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2 | June 2011


June 2011 | Vol. 1 | Iss. 3

OUT IN FRONT Sarnia Pacer Conner Smith had to have quick hands to get this shot off with a London defender closing in.


06 Keeping on the Course Health tips to keep your game in the game.

< 10 Sarnia to Buffalo

Jimmy Purves makes the leap to the professional ranks

12 A Bright Future

Pacers looking forward to things to come

22 One Final Look

A look at the moments that made the LSSAA season

28 The New Class for 2011 Hall of Fame Inductees

14 Know Your

Sarnia Braves June 2011 |



Andrew Brethauer Editor Pat Brethauer Publisher

Sturgeon: Taking the ‘re’ out of rebuilding Sarnia’s football program is reaching new highs and producing quality football talent in all age groups.


n this issue you’ll read about two teams who are currently trying to rebuild their organizations. The Sarnia Pacers (page 12) and the Sarnia Sting (page 30) each have their own set of issues they will be looking to solve heading into next season. But with all this talk of RE-building, how about an organization that is simply building. And doing it successfully mind you. Last year the Sarnia Sturgeon football club tripled in size, and now offers football in peewee, bantam and juniorvarsity. Last year the Sturgeon Bantam’s went all the way to the O.F.C Championship game at Laurier University in their first season, and this year each Sturgeon team looks to be making big impressions in their respected divisions, going an impressive 9-3 through the first

twelve games combined. With the ability for these players to move up and grow together in an organization that now offers three levels of football, Sarnia’s ability to put out quality football players has grown considerably high. And for junior-varsity members, it means an excellent way to keep in the football state of mind through the summer, and continue on right into the high school football season. The Sturgeon have simply found a way to ensure a healthy football program in Sarnia. By building from the ground up, players will stay with their team through the three levels of football, and grow. Many other cities in the O.F.C. have the ability to grow from within their own ranks, and now Sarnia can be added to that list. Successfully as well.

Follow Andrew on twitter @sarniasports

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Being ready for the course will not only improve your game, but keep you out on the fairways longer. The weather has finally improved and it is time to hit the course. Recreational golfers find themselves on the golf course hoping to start where they ended off last season. However, over the course of a season, golf scores and games improve with golfers forming good habits and routines, correcting their swing and form. Avoiding injuries is key to staying on the course and enjoying the game. Both recreational and professional golfers suffer from common golf injuries. Studies have shown that 50% of tournament professionals have had to stop playing due to serious injuries. An Australian study revealed that most golf injuries can be categorized as either traumatic or overuse in nature. Traumatic injuries are most common by the amateur golfers as a result of a faulty golf swing. The professional golfers suffer from more overuse type injuries. They typically correct their swing problems and drive issues, but practice repetitively on various facets of short and long games and their putting. The most common injuries are lower back, neck, shoulder, wrist and hands,

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knee, foot, ankles, and sunburns. It can be seen that the whole body is affected. All levels of golfers can suffer a golf injury due to the complexity, the speed and explosiveness of the swing and the mental toughness required to excel at this sport. Many injuries that golfers suffer can be prevented. A good training program for golfers of all levels would include the following components: - Proper posture - Balance/Agility training - Proper joint movement - Muscular Stability and Co-ordination - Muscle flexibility - Muscle Strength Most golf swing injuries that occur typically result from the following: - Over use and over practice - Poor swing techniques - High torque forces on spine - Over swinging Incorrect grip Some information on a few of the common golf injuries: Golfers Elbow: is known as medial epicondylitis results in inflammation, tenderness or pain on the inner side of the elbow. Lateral epicondylitis (Tennis Elbow) has similar symptoms and also affects many golfers. Both are caused by repetitive strain of the muscles and tendons of the elbow or the faulty grip mechanics of the golf clubs. Other common symptoms are: stiffness at the elbows, pain and weakness in the hands. Things that will help reduce the signs and symptoms are rest- stop playing until the pain subsides, icing the elbow 7-10 min three times per day, alter your swing to alleviate stress on the elbow. Seek care from a Chiropractor and use of over the counter pain relievers. Shoulder Injuries, the most common problem is due to rotator cuff injuries. The explosiveness of the golf swing

