Thursday, January 29, 2015

2015 Pincher Creek Old-timers Tournament

Creakers vs Banshees
J. Jackson photo

Joey Jackson, Toni Lucas, Chris Davis

The 36th Annual Pincher Creek Old-timers Annual Tournament was held last weekend at the MCC Arena.

Gold medals went to teams in three divisions, based upon aggregate points.

Chinooks from Calgary (A)
Rusty Blades from Sparwood (B)
Old Thunder from Claresholm (C)

Two women played in the tourney, one for the Olsons (from All Over), and one for Claresholm's Old Thunder.  Twelve teams participated, from exotic climes as far removed as Coaldale, Calgary, Elk Valley, Fort Macleod, High River, Lethbridge, and from many places in between came players of all those teams.

Local team the Olsons returned once again with their big family team, teammates being an Olson or connected to one in some way or another. Kevin Olson explained how the tournament came to be.  "After Herman Olson passed away it was important to keep the tournament and the team together, moving the tournament to Pincher from Vauxhall was a good idea to get more people and more teams involved."

Castaways vs Chinooks, Chinooks win "A" Gold
J. Jackson photo
A new addition to the Olsons this year was first year player Kristy Olson, who as one of the female players in the tournament had a memorable time playing. She spoke about her involvement in her first year, saying  “ I'm married into the family.  Playing on this team is a great time and we're playing against great people”.   After being asked about her favorite moment from her first time, she said  it was her game-winning goal against Coaldale's Sugar Daddies. 

Olsons vs Sugar Daddies
J. Jackson photo
The event again included the ever-popular Mickey Shootouts that punctuated the finales of each game, pitting forward against goalie  for the sole reward of the glory of it and, if successful, a stiff drink for the pain.  While we're on that subject, thanks to those who had a drink too many and availed themselves of the Legion van to get to the banquet etc.  You guys knew how to party and you knew how to travel while partying - with a sober someone else behind the wheel.  That's my kind of hockey.

Organizer and athlete Dan Crawford plays for the Creakers.  He said “ The tournament isn't for prizes or anything like that, its just for the older players to get out and have fun, that's why we have the shootout.  It lets the older players that don't have a chance to go down the ice on a breakaway have a chance to show us their moves."

RCMP Sgt. Roxanne Baalim (ret.) 
At the beginning of their banquet, organizers and participants at Pincher Creek Community Hall paused for a moment of silence to respect slain St. Albert RCMP Constable David Matthew Wynn.  Click here to read more about that.

After the banquet the crowd was treated ("despoiled" perhaps a more accurate word) by the ribald humor of Puck 'N Funny comedians Mike Dambra and Drew Bhem, who also entertained at a Pincher Creek Rotary fundraiser in the hall the evening before.  Stay tuned for an article about that.

"It was a great success again," said organizer Dan Crawford afterward.  "Thank you to everyone for your support."

"Ten minutes for looking so good!"*
*may not be exactly as quoted


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