In their first year ever, the R.I.S.E Ringette U16A team placed fourth in the province at provincials on Sunday. They were about as close as you could get to earning a medal, hitting the crossbar on a game tying shot with only 1.8 seconds left on the clock.
Head coach of the U16A R.I.S.E Jamie Raniey says the girls will be more excited about being fourth as the days progress but are still wishing they got the medal.
“They really wanted a medal so once it sticks that they actually did accomplish something pretty amazing, they will be happier with it for sure.”
R.I.S.E stand for Rockyford, Indus, Strathmore, Extreme and Rainey said bringing 14 and 15-year-old girls from three different communities come together had a learning curve for the team initially.
“It has taken a lot of hard work and learning how to get along with different personalities for the team to get where they are now. Most of them didn’t really know each other, so they really had to become a team rather quickly.”
Rainey looked back fondly over the last year with her team and says that her favorite memory so far is when her team won gold at the Spruce Grove Sweetheart Tournament last month. She also explains what the team has improved the most with over this last session.
“The defense struggled at the beginning of the session, and they ended up being super rock solid this past weekend. They learned to communicate better and figured out how to play better.”
R.I.S.E was a pilot project to bring these communities together to field a more competitive team, and the incredible showing of the U16A team means R.I.S.E will be here to stay. As for what the future holds for the U16A team, Rainey says that most of her team will be moving up to the U19A team and hopefully they will have new players for the U16A team.
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