causes chronic micro trauma to the stabilizing shoulder muscles. The muscle and tendon can suffer tears resulting in scar tissue formation which affects the pain free movement of the shoulder. Common Causes: Rotator cuff tendonitis (inflammation of the tendon). Frozen Shoulder (adhesions within the shoulder capsule) Bursitis (inflammation of the bursa sacs in the shoulder). Arthritis (swelling and stiffness of shoulder). Most of the symptoms results in painful and restricted shoulder range of motion and referred pain down the arm to the elbow. Common interventions to help would include: - Rest of the shoulder - Icing the shoulder/neck region 15-20 min 3X/day - Seek care from a Chiropractor for ultrasound or electrotherapy, acupuncture or rehab(including a stretching and strengthening routine) Stretching the Shoulder: Pectoralis stretch: stand in a door way with two hands at shoulder height, put one leg through the doorway and bend your front knee while maintain a straight spine. You can do this stretch for three reps of 10 seconds each. Shoulder Retraction: Stand upright and elevate your shoulders, from this

position you will squeeze your shoulder blades together and hold for three reps of 10 seconds. Wall Angels: Stand up straight with your back against the wall, your elbows will start at 90 degrees and you need to maintain contact with the wall as you move your shoulders up and touch your finger tips above your head and then bring them down as low as you can. Many golfers suffer a multitude of common golf injuries that can be corrected by proper swing mechanics, better posture and balance, strength training, flexibility, endurance and overall conditioning. One of the easiest injuries to prevent is sunburns. Each golfer should use a sun block lotion prior to hitting the links. Consider taking a few lessons from a golf professional and seek the care of a Chiropractor if you suffer an injury. After all nothing gets between a golfer and the game.

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Path to the Pro’s Jimmy Purves doesn’t get a break from lacrosse much these days, as the Sarnia native makes stops in Sarnia, Six Nations and Buffalo.


o go from Junior B to the professional ranks in any sport is commonly unheard of. But for Sarnia’s Jimmy Purves, the leap from the Sarnia Clearwater Arena and the Ontario Jr. B Lacrosse league to Buffalo’s HSBC Arena and the National Lacrosse League took just a couple of months. A leap that also included a quick stop in Six Nations for a Junior A Ontario Championship title run with the Six Nations Arrows. The Sarnia Jr. B Pacers ended their 2010 season on June 20th with a 10-8 loss to Oakville. Purves chipped in a goal and an assist in the loss that saw the Pacers lose their 14th of the season. One day later, Purves would score the eventually game winning goal in a 15-9 victory over the Burlington Chiefs with the Six Nations Arrows of the Junior A Lacrosse League.

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He would suit up in seven regular season games for the Arrows, scoring four goals and nine assists, while also appearing in 13 playoff games, scoring seven goals and 11 assists. “Once you get down and play in the junior A league, especially in Six Nations where they take the game so seriously, [the game] is a lot more serious,” says Purves. “Everyone is really trying to win there, you play a lot more lacrosse, you’re a lot more dedicated to the game.” The Arrows season ended in August after being swept in the final series of the Junior A Championships against the Orangeville Northmen. Purves would return home, and on September 8th, 2010, in front of a laptop with his sister beside him, he watched the National Lacrosse League draft. Not expecting to be picked at all, Purves was selected in the 5th round, 47th overall by the Buffalo Bandits. “It was a surprise I was drafted,” said Purves. “I figured I was good enough to play Junior A, and I finally got my chance and luckily I showed I was good enough to go up to the big times.” Placed on the practice roster, Purves played only one game for the Bandits, a home game against the Minnesota Swarm at the HSBC Arena in front of 15,001 fans.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;The atmosphere for one of these games is unbelievable. They love the game just as much as we do. It was probably the best experience to run out to that many screaming fans.â&#x20AC;? For the rest of the season, he practiced with the team and would watch all home games from the press box. With the NLL season wrapping up in the middle of May, Purves had the opportunity to return home and play a few games with the Pacers before reporting back to Six Nations to play in the Junior A league. In four games with the Pacers, Purves had 13 goals and nine assists for 22 points, and was a big part of the Pacers early 3-2 record to start the season. Purves, who is in his final year of junior lacrosse and had played for the Pacers for the last four seasons wanted to get some games in with his local team and friends before moving back to Six Nations to be part of a contending team for the junior A championship. And now with his time in Sarnia completed, with this year being the last year Purves is eligible to play in the junior ranks, his sole focus will be on making the Bandits final roster for next season,

