Bishop Ryan Celtics Redefine Award in Team Victory

Bishop Ryan Celtics Redefine Award in Team Victory
Posted on 01/16/2024

By Larry Moko
For the first time in the four-year history of Bishop Ryan Celtics’ Warrior of the Game award, an individual player didn’t win it.

Instead, it went to every member of the squad.

“Our Warrior of the Game is basically the hardest working player,” BR coach Justin Cannon said after the Celtics defeated the St. Thomas More Knights 6-1 at Morgan Firestone Arena Monday.

The coveted Warrior prize is a green-coloured hard hat “with logos and stuff” on it. Either a coach or the most recent recipient is responsible for selecting the winner and passing the helmet on from game to game.
“Today it was the coaches,” Cannon said of the choice.

“We gave it to the whole team because it was a team effort. This was a big game. Absolutely I was pleased. Unbelievable.”
After More defenceman Julian Carbone scored on a power play with one minute, 33 seconds left the in the first period, the Celtics struck for six unanswered goals.

Just 43 seconds after More’s marker, centre Levi Snider carried the puck from behind the Knights’ net and wristed in a shot to the stick side. It was his first of two goals.

“He’s been on an absolute tear,” Cannon said.

Winger Carter Rogers also scored twice for the Celtics while singles went to defencemen Luca Alfieri and Nathan Jones.
With the win, Bishop Ryan (4-0-2) moved into a tie for first place with the Bishop Tonnos Titans (4-1-2) in the Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic standings.

More could have gained a share of top spot with a victory but slipped to 3-2-2.

The league’s only other game saw the St. John Henry Newman Cardinals take a point for the first time in seven starts – a 3-0 decision over the St. Mary Crusaders (2-5).

“Bishop Ryan looked fast today and they capitalized on their chances,” More coach Gino Leone said. “We had trouble getting pucks to the net. So hats off to them. They played really well.”

More had a chance to narrow the gap from 3-1 with one minute remaining in the second period. That’s when centre James Sinclair took a breakaway pass but was outguessed by BR netminder Jacob Hicks.

Last season, during Bishop Ryan’s 6-5 semifinal playoff victory over More, Sinclair scored four times.

“There’s no question (Sinclair) controls our offence,” Leone said. “They did a really good job of checking and staying close to him. They didn’t give him many opportunities.”

According to the More coach, the Knights appeared “rusty” after being idle for 25 days.

“We’re a pretty strong team,” he said. “We’ve got to use this as a learning experience.”

In their previous meeting this season, Bishop Ryan and More skated to a 2-2 tie.

The Celtics are two-time defending champions. In addition, they’ve been to the league final five times in the past six years.

Photos by Bob Butrym / RFB Sport Photography

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