The U14AA Blaze ringette team were in St. Albert to represent the province as team Alberta March 27 to March 30.
There were 10 teams competing from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. The Blaze were undefeated during the tournament winning six games. The Blaze won gold against Calgary Red by a score of 7-3.
Guy Bailie one of the assistant coaches for the U14AA Blaze got involved with this team due to his daughter Alyssa Bailie, she played at the AA level last year and tried out again this year. She made the team and Baiie made the choice to apply to become an assistant coach, he was was chosen and has enjoyed each moment of the season with this team.
"The girls started the season a fairly skilled group of individuals for sure, but probably the biggest thing is joining together as a team and becoming a cohesive unit throughout the season," said Bailie looking back on the growth of the team.
The had one goal this season and that was to represent Team Alberta at the Western Canadian Ringette Championships, with a group of high leve athletes from Airdrie, Cochrane, and Indus ringette associations as well as four players from Strathmore.
Finishing the season with a record of 52-11-4 many wins coming in tournaments, the team had success winning four tournaments and a third-place finish in another tournament.
Bailie discussed the team approach this season of taking each game one at a time, the ultimate goal was to represent Alberta "This was a huge honour for them that was their goal this was to become team Alberta and then winning provincials allowed them to go to the Western Canadian Championships as team Alberta."
Bailie saw the drive and determination in this team throughout the whole season, they have worked hard on their conditioning knowing they could outlast any team they came up against.
In the final game Team Alberta played Calgary Red who they had played many times over the course of the season both teams went into this final knowing the others game plan, "They went in pushing us really hard at the start hoping to get up by a few goals. They did manage to get up on us early in the game but our girls never wavered once in their end goal which was to come out on top," said Bailie
After a hard fought battle Bailie said the score didn't reflect the tough game that this team played.
When the final was over and Team Alberta won the championship Bailie described the dressing room mood as pure excitement but also a bittersweet feeling. The team was proud of their accomplishments but knew this was the last time they would play together as this team.
A team together for seven months during the season achieved the ultimate victory, but Bailie believes what this team will walk away with not only a championship but a lifelong connection with each other.