108 Number of points Purves scored as part of the Sarnia Pacers in 41 games between 2009-2011, including 55 goals and 53 assists. Purves lead the Pacers in scoring for 2010, scoring 24 goals and 29 assists in 20 games for 53 points. June 2011 |


A Bright Future Ahead

Though they missed the playoffs again, seven victories and a few close games give reason to believe that things are finally turning around for the orange and black.


t may have seemed like just another year for the Sarnia Pacers in the Ontario Junior B Lacrosse league, winning seven of 20 games, and missing the playoffs yet again. But this year’s season marks what many hope to be the turning point for a young squad with lot’s to look forward to. “This year when we played games 18 and 19 it actually had meaning to it,” said Pacers General Manager Ken Barrett. “In

the past we were eliminated by games 14 or 15 so obviously we are making strides. We just have to put it all together for the full 20 games.” At the start of the season Sarnia held the division lead with a 3-1 record. But that was followed by an eight game slide that lasted most of May and ended with a victory on June 1st. But as Barrett notes, with the way the divisions line up, Sarnia was right in the hunt for the two playoff spots

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that generally go to the top two in each division. “If you look at our record within our division we were 5-7. That matches right up with both Wallaceburg and London (who both made playoffs). I felt we had a much better team than both Wallaceburg and London and we matched up well with Windsor.” Sarnia had a 3-1 record against London and a 2-2 record against Wallaceburg. Each of those three losses were by two goals or less, and were leads Sarnia held late into the game, including an 8-7 loss to Wallaceburg in overtime. The three games against Windsor, Sarnia allowed 52 goals and scored only 18. “For whatever reason Windsor seems to get in our heads and we just never show up to play.” But for a young team, the chance to be in the hunt may be exactly what was needed to motivate the team going forward. “We need to become more of a disciplined team and we need everyone to show up and play 100% game in and game out. I think a few of our guys still need to figure out what the meaning of hard work is and what kind of sacrifice it takes to win.” The Pacers do have a lot to look forward to moving into next season. Rookie Kevin Conroy lead the Pacers in goals with 33, and was second on the

team in points with 67, one point behind second year player Dan Charlton, who tallied 30 goals and 38 assists. Both also played all 20 games for the Pacers this season. With two young talents leading the way, the future for Sarnia looks bright. But also for the other core of rookies who were able to find floor time during the middle of the season due to injuries. “Obviously the season didn’t finish the way I wanted as playoffs were the goal,” said Barrett. “But we look as if we are finally pointed in the right direction now with the core of our team being 2nd and 3rd year players. We will pretty well have the same team back competing next season.” But if the playoffs are to be in the cards for Sarnia in the future, they surely will need more point production, as 20 points separates Charlton from third place TJ Mara (48 points), and only three other Pacers scored double digits in goals, including Mara with 13, Aaron Schieman with 12 and former Pacer Jimmy Purves with 13, despite only playing four games with his hometown club. The Pacers had a goal differential of 79, as five times this season the Pacers allowed 16 goals or more. “When we did we won and we won easily, when we didn’t we lost and we lost badly,” said Barrett. “The coaches can only do so much, it’s time for the players to step up and take accountability for the effort that is given on the

floor.” But the future does look bright, and with lacrosse building momentum in Sarnia, Barrett believes that a winning Pacers team can be just around the corner. “I think there is light at the end of the tunnel now and it isn’t a train steaming toward us for once. Lacrosse is growing within the community and there is a bright future for Jr. Lacrosse here in Sarnia.” June 2011 |


