canada’s youngest player for the game. Three local players participated in Team Canada’s U-17 women’s national team EXCEL program camp from Sept. 28-Oct. 5. Isabella Hanisch (OSU), Ariel Young (Fury) and Olivia Cooke (West Ottawa) were all in Burnaby, B.C. as the crew gets ready for next April’s CONCACAF Women’s U-17 Championship in Nicaragua.


OTTAWA SPORTSPAGE SNAPSHOTS 2 LOCAL ATHLETES MEDAL AT TORONTO 2017 INVICTUS GAMES A pair of Ottawa athletes brought home medals from the Invictus Games held in Toronto from Sept. 23-30. Gatineau’s Natacha Dupuis, one of Team Canada’s captains at the Games, won three gold medals. She came in 1st place in the 100-metre, 200 m, and 400 m races. Ottawa’s Caroline Cauvin won two bronze medals in indoor rowing for Canada. She placed 3rd in the women’s IR5 four-minute endurance race and the IR5 one-minute sprint. Other competitors from Ottawa included Adam Jones, Geoff De Melo, Michael Fuentespina, Scott Atkinson and Suzanne Barrette. The Invictus Games are an international athletic competition for injured or ill members of the armed forces.

OTTAWA FENCER HELPS CANADA TO NEW WORLD CUP HIGH Kelleigh Ryan of Ottawa helped Canada’s women’s foil team to its best ever finish at October’s Fencing World Cup in Cancun, Mexico. The team, coached by Ottawa Fencing’s Paul ApSimon, was ranked 7th in the world going into the tournament. The team defeated Great Britain 45-36, then 4th ranked France by a score of 45-37, before losing to Italy in the semifinals. They lost to the United States in the bronze medal contest by a score of 33-26. The record-breaking finish at the World Cup comes in the same year they placed 6th at the World Championships.

2 LOCAL SWIMMERS AMONG TEAM CANADA’S FIRST COMMONWEALTH GAMES NOMINEES Swimming Canada has chosen two Ottawa athletes to compete for Canada in the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, from April 4-15, 2018. Erika Seltenreich-Hodgson and Eli Wall, both 22, will represent the nation’s capital at the Games. A 2016 Olympian, Barrhaven’s Seltenreich-Hodgson has swam with the Nepean-Kanata Barracudas and the Greater Ottawa Kingfish in Ottawa and now trains at Swimming Canada’s High Performance Centre in Vancouver. She barely missed the podium at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, setting personal-best marks in the 200 m IM and the 400 m IM. Wall also swam with the Kingfish and is now a swimmer at the University of Toronto Swim Club.

SLALOM PADDLER LANDS NEW WORLDS PB Ottawa’s Cam Smedley registered a personal best at the Canoe Slalom World Championships. The 26-yearold paddled his way to an 18th overall finish in the men’s canoe singles at the event held in Pau, France from Sept. 27-Oct. 1. Smedley was only 5.14 seconds behind the top finisher in the semifinal round of the competition. He was just 3 seconds behind making the event’s final round.

TEAM HOMAN WINS OUT WEST Team Homan picked up right where they left off after spending most of September away from competition. The team won the Prestige Hotels & Resorts Curling Classic - only their second World Curling Tour event of the season - in Vernon, B.C., held from Sept. 29-Oct. 2. The Ottawa Curling Club Rink followed that up with a victory at the Curlers Corner Autumn Gold Curling Classic held at the Calgary Curling Club from Oct. 6-9. Between tournaments, Homan joined Team Canada in Toronto to unveil Canada’s uniforms for the upcoming Olympic Games.

FOLDED GLOUCESTER NRL RINGETTE TEAM DISPERSES PLAYERS The National Ringette League held a special player draft for the Capital Region after the Gloucester Devils ceased operations in October. The draft that took place on Oct. 11 saw 9 players chosen by the Ottawa Ice and the Gatineau Fusion. The players selected in the order listed were: Jasmine Leblanc (Ottawa), Kaitlyn Youldon (Gatineau), Allison Biewald (Gatineau), Jenna van Koppen (Ottawa), Lauren McGonigal (Ottawa), Alison O’Brien (Gatineau), Jessica Mainwood (Gatineau), Liza Roik (Ottawa), Amanda Gour (Gatineau).

