Friends On Ice Ringette tournament ready to go for 34th year

The Friends On Ice Ringette tournament is always the biggest of the year for Red Deer Ringette.

The 34th edition, which gets underway Friday morning is another behemoth event with close to 60 teams and nearly 1000 athletes ready to play in the three-day tournament.

Many of the teams participating will be from Alberta, with a few making the trek all the way from Saskatchewan.

The opportunity that presents according to one of the organizers Anita Joa, is a chance to showcase the provinces’ best players, who will descend on Red Deer next year for the 2019 Canada Winter Games.

“When we look at the tournament and with the push going into next year will be the Canada Winter Games, some of these girls at the U19 might even be playing for Alberta. Seeing them here at this level and cheer them on and at the next level will be fantastic,” Joa said.

Friends On Ice features young players in the under six category, all the way up to the under 19 age group and even a few women’s teams. Will all the age groups here for the event, it also provides a chance for young players to see where they can go in the sport.

“With Red Deer Ringette they focus on skill development and sportsmanship. To watch these girls skate is absolutely amazing. I can’t believe how fast-paced the game is,” Joa added.

There’s also been an adjustment in the schedule for the tournament, after the leak that effected the Kinex Arena earlier this week. Those games have been moved to the Collicutt Centre.

Play starts on Friday morning at 7:30 a.m. at the Collicutt and continues all day Saturday and into Sunday.

Considering a handful of Central Alberta players like Red Deer’s Breanna Beck and Lacombe’s Dailyn Bell, Jamie Bell, Lindsay Vink and Gillian Dreger all represented Canada at the Worlds in December, there’s plenty of potential to move forward with ringette.

“There are opportunities in ringette to definitely go farther than just U19,” Joa said.

“I think that it can be featured here in Canada or you can go overseas to play in world-class events is amazing.”

Scoring for the tournament will also be updated in real time at the tournament page.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Women’s marches underway in Canadian cities, a year after Trump inauguration

Women are gathering in dozens of communities across the country today to… Continue reading

Red Deer councillor balks at city getting stuck with more funding responsibilities

Volunteer Central seeks municipal funding after being cut off by government

Olds chicken barn burns to the ground, no livestock harmed

More than 100,000 chickens were saved as fire crews prevent the blaze from spreading

Bear video meant to promote conservation: zoo owner

Discovery Wildlife Park says it will look at other ways to promote its conservation message

WATCH: Setters Place grand opening in Red Deer

Red Deer’s Setters Place officially opened to the public Saturday afternoon.… Continue reading

In photos: Get ready for Western Canadian Championships

Haywood NorAm Western Canadian Championships and Peavey Mart Alberta Cup 5/6 start… Continue reading

WATCH: Red Deer city council debates cost-savings versus quality of life

Majority of councillors decide certain services are worth preserving

Got milk? Highway reopened near Millet

A southbound truck hauling milk and cartons collided with a bridge

Stettler’s newest residents overcame fear, bloodshed to come here

Daniel Kwizera, Diane Mukasine and kids now permanent residents

Giddy up: Red Deer to host Canadian Finals Rodeo in 2018

The CFR is expected to bring $20-30 million annually to Red Deer and region

Ice dancers Virtue and Moir to carry flag at Pyeongchang Olympics

Not since Kurt Browning at the 1994 Lillehammer Games has a figure… Continue reading

Beer Canada calls on feds to axe increasing beer tax as consumption trends down

OTTAWA — A trade association for Canada’s beer industry wants the federal… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month