Getting to Know

Sarnia Braves AAA Men’s Team with James Grant and Nick Baljeu SARNIASPORTS: What has been the reason for the team’s early success? JAMES GRANT: The team’s early success has had a lot to do with the talent we’ve added and the level of pre-season work we did as a squad. Baseball is a lot about gelling as a club. We started the process of building this team in the gym on January 3rd. We are really six months in and that helps when you add fifteen new players to a roster. SARNIASPORTS: How has the calibre of baseball changed going from AA to AAA? JG: We posted a win over the defending Ontario AA champions earlier this season and as always it was a great level of ball. But, in our run ins with AAA competition, you see a different edge to the game. Catchers block more pitches. Infielders make the hard plays look easy. Pitching is a little bit better. We are a new team at this level, but we are prepared with a solid team of gritty players. SARNIASPORTS: Who has made a big impact on the team that people may not know about? JG: Basically, we rebuilt the entire team from our first season in 2010. With the pitchers, Jeff Jones has been an incredible addition to the staff. He was drafted by the San Diego Padres and has added professional expertise. We already had Joel Ainsworth, who was drafted by the LA Dodgers, so you couldn’t ask for much better in terms of experience. We also beefed up the infield with Nick Baljeu (2B), Wade Babula (SS) and Russ Muhlig (3B) who all have college experience.

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SARNIASPORTS: What has been the best quality in your game this year? JG: The best quality has definetely been our ability to not give up. Growing up playing ball for Jim Bigras and Stan Newman in Sarnia, you saw a lot of things and played a certain way. It really isn’t over ‘til its over on the ball diamond and we have found a way to battle hard each and every day. The losses will be there this year, but we aren’t going to give in to anyone on any occasion and that’s special. SARNIASPORTS: What has been the best game the Braves have played? JG: Our best game to this point was our 3-2 win over Chatham in extra innings. They are the only senior club in Kent County whereas we share Lambton with six other clubs. They have a great team that pushed us to the edge. We were down to our last out in both regulation and extras innings and found a way to score to win. Games like that bring a team together.

SARNIASPORTS: What is it like to play AAA in your hometown? Nick Baljeu: I love it because I have always wanted to play the highest level of ball. I think every Sarnia team going AAA is awesome because Sarnia is a great home center, and there are a lot of talented ball players in the Sarnia area. SARNIASPORTS: Having a strong AAA baseball club in Sarnia can only help grow the sport locally. Do you see the future as being bright now that you have created a solid foundation? NB:I definitely see the future being bright for Sarnia baseball. The foundation it set, and now it is up to the coaches, players, parents and the local fans to put up the building blocks and make Sarnia Baseball a strong program. I have been apart of some poor baseball programs and I have been apart of great baseball programs. It is a building process that may take a little bit of time, but I see a bright future for Sarnia Baseball.

SARNIASPORTS: Who do you look up to as a baseball player? NB:I look up to Roy Halladay. He is by far my favorite player. I have watched him pitch since he came up with the Blue Jays in 97’. He is a work horse and a serious competitor. He gives everything he has out on the mound and doesn’t settle for anything less. I have tried to emulate him since I was a kid and it has made me a better ball player. I expect a lot out of myself just like Roy Halladay. I give 110% all the time and will do anything to better my team. I take a lot of pride in how I play the game, and I also take a lot of pride on having my teammates and coaches being able to count on me.

SARNIASPORTS: You won the OUA Championship with Brock. What was that like? NB: That was an incredible experience. Prior to Brock, I spent 2 years in the States playing at a Division 2 Junior College where we were the worst team in the league both years. I had a lot of ups and downs there, but I took a lot out of that experience. When I came to Brock I didn’t know what to expect. It was a well run program and Brock had a tradition of winning, but the last couple of years before I got there, were disappointing seasons for Brock. It was a totally different atmosphere and a great group of guys and coaches. I never really knew what winning felt like so when we won OUA I was more than excited to say the least. We had a heartbreaking loss in the finals at Nationals, but overall it was an amazing experience. I got a taste of what winning felt like and it really created a competitive fire in me. June 2011 |