RIDEAU PADDLER GOLDEN AT PAN AM CHAMPIONSHIPS Isaac Finkelstein captured one of the Canadian junior team’s 13 Gold Medals at the Pan American Sprint Canoe Kayak Championships. At the championships held Oct. 12-15 in Ibarra, Ecuador, 18-year-old Finkelstein won first place in the C1 1000 m, with a time of 4:18:41. Finkelstein, of the Rideau Canoe Club, later won a bronze in the C1 200 m.

TEAM GB SHORT TRACK SPEED SKATERS RANKED 13TH AFTER 2 OF 4 OLYMPIC QUALIFIER MEETS Ottawa natives Samantha and Hannah Morrison will need some big performances in a pair of November World Cups in order to secure a 2018 Winter Olympic berth for their Great Britain women’s 3,000-metre short track speed skating relay team. With 9th and 14th-place finishes in the season’s first 2 events in Hungary and the Netherlands, their team is currently ranked 13th overall. There are 8 spots up for grabs for the PyeongChang Games, which will be awarded after the 4 fall World Cups. The Morrison sisters’ father, former Gloucester Concordes head coach Dave Morrison, was born in the UK while his father was there on a military posting, which gives his girls the right to compete for Team GB thanks to their dual citizenship.

NEPEAN SKATER 5TH IN SEASON DEBUT IN MONTREAL Nepean Skating Club product Alaine Chartrand kicked off her 2017-2018 season in low gear at the Autumn Classic International event from Sept. 20-23 in Montreal. The 21-year-old placed 6th in both the short program and free skate to finish 5th overall, scoring 162.42 points – well off the 182.07 she earned on an injured ankle to win bronze at last season’s Canadian Tire National Skating Championships in Ottawa. Chartrand will be chasing 1 of 3 available Canadian women’s positions on the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic team this season.


Athletes from the Rideau Canoe Club and the Ottawa River Canoe Club travelled to Racice, Czech Republic to compete as part of Team Canada in the Olympic Hopes Regatta held from Sept. 15-17. The event is for paddlers born in 2000 or later, who hope to measure their competition against the best in the world with the goal of qualifying for the next Olympic Games. Michaela Ermanovics of the Rideau Canoe Club picked up a 5th place finish in the C2 Women’s 1000m, a 6th place finish in the C2 Women’s 200m, and 8th place in the C1 Women’s 200m. Nikole Gorelova of the Ottawa River Canoe Club came 5th in the C2 Women’s 1000m, 7th in the C1 Women’s 1000m, and 7th in the C2 Women’s 200m. Rideau’s Adam Richard placed 6th in the C4 Men’s 200m. Matthew O’Neill came 7th in the C2 Men’s 200m and 8th in the C2 Men’s 1000m and C1 Men’s 500m. Maren Bradley, of Rideau, placed 9th in the K1 Women’s 1000m. Canada earned 5 bronze medals, 3 silvers and 1 gold, ranking in 6th place of 33 countries.

LOCAL SKELETON RACER 2ND IN TIGHT NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP RACES Mirela Rahneva of Ottawa won a silver medal at the Canadian Skeleton Championships held in Calgary on Oct. 14. The 29-yearold clocked a time of 1:55:11 on the skeleton track at Winsport’s Canada Olympic Park. She was only .13 of a second behind the Canadian champion, Calgary’s Elisabeth Vathje. Canada’s team for the upcoming International Bobsled and Skeleton World Cup will be announced on Nov. 1. Rahneva finished last season – her rookie year on the World Cup circuit – ranked 3rd in the world.

SILVER SHOT FOR ARCHER AT WORLD YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIPS Gatineau’s Alexandra Paquette won a silver medal for Canada at the World Youth Archery Championships from Oct. 2-8 in Rosario, Argentina. The South Nation Archery Club member defeated archers from the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Great Britain and Iran before losing to Great Britain in the women’s compound cadet category, for girls ages 15 and 16. Canada won no gold medals and had only one other silver medal in the competition.

