Gold, silver and courage in Creston

Nelson U15 boys, U14 girls and U13 girls take on regional competition at the Creston Blitzz tournament.

Nelson U15 Selects boys had to settle for a tie for the gold medal at last weekend’s Creston Blitzz tournament.

Nelson won all three of its games to tie Creston for top spot overall. Creston also finished undefeated, but the two sides never met.

In its opening match, Nelson dominated the play against a pesky Kootenay South team, but were only able to register a 1-0 victory.

“Kootenay South is a very strong defensive team,” said coach Scott Lewis.

In its next game, Nelson again dominated the play against Calgary Chinook, but were only able to come away with a one-goal win, this time 2-1. Justin Willness scored the winner for Nelson.

“This was our best game and we moved the ball really well,” added Lewis. “I have also have to give credit to Justin Willness for a great effort.”

In its final match, Nelson again dominated, winning 4-0 over Kootenay East, who only had two shots on net all game.

“Our regular keeper Cole Sutherland was injured and played forward for us and Liam (Butterfingers) Butterfield played goal all weekend for us,” added Lewis. “He did a great job even though he was hardly tested.”

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Nelson’s U14 girls took home the silver medal from Creston, but the local girls missed the gold by the smallest of margins — a single point.

In its opening game against Nelson’s U13 girls, Lua Gerun scored the only goal of the game to give the older girls the 1-0 win.

Nelson then took on host Creston in a game that was not even close. Nelson won 8-0.

Goals were scored by Sage Wilton, Emma Schrader, Abby Willans, Chiara Chirico, Jena Wheeldon and Aroha Taiatini-Senechal.

In the toughest game of the tournament, Nelson took on Columbia Valley, but neither team was able to break through and the game ended 0-0.

Unfortunately, for Nelson’s U14s, Columbia Valley beat Nelson’s U13s 2-0, which gave them one more point than Nelson and ultimately the gold medal.

The girls’ next action will be the Kootenay Playdowns, where they will have to battle Columbia Valley, Kootenay South and Kootenay East to see who will represent this region at the upcoming provincials.

BEYOND THEIR YEARS

Playing up a year in the U14 girls division, the U13 Selects girls impressed their coaches  with their weekend performance.

In its opening game, Nelson U13 girls battled Nelson’s U14 girls and ended up on the wrong side of a very close 1-0 score.

“The U13 defensive line of Merissa Dawson, Maya Mierau, Emma Gregorich, and Kyra Burkart played very well in front of keeper Haley Cooke, who played an outstanding game holding off a hard charging older squad for most of the game,” said coach Paul Burkart. “The U14 girls scored the lone goal late in the game to gain the victory.”

On Saturday morning, the U13s lost to the older U14 Columbia Valley Titans by a score of 2-0.

“We fought hard through challenging weather conditions and a pitch that in places was more mud than grass,” added Burkart.

In its final match, Nelson dumped Creston Blitzz 9-nil.

“We succeeded in controlling play and were rewarded with goals by six different players,” said Burkart.

Scoring for Nelson were Allie Zondervan (3), Darian Voisard (2), Naomi Perkins (1), Bronwyn Sutherland (1), Callie Reimer (1), and Amelia Martze (1).

“We were extremely pleased with the courage shown by the Nelson U13 squad when facing the older squads,” Burkart added.

“The players continued to improve throughout the tournament, and ended on a positive note with a decisive victory.”