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those little moments by andrew brethauer


l Duffy stands at centre ice with the Lambton Cup in hand. He faces the St. Clair Colt boy’s hockey team and without a microphone, yells out to the team. “Alright boys….twenty-four years ago,” is all that can be made out. The rest is drowned out by the fans lining the boards of Sarnia Arena, as Duffy lifts the Cup into the air and Colt Captain Dan Lumley skates to centre to accept it, immediately swamped by his teammates, as St. Clair hoists the trophy for the first time since 1986. It will never be known exactly what Duffy said, but in that small moment, the words were lost to a chorus of cheers and a break in history. In the gymnasiums and fields of Sarnia’s high schools there were plenty of other moments that may never be remembered, but they each have a story. Some define a game, while others define a player. And while next season when the LSSAA has its first kick off or puck drop these moments will be forgotten, we will at least try and remember them.

< Photo by Allan Kirkland of BEMA Photography June 2011 |


SILENCING YOUR CRITICS The Northern Vikings fans had been riding Joe Rocca all game, as the star forward for the St. Christopher Cyclones senior basketball team lead the way in points as the final minutes ticked away on the clock, and St. Chris held on to a one point lead in the final quarter. When the ball touched his hands, Viking faithful would stand and chant, trying to ice the shooter as he stood at the free throw line for three shots. “Overrated!” they chanted, as Rocca proceeded to knock down all three of his free throws and turn back towards his own basket to play defence, making it a two score game for the Cyclones.

With the Vikings in foul trouble and the willingness of Rocca to get the ball in his hands, it meant the rest of the quarter would find Rocca at the free throw line, and the fans on his back. “Overrated!” Rocca would hit two more free throws; turn back and like each time before he gave no response to his detractors, but rather returned to his post, ready for the next wave of Vikings attack. As Northern’s play turned to desperation, every turnover would have to be followed by a foul to return a Cyclone to the free throw line, hoping that a miss would get the ball back into their hands without eating up the clock.

After hitting five of his last five free throws, and once again standing at the line looking to shoot two more, the fans would again try to distract the shooter who was putting in a fourth quarter performance that would define the world clutch. Rocca would go on to hit eight free throws in the final quarter, putting the Cyclones up a comfortable 55-46. Like every time before after ball sailed the netting, Rocca would turn back around and run down the court. But with the Cyclones on the verge on capture the LSSAA championship, Rocca slightly turned to his critics and smiled. They

sat back down in their seats as the time expired.

20 | June 2011

DIGGING DEEP ONCE MORE Nothing adds tension to any sport then extra time, and the will of an athlete to pick them selves back up after regulation time had expired and need to find that extra strength to put their team over the time. Penalty kicks were needed to decide the final of the junior boys soccer championship game, after St. Christopher and North Lambton played ninety minutes of scoreless soccer, only for the Cyclones to capture the title with a 4-3 shootout victory.

An entire school season away, St. Clair needed extra time in senior boys rugby, as the Colts found themselves down 10-3 in the lat stages of the second half, only for Denver Spearman, who had played a boys soccer semifinal match prior to the game, to pick up a ball on the goal line and score a try, sending the game into two extra five minute half’s. Both teams stood off in the first half, but in the second half of extra time, Jimmy Troung would spot open field, running with his eyes on the goal line and put the ball down for a winning score. But overtime tales always have a victor and a victim. And in a scoreless

game, with championship implications on the line, a single fault can leave an ever lasting impression. With Northern and St. Christopher’s locked in a scoreless draw in the semifinals of boys hockey, overtime was needed. But despite it being quick, it surely wasn’t painless. Dylan Regan stepped in front of his goalie with the puck, but after losing an edge and the puck off his stick, Regan could only watch as Norhtern’s Elliot Pecora deked Cyclones goalie Pat Breenan, and slide the puck into an open cage. Regan sat on the ice as the Vikings poured around their goal scorer, ending what was a perfect season.