OSU Force Academy Zone

OSU banquet blowout celebrates big 2017 It’s cause for celebration when a soccer club can send 20+ players to postsecondary institutions year after year because of the skills they’ve built under the umbrella of the organization. A spirited, sold-out crowd of 600+ came together to salute Ottawa South United Soccer Club’s graduating class alongside a pile of other accomplishments for Force teams, players, staff and the club. There were a long list of highlights at the provincial, national and international level in 2017, which has become an annual tradition for the club as well. Strong teams at the highest level are amongst the trademarks. The Force U15 girls became the first team from Eastern Ontario to capture an Ontario Player Development League Cup, with Claire Ditchburn becoming the first female head coach to win an OPDL crown. With the 2017 season down to its final contests, a number of OSU teams were also well-positioned to capture OPDL division crowns in league play. Also celebrated was the OSU Force’s new partnership with the Vancouver Whitecaps FC. In the fall the OSU finalized its partnership with the club to launch the Whitecaps FC Ottawa Academy Centre – only the second of its kind in Ontario. “They have the best youth academy in North America, bar none,” OSU Club President Bill Michalopulos said to the gathering at Centurion Conference & Event Center, thanking the club’s parents, board of directors, staff, coaches and volunteers for the key roles they played in the success. Whitecaps President Bob Lenarduzzi also spoke via a video message at the banquet, while Canadian soccer legend Carl Valentine of the Whitecaps inspired the crowd with his own in-person speech. Originally from Manchester, England, Valentine began playing professional soccer in 1976 at 17 years old – the same age as the oldest athletes being recognized at OSU’s banquet. In 1979 as a rookie in the North American Soccer League, he won a league championship with Vancouver. In 1983, he became a Canadian citizen and played for Canada’s national Canadian soccer legend Carl team from 1985-1993, including Valentine of the Vancouver our country’s last World Cup Whitecaps FC spoke at OSU’s September competitive banquet. appearance in 1986.

“If you don’t believe in your dreams, then it’s not going to happen,” Valentine counselled the young talents, the Whitecaps ambassador encouraging them to strive to become the next Canadian soccer greats. “(The Whitecaps) ownership group is committed to becoming the best club in Major League Soccer, but that’s not going to happen without great partnerships,” he added. “That’s why partnerships like we have with your club are important.”

SUSTAINED SUCCESS FOR OSU AT NEXT LEVEL A toast was made to the OSU’s Jaeden Mercure, who joined the Whitecaps FC Residency Program this season – the latest in an ever-growing OSU pipeline to move on to the Major League Soccer franchise. More than 20 OSU players will graduate to NCAA, Canadian university or college level competition next year as well, bringing the lifetime total past 200 since the club’s inception in 2003. OSU product Kris Twardek of Millwall FC recently received his first call to Canada’s senior men’s national team. He donned the maple leaf against El Salvador in an International Friendly match in October. Twelve-year-old Hadi Assaad also represented the OSU in the redand-white recently, playing for Canada internationally at the U12 level in September’s Danone Nations Cup. And Isabella Hanisch continued to make her mark as a member of the Canadian women’s national team’s EXCEL program. “Our players are the best in Ottawa and some of the best in Ontario,” Michalopulos highlighted. “Once again, we had a great year. It’s success and continuing improvement that drives OSU. Every year, we try to surpass ourselves.”




Mailing address: 345 Meadowbreeze Dr. Kanata, Ont. K2M 0K3 Website: SportsOttawa.com Contact: Editor: Charlie Pinkerton 613-929-3681 Editor@SportsOttawa.com

YMCA-YWCA OF THE NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION STARS OF THE MONTH Team of the Month: Cumberland United Cobras Under-13 Girls’ Soccer Team

