There was no shortage of action during the third-annual Timmins Rock Hockey Holiday Tournament at the McIntyre Arena Thursday and Friday.
And Rock president Ted Gooch couldn’t be any happier with the way things turned out.
“Last year, the event was just for Novice and Atom, but this year we opened things up to the Peewee age group,” he said.
“We had a lot of requests last year from parents wondering if we could open things up for the Peewee players and we took that suggestion and ran with it.
“We had a good turnout of Peewee kids, as well, this year.”
Many of the kids taking part in the event this year took part in the first two tournaments, as well.
“It is definitely growing and we are up to 127 kids this year, which is at least a 20 per cent increase over last year,” Gooch said.
“Kids are bringing their friends along and we are hoping to see further growth again next year.”
The Rock president was pleased with the turnout in the stands, as well as on the ice surface.
“The Novice, especially, has been super incredible,” Gooch said.
“During the semi-final match-up, about an hour ago, there must have been about 150 parents, friends and family cheering the kids on in the crowd.
“It has really been awesome to see.”
One of the attractions of the tournament, of course, is the participants get to be coached by current Rock players.
“Some of them are taking things very seriously,” Gooch said.
“There has been a little bit of a side competition going, as well, for the boys, which has given them some extra motivation.
“Some of them really get into it and absolutely love it. It is a fun event, not only for the participants but also for our players turned coaches.
“The participants absolutely look up to them, for sure. They come in and look forward to this event every year during their Christmas break. They get to spend two days, play four or five games and get coached by Rock players.
“It is a special treat for them.”
The Novice teams taking part in this year’s tournament were coached by Karter Renouf and Cameron Kosurko; Owen Shier and Aidan Milne; Evan Beaudry and Brendan Boyce; and Eric Moreau and Josh Anderson.
Coaching the Atom players were Riley Robitaille and Linden Spencer; captain Derek Seguin and Tyler Schwindt; Tyler Gilberds and Riley Brousseau; Josh Dickson and Zach Smith; and Phil Caron and Stewart Parnell.
The Peewee squads were coached by Rock general manager Kevin Peever and Rock ambassador Nicholas Gelinas; Vance Meyer and David Laroche; and Tyler Masternak and Jonah Devereux.
In case there was any lingering doubt, fans can count on the tournament — that has used a three-on-three format the past two years — being back in 2021.
“It is a great opportunity for us to give back to so many great Rock families, kids and supporters,” Gooch said.
“We are super happy with the outcome of this year’s event and we hope to see it continue for many years to come.”
There was a free public swim in the pool at the Archie Dillon Sportsplex following Thursday’s action and free public skating at the McIntyre Arena after the buzzer sounded on the final championship game Friday.