SINGLE HANDEDLY With 24 men on either side of the ball for each team during a game, it’s hard to not think someone will make a play and define their season. If you did not personally attend the 25-9 final of the senior boys football championships, it would have been easy to think that at least three touchdowns were scored by the championship Vikings. But in light of tough Cyclone defence, Northern kicker Brian Kaija defined what it means to play on every side of the ball, as the Northern kicker had single handedly won the Vikings the championship in the first half, kicking four field goals and putting

up 12 points. But two kicks in the second half would cap of an MVP performance of 18 of 25 Northern points. It’s a tough break for St. Christopher’s, whose defence managed to keep the Vikings to a single touchdown, yet with outreached arms and blitzes on the kicker, would still fall to the golden foot of Kaija. June 2011 |


Final Moments TOP:Emily Williams, Abbi Dobson and Makenna Harrison show off their Championship T-Shirts, as the SCITS Blue Bombers won the girls Two-Pitch tournament, winning the small south Sarnia schools only LSSAA championship of the season. MIDDLE: Alex McLean was a big part of the LCCVI Lancers 15-5 victory over SCITS in the boys baseball final. The starting pitcher struck out eight batters, while cashing in 5 RBI’s. He was also the final run, scoring on a wild pitch to have the game called in the 6th inning. BOTTOM: St. Clair’s girl’s rugby team deserves a lot of credit for a season where they only gave up a single try all season, going undefeated on route to an LSSAA championship. 22 | June 2011

OFSSA Moments TOP:Northern’s senior girls soccer team captured a Silver Medal at the OFSSA championships in Hamilton, losing 6-2 to Louis Reil in the finals.

MIDDLE: St. Christopher’s won gold at OFSSA in boy’s soccer, and it was in large part to great goaltending from Chris Kerwin. In all games between LSSAA and OFSSA, Kerwin allowed only three goals and recorded 12 shutouts, including six of those in the OFSSA tournament.

BOTTOM: On their home court, the St. Clair Colts senior girls basketball team caputed Silver Medal’s, despite not winning the LSSAA championship in which they lost to Northern. June 2011 |



E 6 Number of medal’s LSSAA teams won at the OFSSA championships. St. Christopher’s won two Gold in Midget girls Cross Country and Senior boy’s Soccer, a Silver in senior boy’s basketball, and a Bronze in girl’s hockey (pictured above). St. Clair won a Silver in senior girl’s basketball and Northern a Silver in senior girl’s soccer. In total 14 teams from LSSAA moved on to the Ontario finals.

24 | June 2011

ach of the seven school`s primarily in LSSAA were featured in at least one champonship game. St. Christopher`s and Northern were featured in 16 finals each, battling each other nine of those times, with the Vikings coming out the victors on five occassions. Of the twenty-five championships in LSSAA, only two of them were contested without the Vikings or Cyclones involvement. Senior girl`s volleyball featured St. Patricks defeating St. Clair, and boy`s baseball featured LCCVI defeating SCITS. All other championship games had Northern or St. Chris being the victor or the runner up. North Lambton was the only school not to win a championship this past year, but came runner up in junior boy`s soccer. St. Francois-Xavier also did not win a championship, but only competed in two sports in the winter season.



Northern won seven championship, the most of any school in 2010-11, four in the fall term alone.


SCITS won a single title, coming near the end of the school year in girl`s Two-Pitch.


St. Clair won five titles, sweeping senior rugby and boy`s volleyball, and capturing hockey for the first time in 24 years.

St. Christopherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s won six titles, three of which were in the junior ranks.



LCCVI won three titles, one being girl`s hockey which they have won five years in a row.