Athlete of the Month: Caden Griffin

OTTAWA COMMUNITY SPORT MEDIA TEAM Board of Directors Josh Bell Anne Duggan John Haime Josh Karanja Dan Plouffe (Executive Director) Mohamed Sofa The Ottawa Sportspage is a not-for-profit publication devoted to shining a spotlight on local amateur sport. Under the direction of the Ottawa Community Sport Media Team, our group also runs the CAMPS Project alongside the Ottawa Community Housing Foundation’s recLINK program. The Connecting Athletes of All Means to Paths in Sport Project links OCH children & youth to free opportunities with our partner sports groups, which receive heavily discounted advertising in exchange for offering the positions in their programs at no cost to our participants. CAMPS PROJECT PARTNERS Beaver Boxing Club Bytown Storm Triathlon Club Capital City Dance Capital Kids Tennis Capital Wave Water Polo Club Carleton Jr. Ravens Cumberland United Soccer Club ÉSP/Dome Louis-Riel FC Capital United Soccer Club Geng Table Tennis Academy Gloucester Griffins Lacrosse Kanata GymnoSphere Kanata Rhythmic Gymnastics Club KV Dance Studio Nepean Hotspurs Soccer Club Nepean Nighthawks Field Hockey Olympia Gymnastics Ottawa Gymnastics Centre Ottawa Lions Track & Field Club Ottawa National Diving Club Ottawa Rowing Club Ottawa South United Soccer Club Ottawa Table Tennis Club RA Centre Resolute Gymnastics Centre Rideau Canoe Club Royal City Soccer Club St. Anthony’s Futuro Soccer Club Tennis For Life Ottawa Tumblers Gymnastics Centre YMCA-YWCA

photo: eddie michels

About: Caden Griffin was called to the mound for Baseball Canada in its Junior National Team Fall Instruction League. The 16-year-old Ottawa-Nepean Canadians product made his first appearance for Team Roster: Amy Cassidy, Vanessa Wynn, Paige Robert, Lea Francoeur, Flavie Dube, Riley Bonadie, Rachel the Junior National Team on Oct. 2 against Vermaire, Devon Vermaire, Alexis Virgo, Jessica Boyle, Paige Lachambre, Yasmine Lange, Elizabeth Vroom, a group of professional prospects from Leanne Turcotte & Peyton Fairchild, and Coaches Duane Bonadie, Stan Rozboud & Pat Boyle. the Atlanta Braves in Orlando. The leftAbout: The Cumberland Cobras 2004-born girls’ soccer team earned the first Ontario Cup title in their club’s handed pitcher is no stranger to the big history in September thanks to a 3-1 victory over Oshawa. The championship game was the first time the stage. In 2013, he was part of the East NeCobras were scored on in their 5 matches in the provincial knockout competition. Cumberland previously pean Eagles’ national-champion team that trounced Belleville, Mississauga and Bolton 5-0 and then downed Woodbridge 2-0 to advance to the final. The went on to represent Canada at the LitOntario Cup triumph was sandwiched between another pair of championships. Two days earlier, they capped tle League World Series in Williamsport, their undefeated 13-0-3 season playing against older opponents in the East Region Soccer League’s U14 girls’ PA. Caden is a Grade 11 student at John division. Two days later, the team won the East Region Cup U14 girls’ competition for the triple crown. McCrae Secondary School. E-mail editor@sportsottawa.com to nominate your Stars! Courtesy of the YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region, the selected Stars of the Month will receive free passes to the Y.

Meet the Ottawa Sportspage’s new editor, Charlie Pinkerton The Ottawa Sportspage is thrilled to welcome a rising star in the sports media world as the new editor of our not-for-profit local amateur sport publication. Carleton University journalism grad Charlie Pinkerton joins the Sportspage after gaining work experience with several Postmedia newspapers – the Sault Star, the London Free Press and his hometown Kingston Whig-Standard – as well as U Sports and OUA.tv. Locally, he’s volunteered for a number of organizations, including Rogers TV, the Ottawa Sports Awards and, of course, the Sportspage. “It’s been an absolute pleasure to collaborate with Charlie in recent years, and I’ve been so impressed by his skills as a journalist, his abilities to organize and execute projects, and perhaps most of all, his dedication to our local sports community,” says outgoing Sportspage editor Dan Plouffe, currently enjoying time with his young family while on parental leave. “I know anyone who’s worked with Charlie comes away with that same impression. I’m very excited about what his addition will mean for our organization, as well as the Ottawa amateur sports scene.” Charlie grew up playing every sport under the sun, which fueled his appreciation for what sport has to offer beyond the trophies and triumphs. It also helped build his interest in pursuing a career

