The Annual UVic Indoor Field Hockey Tournament took place on January 18-19 in the McKinnon gym in Victoria and was won by the Island Wildcats’ Black team, who defeated the UVic White team 5-1. The indoor tournament saw the Wildcats name on the trophy for the first time since 2013, following six-straight victories by the Vikes.
The Wildcats went undefeated in pool play scoring 19 goals in round-robin alone to top Pool A that included UVic White, UBC and the Rebels. Pool B was a grid lock with West Vancouver, Duncan and Wildcats White pushing for the Top 2 in their pool based on goal differential. West Vancouver ended up topping their pool, while Duncan took second by one goal. Duncan defeated West Vancouver in the third-place game, while Wildcats White defeated UBC for 5th and UVic Royal defeated Rebels for 7th.
There was a lot of experience on the floor as stalwart keeper Burgundy Biletski backstopped the 8th-placed Rebels, while the UBC Thunderbirds looked for their leadership through defender Hannah Eborall. On the UVic team, the back-to-back U SPORTS National champions split their outdoor side into two teams and had leadership from Judy Cristante on the UVic Royal team and Mel Robertson and Emily Wong on the UVic White team.
Duncan had an impressive return of athletes, all back on the team in honour of former coach and Cowichan contributor Les Mann, including Caitlin Erickson (Evans), Miranda Mann, Mary Nielsen and Crystal Poland. The Duncan team got a boost from mainland talents Anna Kozniuk, from West Vancouver, and Poonam Sandhu, from Vancouver.
The visiting West Van team was hosted by Georgia McGillivray and alongside her was a talented line up including former indoor national team member Kri Shier, as well as the skills of Paige Norris and Kaela Barker and the talented Sam Lyzun in goal.
The Wildcats also had their outdoor team split into two. The 5th-placed Wildcats White team featured the defensive experience of Kyla Kirby and Heather Wheatley, as well as the speed of Kira Starr in the middle. The Wildcats black team totalled over 30 goals in the tournament thanks to the teamwork of sisters Chloe and Stefanie Langkammer, while defensive anchors Ali Baggott, Meggan Oliver, Jenna Goodman and Birkley Anderson helped to minimize the efforts for keeper Theresa Kennedy who was outstanding in her first appearance on the hard wood.
Up next, most of the teams will regroup for the BC Senior Indoor Tournament, Feb. 1-2, in Duncan.
1. Wildcats Black
2. UVic White
4. West Vancouver
5. Wildcats White
7. UVic Royal