Upper Canada College’s varsity hockey team claimed the title of the Barrow Tournament that it hosts annually for the sixth straight year over the weekend.
“The boys played fiercely and selflessly, displaying amazing skill, perseverance and character,” says Blues assistant coach Nick Morris.
The Blues started the eight-team tournament on Friday against Quebec’s Academie Ulysse. While they dominated the game from start to finish, including outshooting their opponents 15-1 in the first period, the boys struggled to beat the opposition’s goaltender. Regulation time ended in a 3-3 tie and overtime solved nothing. The game went to a shootout, where Blues goalie Colby Muise stood tall and the UCC shooters scored when they needed to in order to take the game.
The Blues faced a tougher opponent on Saturday morning in Le Sommet from Hawkesbury, Ont. It was a rematch of a semi-final contest in the Ulysse Tournament, where the Blues lost 1-0. The outcome was a little different this time, but it wasn’t easy. The teams ended regulation time in a 1-1 tie, stayed that way through overtime, and had to go to a shootout. Once again the Blues goaltending was strong, as this time Luca Imbrogno shut the door and allowed only one goal in three attempts, while Elliott McDermott and Samuel Morin both scored on their attempts to give the Blues the victory.
The Blues defeated St. Ignatius High School from Thunder Bay, Ont. 3-2 in overtime later on Saturday to win its very competitive pool with a 3-0 record.
In the Blues’ Sunday morning semi-final game against Blyth Academy, the two teams traded two goals in regulation and the outcome once again had to be decided in extra time. Two exciting periods of end-to-end hockey still couldn’t solve anything, but Reid Humphrey finally gave the Blues a 3-2 win with a goal just 33 seconds into the third overtime period.
With less than two hours between the end of that game and the beginning of the final, the Blues had to be exhausted. The fatigue certainly didn’t show, however, as the boys played a selfless, team-first brand of hockey that was probably their best of this still relatively young season. It was the only game that didn’t go to overtime, as the Blues outshone the Tigers from Ridley College in St. Catharines, Ont. from start to finish as they captured the championship with a 4-1 win.
The Barrow Tournament is named after Barbara Barrow, who served as UCC’s nurse from 1938 to 1980. From her retirement as nurse, almost to her death in 1994, the woman known to most at the College as “Miss B” managed an Old Boys office and wrote a column for the Old Times alumni magazine.
“Miss B would have been honoured to have two ‘Little Big Four’ teams competing for a tournament with her name attached,” says director of residential life Andrew Turner, referring to an old athletic conference that was comprised of UCC, Ridley, St. Andrew’s College and Trinity College School.