that involves sports. “Since before I can remember, sports have been a mainstay in my life,” notes Charlie, who can often be found shooting hoops at many gyms downtown. “I believe sport should be a part of everyone’s life, whether that’s at a basic, recreational level, or the highest level of international competition. “I know that in my life, participation and involvement in sports and competition were integral to my personal development. The traits I developed and the lessons I learned that tested my

perseverance, teamwork and hard work, couldn’t be found anywhere else.” It’s that type of philosophy that Charlie brings to storytelling – to go beyond the wins and losses to tell athletes’ life stories through sport. He says he’s been exceptionally impressed with the people he’s met from the local sports community. “Since I first became involved with the Ottawa Sportspage as well as the Ottawa Sports Awards, I’ve realized how many truly top-notch athletes we have in this city, and the amount of high-level competition there is here,” Charlie adds. “And I’ve also experienced as a young journalist how much gets lost in today’s media landscape. For how much is available at our fingertips online, so much goes unreported on and unrecognized. “The attention we provide is deserved, if not necessary.” Charlie says a big attraction to the Sportspage was indeed the opportunity to provide a spotlight for local high school, university, community club and elite amateur sport that seldom receive attention from other media outlets. “I’m really excited for the opportunity to serve as editor,” Charlie underlines. “I just hope that I’ll make the local sports community proud and be able to continue to share their great stories.” Charlie Pinkerton can be reached at 613-929-3681 & editor@sportsottawa.com .



Ottawa Sport Council’s Fall Sport Summit to tackle grants By Dan Plouffe The Ottawa Sport Council will bring together the local sports community for its Fall Sport Summit the evening of Nov. 29 at Ben Franklin Place, set to cover a topic that’s become a crucial tool for community sports organizations’ advancement: creating successful grant applications. “Most sport organizations seem to be able to basically make ends meet with their registration fees,” explains Ottawa Sport Council executive director Marci Morris, noting they can generally cover their costs for equipment, facility rental, etc. “But there is absolutely no money to do anything else. “So to do new initiatives or to expand their initiatives, they need extra money coming in, because they can’t continue to raise membership fees. From that perspective, grants are critical.” Thus, formulating proposals and applying for grants are “essential” skills for sports groups to have within their leadership team, Morris signals. “The reality is, with 73% of community sport organizations run (exclusively) by volunteers, a lot of those people have no experience in writing a grant,

and they don’t know what’s required, they’ve never gone through the process of doing it,” adds the member of Team Ontario’s 2017 Canada Summer Games mission staff. “There’s a huge abyss of knowledge out there of what makes a good grant.” On top of spreading knowledge of what kind of grants may be available to sports groups, the Summit will bring in speakers from local and provincial granting agencies to provide their expertise on the subject. “The thought of this particular Summit is to say from a funder’s perspective: what are they looking for?” Morris details. “‘What makes a good grant? Why would I give you money? Why wouldn’t I give you money? What’s my compelling reason?’” The Summit won’t get into the specific nuts and bolts on how to write a grant during its evening event, but the Council does plan to offer further training opportunities, such as a future webinar.


The Ottawa Titans Water Polo Club was 1 of 2 recipients of Ottawa Sport Council grants to support programming for underserviced populations.

