EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is one in a series of profiles highlighting this year's nominees for the 30th annual Truro Sport Heritage Society Awards Dinner Thursday at the Best Western Glengarry. Tickets are $40 for adults and $25 for students and are available by contacting Farida at 897-4799 or by emailing Fgab47@gmail.com.
Outstanding High School Team
SCA Girls Slo-pitch
The SCA girls slo-pitch team had another successful season in 2013.
The Wolves won their 10th consecutive Northumberland region championship and went on to defend their title as provincial champions for the fifth consecutive year.
There are plenty of challenges in playing a spring sport in Nova Scotia, as the season is very short, and the weather may not always cooperate. Part of the reason for the success this team had in 2013 has to do with the training they do, which isn't always on a ball field. This group of 14 girls started their training indoors in March to prepare themselves for the quick season, which ends with the provincial championship the first weekend in June.
These girls work hard to develop their skills, whether in a gym, or on a soccer field, or in tournaments, they are always pushing each other to be the best. Regardless of what tournament they win, whether it is the Cape Breton Invitational, or the SCA Invitational tournament, their best accomplishment is being good sports on the field. It is a special team that can work hard to be the best they can be, while at the same time respecting their opponents and treating them with dignity and respect.
CEC Boys Soccer
For the CEC boys soccer team, the 2013 season was the best on record since the program began in 1978.
Overall, the Cougars were 15-1-1, along the way capturing both the Hants East and King's Edgehill tournament titles.
Within the Northumberland region, CEC ran the table, winning every game on their way to the regional banner with a win over the Dr. J.H. Gillis Royals. Next, CEC had to play against Dartmouth High School for a spot in the provincial final four. By winning 4-0, CEC advanced to the provincial championship tournament for only the fifth time in the program's history.
Once at provincials, CEC faced the defending champion Halifax West Warriors and suffered a heartbreaking 2-1 loss, as the Warriors would go on to defend their title. Bouncing back in the bronze medal game, CEC defeated Citadel 5-4 in extra time to win the team's second consecutive bronze. It was just the second medal in the history of the program.
With an impressive 67 goals, two players, Mike Vanderpoel and Ben Gorringe both broke the single season scoring record of 14 with 23 and 20 goals respectively. Always a respectful group of young men, the Cougars demonstrated great skill, speed and tenacity on the field, while giving back to the community off the field with the whole team, (coaches included), fundraising and running in the 9k Terry Fox run.
In 2013, the first season of the Nova Scotia High School Lacrosse League, (NSHSLL), CEC set the bar high for those who will follow at the school. The Cougars proved to be the best in the province, finishing the season with a 2-0-1 record at the top of the standings.
In those three games, CEC scored 34 goals - 19 coming from season scoring leader Brendan Turner - and only 14 against, thanks in part to the strong defensive play of top defenseman Richard MacNevin.
After winning the provincial semifinal by a score of 11-1, CEC went on to play the C.P. Allen Cheetahs in the final. The Cheetahs were the only team Cobequid did not beat, but tied 9-9 in the regular season.
CEC came out flying, winning the provincial championship 11-2. Not only do these players train for their own development, but also give back to the lacrosse program, whether it be through helping with clinics, coaching younger teams, or becoming officials to give younger players a chance to play.
Outstanding Team Award (21 years and over)
Colleen Pinkney Curling Team
Skip Colleen Pinkney, third Wendy Currie, second Shelly MacNutt and lead Susan Creelman, along with coach Judy Burgess, began 2013 by winning the provincial senior women's title in Digby to earn a berth in the Canadian championship in Summerside, P.E.I.
For the provincial final, Pinkney defeated the previous provincial champion 8-5 to earn a berth in the Canadian championship, and a return to P.E.I for nationals, a tournament they had won three years before in the same location.
After the round robin, team Pinkney had one loss, placing them in the national final, which they won.
Also, three members of team Pinkney were selected for tournament all-star awards, with one member missing her all-star spot by 1%.
In the final, team Pinkney came back from a two-point deficit late in the game to defeat Alberta to win the Canadian championship, and they will represent Canada in the World championship this April in Scotland.
The Nova Scotia Curling association awarded team Pinkney with the team of the year title, and the team also received a nomination for the Ricoh Sports Awards in April 2013. The dedication of these women to the sport of curling has paid off, whether by their own training under the watchful eye of coach Judy Burgess, and through the help of some national coaches and sports psychologists, team Pinkney continues to play at an elite level and has reaped the rewards of their focus and attention to detail.
Judy Burgess Curling Team
Every year, there is a curling event for the top 12 teams in Canada over the age of 60 to compete for the Canadian Master's Curling Championships.
In mid February, skip Judy Burgess, third Helen Brightman, second Jackie Connick and lead Penny Neily, traveled to Sackville to compete at Lakeshore Curling Club for the honour of representing Nova Scotia at the Canadian championships. As well as being strong competitors, team Burgess' smart play helped them win their first provincial title in the Master's category, and also earned them a spot in the Maritime Master's Championship in Fredericton, N.B.
At the Maritime championship in March, team Burgess had an impressive showing, finishing in the runner-up spot. On April 6th they departed for Thunder Bay, Ont., to compete for the Canadian Championship at the Port Arthur Curling Club. They finished the event with a 3-5 record, but as always were great sports both on and off the ice, as well as always being great ambassadors of the sport of curling.
Dalhousie Rams Women's Rugby
When the Dalhousie Rams women's rugby team began its 2013 season, the veterans and the new additions to the team had one goal, to win the ACAA championship.
The previous two years the team had successfully made the final, but lost by five points on both occasions.
This group of women kicked their training into high gear right from the beginning of the season to make sure their fitness and skill level would carry them through to a title. With only four games in the regular season, every game is crucial to finishing first in the standings.
The Rams did just that, posting a 3-1 record, which meant there was a tie for first place with the Mount Allison Mounties. However, the first place team was determined comparing points for and against, putting the Rams on top.
In the ACAA final, Dalhousie had a quick start, giving them a 10-point cushion, and they held on to defeat Mount Allison 22-17. It was the first conference rugby title for the Rams, which also placed seven players on the All-Conference team.
Joan Cole was also named player of the year, and coach Dave Cotterill was handed the coach of the year honour.
Truro Daily News Merit Award
APEX Invitational Golf Association
In 1973, Darrell Maxwell had an idea to create a black golf tournament, chiefly as a means to claim bragging rights among his peers on West Prince Street.
With the help of his famous brother Stan (Chook), and a few prominent club members, the first tournament was launched in 1974. Soon this became an opportunity for the Black diaspora to come back home to vacation and play some competitive golf. It had become a homecoming.
That first tournament had 17 golfers and was a one-day affair with Danny Maxwell winning. After Darrell moved to Ottawa, Chook and Arthur (Artie) Jordan took the reins and renamed it after their business, the Apex Cleaning Services Ltd. It soon blossomed to 75 golfers, men and women, and became multi-racial. The committee eventually incorporated as the Apex Invitational Golf Association and soon established, to its great credit, a scholarship fund for post secondary assistance for young black students. To date over $50,000 has been issued to more than 70 students.
The summer of 2013 saw the Apex celebrate its 40th birthday. Its committee members include Kevin Jackson, Trevor Jordan, Foster Paris, Wayne Talbot, Butch Borden, Nolan Borden, Corrie Tynes, Jude Clyke, Artie Jordan and many other dedicated friends.
The Apex Golf Tournament is one of our town's great sports success stories and continues to flourish. This organization is a worthy recipient of the Truro Sport Heritage Society's Award of Merit.