When the Elora-Fergus Edge U14 AA girls’ ringette team heads to the Eastern Canadian Championships in Repentigny, Quebec next month, St. Jacobs resident Maddie MacLean, who plays forward for the squad, will be there looking for gold. The team qualified for the tournament after falling to Guelph in the provincial championship finals by a score of 4-0 in Whitby on Mar. 4. The top two teams in the province move on to the eastern championships, the highest level of competition for Maddie’s age group.
“I’m really excited for it and I know that my team is too,” said Maddie, 12, a Grade 7 student at St. Jacobs Public School.
“I’m really happy. I’ve never gotten this far before in ringette, so I’m really excited.””] The tournament brings together the top nine U14AA teams from Eastern Canada, including Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. This is Maddie’s first year on the Elora squad after playing for Waterloo the past seven years. When Waterloo decided not to create a U14 AA team this year, Maddie and five of her Waterloo teammates decided to try out for the Elora-Fergus Edge last May.
The team has excelled this year, going 45-11-3 combined, and winning two golds and four silvers in the six tournaments they have entered. While it’s been a lot of work for Maddie and her family, it’s been worth it, says her mother, Leanne.
“It’s certainly a family commitment, this will be her seventh tournament so there is a lot of travelling and time off of work and school, but she balances it really well with school and her other activities.
“It’s been an exciting season.”
Coach Dave Eccles said the team is well-prepared for the tournament, and are looking forward to an eventual rematch with their rivals from Guelph. “We have high expectations, to be honest. Going in, we feel we have as good a chance as anyone else to win it all.”