Big weekend for RSS sports
It was a big weekend in high school sports for Rossland this weekend as the RSS boys got their kicks as hosts of the Provincial A high school soccer tournament while the RSS girl’s field hockey team broke out their sticks in Burnaby.
Playing host to the 16 team tournament on fields in Rossland, Trail and Fruitvale the young RSS boys soccer team got a taste of high end competition as teams from across the province descended on the Rossland area for a three day tournament of the beautiful game.
The Rossland boys opened the tournament on Thursday with a 3-1 loss to the Kelowna Christian School on their home turf in the morning followed up by an 8-0 loss to St. Thomas Aquinas. Regrouping after a tough start to the tournament the boys came out fired up Friday morning and picked up a hard fought 1-Nil victory over St. John Brebeuf. That afternoon another close match saw North Island take Rossland 2-1.
Finishing the Round Robin with a one and three record, Saturday’s finals pitted RSS against familiar foes Boundary Central out of Midway in a battle to decide15th place. Closing out the tournament in style, Rossland walked off the field victors in their final game with a 4-0 win in time to catch the championship match at Haley Park between Glenlyon and Immaculate. Glen Lyon ultimately took home the crown in a three nil shutout.
Lucking into a stretch of good weather before the skies opened on Sunday, word from all involved was that Rossland pulled off a successful tournament as hosts and all involved had fun and got in some high level soccer action.
“It was a really successful tournament,” noted Rick McKinnon, tournament organizer and RSS coach. “The kids had a good time. The weather was great. The fields were in excellent shape. You really can’t ask for anything better than that!”
The RSS squad consisting of largely younger players will see the bulk of their team stick together for several more years to build on the experience they gained in their fifteenth place finish.
“Hopefully they had fun,” added McKinnon. “It was a learning experience. They are a young squad so they know now what good soccer players looks like and how top level teams perform. It was a good learning experience for them; they learned a lot and had fun meeting some of the other players.”
As well as providing a great opportunity for the kids to play and meet other soccer players from around the province the event also provided an economic kick to the region during the shoulder season with over 300 people coming to the region over three days for the event.
Throughout the weekend, organizers heard nothing but positive comments from visiting teams on how smoothly the tournament ran and how much they enjoyed their time in our area.
“I have gotten three or four e-mails from other teams and other coaches already saying how much fun they had and how smoothly everything ran and everything went well. It was really a positive experience for all involved and we look forward to hosting again when our turn comes around next.”
While the boy’s soccer team played host, the RSS girl’s field hockey team was down in the Lower Mainland in Burnaby overachieving in the high school double A championships.
Coming into the tournament seeded ninth, the girls worked their way into the bronze medal game which finished in dramatic style. Closing out regulation time the RSS Royals and Glenlyon Norfolk out of Victoria were tied one goal a piece with Justine Armour scoring for the Royals. In overtime it briefly appeared as if RSS’s medal hopes had been dashed as officials called a disputed shot the winning goal. That decision was overturned by the officials and play resumed as overtime ended solving nothing.
Deciding the game in a shootout, the Royals came home with the bronze as Marissa DeRosa, Sam Spearn and Taylor McKinnon scored while RSS goaltender Kayla Zimmer allowed only a single goal in a tense finish.
Little Flower Academy took the gold at the event.