The Russell U12 and U16 broomball teams emerged victorious in the 2024 Finch Youth Broomball Tournament.
After competing in four intense games for each team and competing against five other teams in the U12 category and seven teams in the U16 category, both Russell teams won their finals and brought home a gold medal, over the January 12 weekend.
Annelie Lanthier, the coach of the U12 Golden Knights, said the major difference between her team and the others is teamwork.
“I’m always pushing them to develop on their own. However, I’m very big on team effort,” said Lanthier. “But what you saw more on our team than others was how much they love playing together. So, it’s not always the one best player that stands out, it’s the team effort that I believe brought our team ahead.”
“To see all their effort paying off is really special to see.”
Played with broom and a ball about 15 centimetres in diameter, the closest sport to compare broomball to is hockey. The biggest differences being there are two halves instead of three periods, the offside is the red line instead of the blue, and, of course, there is no ice at all. The rest, such as rules and number of players, are the same as hockey.
Coach Lanthier wanted to point out a specific player on her team who stood out over the weekend, Thomas Lavigne.
“It was in the final game. It was only in the last six minutes that we actually scored in the second period – a huge top corner shot from Thomas. And the crowd just went wild,” said Lanthier. “You know, you can’t beat that moment.”
The Russell Golden Knights next tournament runs from February 16 to 18 in Belleville for the Jr. Provincial championship.