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Local U11 Kings rebound from slow start to capture tourney title

The Kings beat the host West Durham Rockmen in a thrilling finale to capture the crown in the first tournament in nearly three years
kings win tourney title in west durham
The RJ Clarke Financial U11 Kings won the tournament title in West Durham on the weekend. The team includes Jaxson Snider, Bennett Hamilton, Jack Schryer, Brock Caven, Benjamin Anderson, Taylor Scheffel, Tristan Crooke, Devin Russell, Henry Whelan, Holden Spurgeon, Tanner Snider, Kolby Thompson, Jimmy Ray Roberts, Keldon Campbell, Ethan Viherjoki, Levon Hayes, Maximus Fryer and Bennett Gliddon. The RJ Clarke Financial Kings coaching staff includes Chad Thompson, Adam Hamilton, Tobias Whelan, trainer Annett Roberts, and team manager Jeanette Hamilton.

The RJ Clarke Financial U11 Kings recently travelled to West Durham for their first tournament in nearly three years. 

The Kings clashed with the No. 12 ranked Gloucester Griffins in their first game of the tournament. The Kings fell behind 1-0 after period one, but clawed their way back and midway through the second had evened the score thanks to goals from Kolby Thompson and Jack Schryer (assisted by Thompson). The Griffins would score late in the second to take a 3-2 lead into the third period. 

Gloucester scored five minutes into the third, doubling their lead before Benjamin Anderson would bring the Kings within a goal with five minutes remaining in the third on a nifty passing play, with assists going to Levon Hayes and Devin Russell. The Griffins would then answer back less than a minute later to regain their two-goal lead. Trailing 5-3 with one minute left, Thompson ripped his second of the game. With the goalie pulled and the Kings attacking, the Griffins goalie would make some key saves to hold on for a final score of 5-4.

Game two would see the Kings play the host West Durham Rockmen. The Kings would draw first blood with Thompson netting the opening goal. The teams would be tied after one in a close back-and-forth battle.

Period two would see the Kings light the goal lamp three times on two goals from Henry Whelan and one from Bennett Gliddon. Bennett Hamilton would carry the Kings momentum into the third by notching his first of the tournament to give the Kings a three-goal lead with 10 minutes left in the third.

With five minutes remaining the Rockmen found another gear while the wheels on the Kings bus fell off, with West Durham scoring three unanswered to stun the Kings in game two. Final score 6-5 Rockmen. Thompson would add a lone assist on one of Whelan’s goals.

In game three, the Kings took on the Nepean Knights in a game they had to win to move on to the semi finals. A loss meant they would battle again that same evening in the quarter finals. The Kings came out flying and never let their foot off the gas pedal. The kids would carry a 5-0 lead into the second period on goals from Hamilton, Devin Russell, Thompson, Gllddon and Hayes. Assists on the goals in the first were Tristan Crooke and Taylor Scheffel. 

The second period was much the same with the Kings striking four minutes in on a goal from Whelan and, a minute later, Schryer. Thompson would round out the scoring in the second with his second of the game on a nice dish from Scheffel for her second assist of the contest. The Knights would get one late in the second and two more in the third while the Kings were held off the score sheet in the third period. Final score, and a berth into the semis, 8-3 for the Kings.

The Kings once again drew the Knights in the semi-finals. The Kings came out flying with a goal nine seconds into the opening frame on a beauty from Hamilton. Goals by Tristan Crooke, assisted by Hayes, and Gliddon would give the the locals a 3-0 lead heading into the second.

Hamilton would snipe his second of the game 30 seconds into the second period, giving the Kings a commanding 4-0 lead. Thompson, Hayes and Schryer, assisted by Keldon Campbell, got in on the action scoring to give the Kings a 7-0 lead heading into the third period. The onslaught would continue with goals from Whelan and Gliddon, with his second of the game.

Jaxson Snider recorded his second shutout of the season as he was solid in net when called upon. Final score 9-0 and the Kings were heading to the finals and a chance at redemption against the hometown West Durham Rockmen.

Heading into the finals the Kings knew that they needed to bring everything they had left after a gruelling, hot weekend of lacrosse. The Kings pounced early with a goal from Schryer two minutes into the first period. Four minutes later, Schryer notched his second of the game giving the Kings a 2-0 lead after one. 

Benjamin Anderson would strike 18 seconds into the second frame, giving the Kings a 3-0 lead. A couple of massive saves by Snider had the Kings in good shape. The Rockmen would sneak one past Snider to cut the lead to 3-1 but within a minute, the speedy Anderson potted his second of the game. The Rockmen would add another before the end of the period with the stage set for the third. 

The Kings from Orillia played outstanding defence in the third period, allowing only one goal and preserved a 4-3 win in the finals. Congratulations to all of the players, coaching staff and parents for making the Kings’ first tournament one to remember!