St. Patrick`s made three finals and won three championships, two in boy`s basketball. June 2011 |


Looking Back A passionate trainer and coach, Ken Houston brought his love of sports to youth and the pros. BY PAT BRETHAUER


en Houston was a Navy war veteran who served in the WWII. In his later years you could find him in the skate sharpening room at Micor Sports where he sharpened hundreds of skates. I too worked at Micor and during those years I had the privilege of sitting down and chatting with Ken about his travels during the war and his sports career. Ken was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1991 under the Professional Category. Ken was born in Fort William, Ontario on July 15, 1923. He had been involved in sports as a coach and trainer for over 30 years. and started in Sarnia in 1960 where he was involved in minor sports such as baseball, hockey and lacrosse. He had been a trainer for numerous local teams from S.M.A.A. ranks to Senior A Hockey, where he was the trainer for the Petrolia Squires Allan Cup Winners in 1980/1981 season. His professional career started around 1968 when he was a hockey trainer for Des Moines in the I.H.L. 1969 – 1975. He was with the Port

Huron Flags of the International Hockey League where they won the Turner Cup twice. But besides hockey, Baseball was his passion. He was involved in Pro Baseball for 20 years. From 1970 when he was with the Batavia Trojans in “A” baseball to the Houston Astros of the major league. During those 20 years he had also been with the Detroit Tigers baseball organization for 11 years, three years with Seattle and six years with Houston.

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2011 Sarnia Hall of Fame Inductees The Sarnia Lambton Sports Hall Board of Directors is please to announce the 2011 Inductee Recipients. The Induction dinner will be held at the Camlachie Community Centre on Saturday September 24, 2011. AMATEUR - For Outstanding Performance as an Amateur Athlete in their Sport


Born in Sarnia, Arnold played football for the University of Western Ontario, and was named to the OUAA All-Star Team and All Canadian University team in 1973, the first Sarnian to recieve such an hour. He would be drafted by the Ottawa Rough Riders in 1974.


Born in Warwick Village, Blunt won the O.A.S.A. Intermediate B Championship with the Alvinston Indians. He earned Pitcher of the Year in 1975 with 33 wins, and won the O.A.S.A. Intermediate C Championship in 1979 & 1981 in Hearst, On.

BUD MORRISON AWARD - Contribution to Youth Sports


Kohlmeier has been a teacher-coach for the past 30 years between St. Patrick’s (1980-96) and St. Christopher (1997-present). She has coached championship teams at multiple levels and had excelled herself in both high school and at the University level.

BUILDER - Contributions in the Establishment of a Sport

ED &WENDY SEGUIN – HURON LAKERS GIRLS BASKETBALL CLUB In 1988 Ed and Wendy started the Lakers organization, known then as the Irish until the name was changed to better reflect the communuty,. Membership grew to 350 members on 16 travel teams. June 2011 |


2011 Sarnia Hall of Fame Inductees PROFESSIONAL- For Outstanding Performance at the Professional Level


– HOCKEY Verbeek was selected 43rd overall by the New Jersey Devils in the 1982 NHL Entry Draft. He helped the Devils to their first playoff berth in the 1987–88 season, when he scored a club record 46 goals during the regular season. After the 1988–89 season, the Devils traded him to the Hartford Whalers. In his first season, he led the team in goal scoring and in his second he was named team MVP. In 1991, he made the All-Star team for the first time and in the following season, Verbeek was named the Whalers captain. After a short stint with the Rangers, he signed with the Dallas Stars as a free agent, where he won his first Stanley Cup in 1999. During the 1999–2000 season, he signed with the Detroit Red Wings. In Detroit, he passed the 1,000-point mark, scored his 500th goal, and moved into the top 25 in career goal scoring before returning to Dallas for his final NHL season in 2001–02.

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– SQUASH Born Sept 9, 1966 in Quebec, Gary moved with his family to Sarnia and attended Northern High School. After having being exposed to squash by his parents Lewis and Janet at the age of 12, Gary became part of a burgeoning junior squash movement in the area inundating courts at Pinsonneault’s and the Sarnia Riding Club for years to come. Gary garnered more titles than any other junior squash player in the history of Canadian squash. He would continue this trend into the professional ranks to become one of the most decorated professional squash players in the history of the game worldwide. In 1993, while attending Harvard University, Gary could lay claim to being the #1 hardball singles player, #2 hardball doubles player and #12 softball singles player in the World, a feat in combined rankings not achieved by any player in the history of any of the three disciplines.

