The Molson Centre in Barrie, Ontario- March 27, 2011.
Ok. There is something about the Montreal Stars; they played against the Toronto Furies in the Clarkson Cup in the Canadian Women's Hockey League championship. Call it team spirit or energy but it definitely makes them stand apart. For example, the team gave parents sitting in the stands the team’s hockey shirts to wear for the final game. And the parents responded by doing a little salsa dance a in the stands before the game. (My camera couldn't catch the salsa dance, only the shirts in the seats as the arena filled up)
That same spirited play was very much in evidence on the ice. Montreal jumped into the game with two quick goals by Noemi Marin and Vanessa Davidson in the first ten minutes of the first period. The game was fast and end to end with Toronto goalie Sami Jo Small getting most of the work. Her team took 4 of the five penalties in the second period. Montreal’s Dominique Thibault added another marker making it 3-0 at the end of two.
Midway through the third period Montreal clinched the game with two electric goals; one from league high scorer Caroline Ouellette and a brilliant goal by Sarah Vaillancourt who seemed to hang onto the puck forever before popping it by Sami Jo Small on a pass from Ouellette.
Goaltender Kim St. Pierre kept Montreal in the game preserving her shutout against 26 shots; Toronto’s Small had almost double the work, stopping 46 of 51 shots. Montreal 5, Toronto 0.
Assistant Captain Caroline Ouellette, a Team Canada veteran talked about the Montreal mystique, “It was a team effort, everyone really bought into the game plan.” She described the secret ingredient, “I think we have the greatest captain with Lisa Marie Breton (LeBreux), one of the greatest in the world. You can see her intensity on the ice but what she means to us in the dressing room is really outstanding.”
Goaltender Kim St. Pierre went even further by dedicating the Clarkson Cup to the captain saying,” I don’t know how she found the 40-50 ways of motivating us; things like seeing her phone text every morning. She kept motivating me to be here for her and all the girls on the team; that is what brought us together.”
Three stars at Clarkson Cup Championship game were:
First star: Montréal - Dominique Thibault
Second star: Montréal – Vanessa Davidson,
Third star: Toronto – Jennifer Botterill,
Sarah Vaillancourt was chosen as the MVP for the tournament.
2011 CLARKSON CUP posted March 18, 2011.
Canada’s elite players will battle for the biggest prize in Canadian Women’s Hockey.
The Canadian Women’s Hockey League (CWHL) will be the hosts for the annual Clarkson Cup at the Barrie Molson Centre in Barrie, Ontario from March 24th to 27th, 2011 bringing together the two elite senior women’s hockey leagues in Canada, the CWHL and Western Women’s Hockey League.
The Clarkson Cup was commissioned by and named for a Governor General of Canada (Adrienne Clarkson) and is the premiere sports trophy in women’s hockey.
Minnesota, the 2010 Clarkson Cup champions will face tough competition from Montreal, Brampton and Toronto after competing in pre-tournament play-offs. The 2010 Olympians set to play in the Clarkson Cup include Jayna Hefford, Gillian Apps, Jennifer Botterill, Tessa Bonhomme, Caroline Ouellette, Kim St-Pierre, Sarah Vaillancourt and Cherie Piper, all from Canada, and Julie Chu, Jenny Potter and Molly Engstrom, from the US national team.
Directions: The Barrie Molson Centre, 555 Bayview Drive, Barrie, ON L4N8Y2. Take exit 90 for Mapleview Drive off Highway 400 North. Turn right at Mapleview Drive E then turn left onto Bayview Drive after 200m. How to Buy Tickets: Call the Barrie Molson Centre, 705 -739 -4220 x 4617
Thursday, March 24
12 noon Game # 1
Brampton vs Toronto
6 pm Game # 2
Montreal vs Minnesota
Friday, March 25
12 noon Game # 3
Minnesota vs Toronto
7 pm Game # 4
Montreal vs Brampton
Saturday, March 26
11 am Game # 5
Brampton vs Minnesota
3 pm Game # 6
Montreal vs Toronto
Sunday, March 27
Clarkson Cup final 1:00pm.