Surrey Falcons celebrate their Bantam division B.C. championship Saturday afternoon (March 23) at Coquitlam’s Poirier Sport & Leisure Complex. (Photo: twitter.com/surrey_falcons)

MINOR HOCKEY

Surrey Falcons females win Bantam provincial hockey banner, place second in Peewee final

‘We told the girls that everyone had to contribute for us to be successful,’ head coach says

A pair of Surrey Falcons female hockey teams were medal-winners during provincial-championship games over the weekend.

The association’s Bantam team won the B.C. title Saturday afternoon (March 23) with a 4-2 victory over the tournament host Tri Cities team in Coquitlam.

The Falcons’ Peewee squad, meanwhile, was edged 3-2 by Kelowna in their provincial final game, played in Trail on Sunday evening (March 24), resulting in a silver medal.

In Coquitlam, the gold medal-winning Bantams were down 2-1 heading to the third period and rallied for three goals in the final frame to take the championship.

“We scored late in the second period,” head coach Tony Lindsay said Monday. “We went into the room after that and they had no doubt in their minds they could win it and beat Tri Cities. They were confident.”

Lindsay said heading in, any one of the six teams involved the round-robin tournament could have won the provincial banner. The other teams were from Prince George, South Island, Kelowna and Richmond.

“We finished third in league play,” he said. “With our team, we told the girls that everyone had to contribute for us to be successful, and all the girls bought into into that. It was great to see, and they were successful because of it.

“When you put the team first, it works,” he added. “It’s a very balanced team, and heading into every game, we did not know where the goals would come from. Everyone chipped in.”

In November, the team was selected to play the women of Team India in an exhibition game at Surrey Sport & Leisure Centre in Fleetwood, in a first on Canadian ice for the visitors.

On Saturday, the girls celebrated their B.C. banner by playing some shinny on the ice long after the game ended, Lindsay said, and then they ate some pizza in the parking lot, tailgate style.

“The girls just love to play,” he added. “It was a fantastic way to end our season.”

The Falcons’ Peewee team, meanwhile, went into Sunday’s final undefeated in round-robin play, with five wins over teams from Kelowna, North Shore, South Island, Trail and Prince George. In the final, however, Kelowna took the provincial title with an overtime goal.

“There are some strong Peewee players coming up, and we’ll have three players from our current roster on the (Bantam) team next year,” Lindsay added. “Most of our players are second-year players, so they’re going to Midget next year.”

Looking ahead, the Falcons association will host a “Come Try Hockey” session at Surrey Sport & Leisure Centre on Tuesday, April 2, from 5:15 to 7:15 p.m. Complete details are posted at surreyfalcons.ca.

Elsewhere on Sunday (March 24), Surrey Minor Hockey Association’s Thunder Storm team won the Bantam C tournament played at North Delta’s Sungod Arena, with a 5-4 win over North Delta Bulldogs. Thunder Storm captain Nalin Kalra scored all five goals for the winning team, and was a goal-scoring machine the entire season.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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