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Orangeville Flyers Peewee AE team raise championship banner

November 20, 2020   ·   0 Comments

By Brian Lockhart

The Orangeville Flyers Peewee AE 1 team were awarded the OMHA championship after a stellar season that saw them go the distance.

The Flyers were practicing in preparation for their final provincial championship series against the Belleville Bulls when they received word on March 12, that hockey in the province had been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. They never got to play the final series to determine who was the best team in Ontario.

The OMHA decided to award a co-championship to minor hockey teams that had already started playing their final series or were about to enter a final as one of two teams left standing.

The Flyers had an outstanding season in 2019 / 20.

They recorded their first tournament championship in November when they won the Bradford Blue & Gold Classic. They went on to win the Chatham Regional Silver Stick with a win over London in the final game.

Just prior to the OMHA playoffs, the Flyers travelled to Pelham for the International Silver Stick tournament and were up against 11 other regional qualifiers from Canada and the U.S. They left with another win for the season.

The regular season ended with 23-5 win for the O-ville team.

“We had a winning season,” said Flyers peewee head coach, Wayne Braiden. “We won the league and from there we went on to the All-Ontarios, the quarters and the semis. We were in the finals with Belleville. The series was cancelled on the Thursday and our first game was scheduled for Saturday. That Belleville team, we beat them in the Silverstick tournament – it would have been a really good series.”

Coach Braiden instilled a real work ethic in his team and the players bought into the program and worked hard through the season.

He had the team’s motivation etched onto the silver stick award. The award featured the words, passion, desire, drive, and want.

“It’s really about life,” coach Braiden said. “You have a passion for something, you’ve got the desire to put forth whatever effort you need. It takes drive – there’s going to be ups and downs. And the want – how bad do you want it? This is really what I coached all year.”

The team had 17 team players – two goalies and 15 skaters.

“They were great to coach and we had great practices,” coach Braiden said. “We played hard and we played with a goal. We wanted to get to some finals in some tournaments. As the season went on, we talked about all that stuff.”

To celebrate the season, Orangeville Minor Hockey had a ceremony at the Alder Street arena to hand out the coveted ‘red hats’ and present the championship banner. The red hats bear the OMHA championship logo.

Representing Orangeville Minor Hockey were, president Rick Stevens, vice president Terry Sheppard, and VP rep director Michelle Bridges.

Special guests included Dufferin-Caledon member of parliament, Kyle Seebeck, and NHL referee Shandor Alphonso.

The championship banner will be autographed by the team and proudly displayed in the arena.



         

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