Thompson-Okanagan proved itself the strongest ringette team in the province when it beat Fraser River Delta 9-2 for gold at Matsqui Recreation Centre on Sunday.
The team was formed specifically for the winter games, but most players already knew each other from back home. They passed the ring quickly and often, which forward Alyssa Racine said was the reason they won.
“Our team passes more than most of the other teams,” said the 14-year-old from Vernon.
Their opponent Fraser River Delta was fighting for the game hard in the last few minutes, keeping Thompson-Okanagan’s goaltender fiercely protecting the crease. Fraser River Delta walked away with silver.
It was Thompson-Okanagan’s fourth game, and none of the games were close.
Head coach Ken Pak said the Thompson-Okanagan region has put a lot of effort into developing the game in recent years.
“The club in the Okanagan has done really well with coaches and developing players. That’s the key to our success.”
The region brought two teams to the BC Winter Games. Both teams made to the final rounds, with Thompson-Okanagan 2A losing the bronze medal to Fraser Valley.
The region’s efforts in ringette result in star players like Racine, as well as her teammates Emily Williams and Emma Carter. Pak says the three really stood out in the gold medal game.
“They set the tone for the game. Smart passes, faster shots,” he said.
The teammates return to the Okanagan proud on Sunday.