The Northern Sliders Hockey Club Will Be Playing St. Charles College In Exhibition Sledge Hockey Game During Renegades Tournament

 The sport of Sledge Hockey is going to become much more popular now that Team Canada won the Gold Medal at the Olympics this year. Above, is a team photo of the Northern Sliders, the first northern sledge hockey team to play out of the area.
Head Coach, Jack Raymond, shown on the right, has been with the team since its inception in the year 2000. He describes the game as being exactly the same as regular hockey except that the players move around on aluminum boards that have blades attached to the bottom. It is a game that is usually played by people who have lost the use of their legs or have some other physical or mental challenge that prevents them from participating in a regular hockey program. The rules are the same as ice hockey and at the older levels there is quite a bit of body contact. The only difference is that the sticks are much shorter and they have a "pick" at the end so that they can dig in to the ice to propel the player.

The Northern Sliders consist of 21 players between the ages of 9 and 19 years of age. They practice every Saturday night from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and play in a number of tournaments around the continent. As a matter of fact, they will be playing in West Springfield, Massachusetts in March to round out the 2005-2006 season.

Eleven year old, Sylvain Labelle, shown below, has been with the club for four seasons and plays defense. He gives you a good idea of what the sled looks like and how a person is strapped inside.

The Northern Sliders will be putting on an exhibition game on Saturday, March 25, 2006, at the Centennial Arena in Hanmer as part of the Annual Renegades Minor Hockey Tournament. The game will begin at 6:50 p.m.

The opponents of the Northern Sliders will be none other than the St. Charles College Boys Hockey Team, one of the top high school teams in the district.

"The high school boys have no idea how difficult it is to play sledge hockey," explained Jack. "It takes a lot of upper body strength to pull yourself along the ice surface. I think the game will be very close, but I would place my bets on the Northern Sliders."

The game is expected to draw a large crowd, especially with the Gold Medal win by Team Canada.

If you would like more information about the Northern Sliders, visit their web site below


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