EARL MACKENZIE AWARD - Involved in Sports at least 30 Years


– SQUASH, HOCKEY, FASTBALL, BOWLING, GOLF Capp started his squash carrer in 1968 and competed at the 2001, 2002 and 2003 Ontario Masters Provincial Championships were he earned 1st, 2nd and 3rd. He also competed at the Canadian Nationals were he earned 4th. Capp was also a CoFounder of the Point Edward Old Timers Hockey Club.

BUD HAVELING - Special Achievement Award


Gerry and Merilyn Benenati were both involved with local sports for over 20 years. Gerry coached Ladies Softball, and became a member of the Sarnia Broomball Referee Association and the Sarnia Umpires Association. He was elected Umpire in Chief and Assigner for Sarnia/Lambton. Gerry was involved with several organizations and committees: Inter-county baseball association for Southwestern Ontario, Can-Am Tournament, SMAA Umpire Committee, Sarnia Sting Booster club, Michigan Umpires Association and in the winter the Florida Umpire Association. Merilyn played ladies softball in 1979 and went on to coach the team along side Gerry. In the early 1980’s she was asked to be the team driver for the Jr. Pacer Lacrosse Team, and she also was on the board of directos for the Pacers. Merilyn was involved with the Canadian Senior Lacrosse Championship held in Sarnia in 1987. Merilyn also volunteered at the International Gold bat Tournament, and sat on the board for the Can-Am Tournament, SMAA, Sarnia Sting Booster Club.

TEAM AWARD - Group Award to Major Championship Team


1981 Ontario Intermediate “C” Champions in Elmvale The team was formed in 1962 and played for 25 years at the Camlachie Community Centre ball park.

Tickets are available by contacting any member of the board. Information can be found on or can be purchased at Micor Sports 49 Finch Drive. June 2011 |


Might Take A Little Longer What you see may not be what you get in a year’s time, as NHL might leave a crater in the Sarnia Sting’s front lines. BY ANDREW BRETHAUER


he Sarnia Sting might be hitting the right track after signing new head coach Jacques Beaulieu this spring, but Sting fans would be mindful this upcoming season to not expect miracles, and understand that winning hockey in Sarnia may take a little longer then expected. Take into consideration that three of Sarnia’s top six are going to be drafted between June 24th, 2011 and late June in 2012. And the possibility that all three could find themselves playing in the NHL ranks come October 2012 would mean Sarnia is going to need some new talent to replace what they have. Brett Ritchie is expected to be a 2nd or 3rd round pick in this years NHL draft in St. Paul, Minnesota, and though in most cases he will return to the Sting for next season, beyond that is up to his NHL club. Same is true next season for the likes of Nail Yakupov and Alex Galchenyuk, with Yakupov being considered as a possible number one draft pick, and Galchenyuk going within the top ten, it is possible both could be playing NHL hockey in October of 2012.

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Consider that since 2007, every number one draft pick has gone straight to the NHL including ex-Sting Steven Stamkos who was drafted 1st overall in 2008, and was playing for the Tampa Bay Lighting the next season. Sarnia’s draft picks this year could fill the gapping hole the NHL draft will leave the Sting, with Sarnia selecting Ryan Kujawinski 4th overall and Davis Brown in the third round. Both are considered top scoring forwards. As well, Beaulieu traded for Taylor Carnevale from the Windsor Spitfires, who put up 35 goals and 35 assists for 70 points last season, adding another goal scorer to the mix. But defence is still a question, unless Beaulieu turns things around quickly with his defence-first coaching style. And with a large shake up possibly happening beyond the 2011-12 season, it will be on the shoulders of Beaulieu to steer the ship through the dangerous waters of Sarnia’s fan base, who is screaming for playoff hockey to once again return to the RBC Centre. With five players last season scoring 20 or more goals, and the addition of three more, which have the ability to, fans attending Sting action next season may get their first taste of playoff hockey since 2009. Unfortunately, depending on the draft and the NHL club’s ideas, it could be another wait after that. June 2011 |


Sarniasports Magazine June 2011  

Sarniasports Magazine June 2011 Vol 1. Iss. 3

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