2015 file photo

Foundation received many applications for its own grants did reinforce the need for workshops on the topic, Morris indicates, though they also received many very strong applications. The focus of the grants was to aid community sport organizations in establishing programs for underserviced populations. “I’m always blown away by the generosity of community sport organiza-

with the True Sport Foundation. The Titans will work alongside Ausome Ottawa to introduce water polo to youth with autism. “They’ll run a special program for them that gives them the ability to try a sport that they probably wouldn’t necessarily get to try,” Morris outlines. “The way the Titans are doing it, and how they’ve got their whole community to buy into it, is amazing.” The LACA soccer club, meanwhile, already offers free registrations to those in need, but they found that many of those potential participants couldn’t get to their programs from different corners of the city. “That child may get left behind simply because they have no way to get there,” underlines Morris, noting the grant will support the creation of a transportation network made up of 3 pods in different areas where one parent will bring many kids to their soccer sessions. “It’s very creative,” Morris adds. “It’s removing a real barrier.” Registration for the Sport Summit is free for participants, who are encouraged to make a donation to the Foundation’s endowment fund.

tions to look out for those who might not be their primary demographic,” Morris highlights. “There were a lot of really wonderful ideas, which made me feel so good about our community.” The Council selected programs from the Ottawa Titans Water Polo Club and the Latin American Community Association Soccer Club to receive their $1,500 grants in conjunction


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Grants Demystified: How to Create a Winning Application Sport provides a range of benefits to participants, but it can be costly. Most not-for-profits depend on grants to deliver their services to the community, and they must secure this type of funding reliably and consistently. That means it’s crucial that those responsible for developing grant applications have a comprehensive understanding of how to set their projects apart from the pack.

2017 65TH ANNUAL Submit a nomination for a deserving athlete, team, coach or sport volunteer through ottawasportsawards.ca until December 15. (Lifetime achievement awards deadline: November 15.)

Our Fall Sport Summit will give attendees the chance to learn from grant providers about how to create a winning application. You’ll learn from informed decision makers about:

• How to ensure your grant application stands out • Seven attributes of highly effective grants • The details that compel a grant provider to say yes

SAVE THE DATE! January 31, 2018 6 – 9:30 p.m.

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 29TH, 6 PM - 9:30 PM BEN FRANKLIN PLACE (101 CENTREPOINTE DR.) Have your organization be a part of the learning and the dialogue at this free event.

Register at: sportottawa.ca

Algonquin College /ottawasportsawards @OttSportsAwards @ottawasportsawards



2016 Male Athlete of the Year

The Ottawa Sport Council thanks the Ontario Government for its generous support through the Ontario Sport and Recreation Communities Fund, of this Sport Summit, along with the City of Ottawa.

2016 Female Athlete of the Year




Ottawa divers strike gold at Jr. Pan Am Championships

BYTOWN STORM BULLETIN Bytown Strong Triathlon Team – Age Group Program Within the Bytown Storm Family, our Age Group Program is called the Bytown Strong Triathlon Team. This program is meant for adult athletes who need to balance pressure from work, family and their own personal goals. In the this program, many of our athletes have varied goals:  from their first race to their 50th, short course and long. In order respect adult athletes’ goals and commitments, we purposefully strive to create an environment that is challenging yet supportive and positive.

Bytown Strong Triathlon Team Coach Adam Smart.


photo provided

By Charlie Pinkerton Kate Miller would have been happy with just competing at the Pan American Junior Diving Championships. But after breaking her toe before the competition, she’d never imagine she wouldn’t only reach the podium twice, but win a gold medal and be the first to hear O Canada played in her honour. “I was just hoping not to come last,” the 12-year-old diver from the Nepean Ottawa Diving Club said with a laugh. In the hotel she was staying in in Victoria, B.C., where the competition was held, she fell down a flight of stairs and broke her toe before she could even attempt one dive in the championships held Sept. 28 – Oct. 1. “She was really limping and was clearly hurt but we didn’t know if it was broken or not,” Fernando Henderson, head coach of the Nepean Ottawa Diving Club said about Miller’s injury. “She dove excellent. She didn’t really show any sign of

pain.” It wasn’t until after the competition that she found out about the break, so she dove all weekend with a taped foot and avoided walking on it during her downtime. “There was so much adrenaline that I just completely forgot about the pain,” Miller said about how it felt during the competition. She persevered and won a gold in the platform event in the girls’ 12-13 age group, edging fellow Canadian Tatiana Conn from Calgary by less than a point. Miller was the first Canadian competitor to win first place at the competition. Henderson thinks she inspired the other Canadians participating with her performance. She medaled again later in the competition, finishing in second place in the 1m for her age group, again finishing a spot ahead of Conn. Henderson said he was most impressed by the young diver’s ability to ignore the scores of her competitors and

