Tillsonburg U8s engineering some fun

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The actual scores didn't really matter in the U8 division of the 2014 Tillsonburg Ringette TwisterFest Tournament on the weekend.

They were not posted on the scoreboard during games and they did not count for any tournament standings. The three U8 teams – Tillsonburg, Dorchester, St. Marys – played strictly for fun. And in the process learned a little more ringette.

Improvement this season has been huge, said Tillsonburg U8 Jade Engineering Inc. assistant coach Jenny Ratter, filling in for coach Andre Brisson who was sidelined by a hockey injury a week earlier.

"Fantastic," nodded Ratter. "We had little girls who couldn't even stand up on the ice, to now, they know where they're supposed to be and they're learning the skills of the game."

The highlight of the tournament, said Ratter, was their passing.

"Three fantastic passing plays – I was so proud of them. They're really getting their skills up and improving a lot. We've been seeing it throughout the year. And the main thing is they're all still having fun."

The Jade Engineering U8s are also building for the future – Karina Bednar, 3, and Paige Slaght, 4, are two of the youngest Twisters.

"We do have a lot of first-year skaters," said Ratter, a former ringette player "ages ago" who introduced her daughters to the sport this season.

"And they're all doing well," nodded assistant coach Shannon Beadow. "Awesome."

"I think they're really enjoying the game," said Ratter.

"The thing we had some difficulty with today (Saturday) was positioning, but we also haven't played a game since the middle of December. So we're going to work on some positioning for our next game."

Unofficially the Jade Engineering U8s were 1-1 in the tourney with a close win over St. Marys and a loss to Dorchester. On the roster are: Claudia Bednar, Zelia Brisson, Emily Ratter, Kennedy Slaght, Paige Slaght, Karina Bednar, Morgan Barnard, Merissa Kyle, Nevaen O'Donnell, Nadia VanAsseldonk, Kylie Mendonca, Kathleen Balega and Kendra Slaght.

chris.abbott@sunmedia.ca

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