It was 'all systems go' last Sunday afternoon for the Tillsonburg U16 Twisters.
The Tillsonburg Back in Motion Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation U16s had tied St. Thomas Saturday morning in a TwisterFest ringette tournament opener, then defeated Ayr (9-3) and Exeter-Seaforth (8-2) to set up a rematch with St. Thomas in the division final.
Leading St. Thomas 4-3 in the second period, Hayley Martin and Lauren Cowan scored two goals each to turn it into a one-sided 9-4 victory.
"They (St. Thomas) were kind of a chippy team," said Back in Motion coach Mike Dew. "There is a bit of a rivalry there. We told our girls to play smart, stay focused on the game – not the extra stuff that goes on, on the ice."
The discipline paid off with multiple power plays, including a five-on-three, and three Twister power-play goals.
"That was the difference because they (St. Thomas) were forever digging out of a hole they had dug themselves into.
"We've played them before – they have a couple strong shooters and you have to isolate them."
The U16 Twisters have struggled at times this season, said Dew, but they turned it around in the tournament.
"It's the skill the coaches knew they had all along. They decided they had it. We had a little talk before the tournament and they understood.
"It spiraled up this weekend and it started from the back end. Our goalie (Mackenzie Lindie) – she's new this year – was making the big saves, gaining the confidence. You could see it in the first game against St. Thomas when we tied 6-6. The confidence continued to roll and it just sort of grew all weekend. She was riding a wave and the girls fed off that. The girls in front of her played as at team – many goals, many assists, we spread it around."
They were running the clock toward the end, said Dew, trying to keep possession.
"We've learned our lesson in the past, don't let up. It's a game of momentum and we wanted to keep that momentum. Even though we had a comfortable lead, we didn't want to let go of that momentum. The girls found some confidence and they were firing on all cylinders, every single one of them. This weekend we got effort from everybody, the whole team."
Skating into the second half of the season, the Back in Motion Twisters have two more tournaments and Western Region Regional Finals in Guelph.
"It's nice to be peaking in the second half," Dew summed up.
Back in Motion 8, Exeter-Seaforth 2
Tillsonburg scoring: 1. Hannah Bosma (Lauren Cowan); 2. Kaitlyn Gee (Hayley Martin); 3. Hannah Bosma (Lauren Robbins); 4. Kaitlyn Gee; 5. Stephanie Parker (Lauren Robbins); 6. Hannah Bosma; 7. Kaitlyn Gee (Katie Becht, Hayley Martin); 8. Hannah Bosma (Lauren Robbins).
Back in Motion 9, St. Thomas 4
Tillsonburg scoring: 1. Lauren Robbins (Lauren Cowan); 2. Katie Becht (Hayley Martin); 3. Lauren Robbins (Lauren Cowan); 4. Hayley Martin (Emma Dew); 5. Hayley Martin (Kaitlyn Gee); 6. Lauren Cowan (Lauren Robbins); 7. Hayley Martin; 8. Lauren Cowan (Lauren Robbins, Emma Dew); 9. Hannah Bosma (Lauren Cowan, Emma Dew).