focus on her own dives. “When I finish my dive, I usually ignore whatever else is going on. I don’t think about the scores by putting headphones in or something like that so I can’t hear the other scores,” Miller added about why she thinks she was successful at the Pan American Junior Diving Championships. Nepean Ottawa Diving Club product Henry McKay also captured a pair of medals at the event. It was his fourth time competing at the Pan Am Junior Championships. In the 3m synchro event, McKay took gold with his partner Victor Povzner (Markham). The 17-year-old also won bronze in the platform event of the competition’s oldest age group. He’s reached the podium each time he’s participated. McKay now trains at the Toronto Diving Academy. 2016 Ottawa Sports Awards diver of the year Kathryn Grant from the Ottawa National Diving Club also competed at the championships. The 13-year-old placed 7th in the 3m finals.


Our program is meant to stay true to each athlete’s goals in challenging and supportive way. We apply a structured and periodized program that mixes low intensity periods and high intensity sessions to build a strong and healthy athlete. Our ideal athlete is goal-oriented, motivated, dedicated, open mined and easy going.  FALL-WINTER: • Aerobic Base, Technical & Low-Intensity Focus • 2 Swims • 1 Indoor Cycle • 1 Social Run SPRING-SUMMER: • High-Intensity, Technical & Race Effort Focus • 2 Pool Swims • 1 Track Run

THE COACH Coach Adam Smart has competed and coached for many years in Ottawa and has a reputation for running one of Ottawa’s best age group triathlon programs.  Adam’s knowledge and easy-going personality has provided a platform that has allowed the athletes to produce many personal bests this year. Adam plans to add to the age group program as the program grows naturally with the intention of bringing more options for athletes in coming years.  Through mentorship and training, Adam has developed a program that utilizes the training concepts and approach used by Provincial and National Team Coaches and integrated into a comprehensive Age Group program in Ottawa.

2017 - 2018 PROGRAMMING SWIM PROGRAM The STRONG swim program runs from November 2017 to March 2018. Each session is designed around a specific goal and is personalized to the swimmer’s needs. 

Swimming fast means you need to swim well. All Bytown programs are formulated around improving your body position in the water, by reducing drag and increasing propulsion through the water. DATES: Nov. 2, 2017 to Mar. 31, 2018 (20 weeks) Tuesday: 6:00 - 7:15am - Nepean Sportsplex Thursday: 6:00 - 7:15am - Nepean Sportsplex BIKE PROGRAM There are plenty of off-season bike workout programs, so why is our so different?  We GUARANTEE you will be able to see and quantify your progress.  The BYTOWN STRONG winter cycling program has created a unique partnership with The PEAK Centre for Human Performance.  Coach Adam and the experts at PEAK have designed a program that includes: • beginning and end power profile assessment • 2 x Lactic and VO2 max assessments performed  by PEAK Centre (value of $260) • power files are provided for each session • Maximum 8 spots available DATES: Nov. 1, 2017 to Mar. 31, 2018 (20 weeks) Wednesday:  7:00 - 8:15pm - PEAK Centre Ottawa * best efforts will be made to get your individual testing sessions scheduled before the first session. FALL SOCIAL RUN Structured training is important. We know that and we respect that! The flip side is also true: We have all heard the saying “Work Hard, Play Hard”. Join Adam and the crew every Saturday for a quick and leisurely 60-minute out and back starting from the Nepean Sportsplex. Then it’s “Coffee Time”.  This run is open to all, no cost! DATES: Nov. 4, 2017 to Mar. 31, 2018 (20 weeks) Saturday:  9:00am - Nepean Sportsplex (at the rear of the building)

bytown strong triathlon team

better training. better performance. 613-836-9149 | www.olympiagymnastics.ca


Profile for Dan Plouffe

Ottawa Sportspage  

The October/November 2017 edition of the Ottawa Sportspage newspaper.

Ottawa Sportspage  

The October/November 2017 edition of the Ottawa Sportspage newspaper.