By Josh Howald
They say you never forget your first.
Host team goaltender Percy Weber makes a big stop on Tyler Tilker with some help from defenceman Kyle Pennock during the championship game of the Independent's Weekend Orangey in Formosa. Weber was good, but Tilker's team squeezed out a narrow 4-3 win to take home a $500 cash prize. (Katie Rock for The Independent)
Without question, the Kincardine Independent’s 4-on-4 ball hockey tournament in Formosa, ON, was a success. The inaugural tournament, a fundraiser for the Kincardine District Secondary School boys hockey team, had plenty of memorable moments and some of the best ball hockey you can find in these parts.
“That was fun,” said the tournament’s most valuable player, goaltender Chris Montag.
“It was hot – but fun. Was a great idea, a great tournament.”
Montag led his team, the “Honey Nut Chelios”, to the inaugural Orangey victory, putting on an impressive goaltending display to upset the Listowel area “Warpigs” in the semi-finals and the host team in the championship game. His squad won $500 in cash by beating the hosts in the main event Saturday night under the lights of the outdoor arena pad in Formosa – the only outdoor faciliity in the region.
Teams from Kincardine, Kincardine, Lucknow, Walkerton and Hanover took part in the licensed event, which also featured an elimination shootout on Friday night and a Saturday night Showcase of Skill, judged by local celebrities. A total of 31 games were played and players travelled from as far away as Huntsville and Peterborough to be a part of fun.
Honey Nut Chelios co-captains Tyler Tilker of Walkerton and Formosa native Paul Hauck became the first to drink from the Indy5 Cup – dubbed in honour of the event’s two major sponsors – the Kincardine Independent and backsideFIVE – a lifestyle brand created in Texas by Kincardine native Darren Smegal.
The clothing line proved to be the hit of the tournament, along with authentic NHL jerseys. Hauck won a Steve Yzerman Detroit Red Wings throwback jersey for winning Friday night’s shootout, while Curt Robinson left with an LA Kings Drew Doughty sweater for his part of the skills showcase.
Andy Cline in Saturday night's Skills Showcase, which featured celebrity judges, breakaways, shots from a rooftop, a talented dog named Daisy and a Drew Doughty jersey on the line.
Another highlight of the weekend was The Independent’s own resident dog, Daisy Howald, placing third in the Saturday night Showcase of Skill – advancing to the final round, leaving her human opponents behind.
Proceeds from the tournament will go to the Formosa Lions Club and the Kincardine District Secondary School boys hockey team. The OFSAA champions were well-represented at the tournament as well, with two teams of Kincardine teenagers taking part.
“I’m quite pleased with the way everything went at the first ever Orangey,” said Andy Cline, who helped organize the event with Kincardine’s Easton Battler and The Independent’s Josh Howald.
“We have booked the Formosa outdoor community complex for the July 12 weekend next summer, and fully expect the second annual Orangey to be bigger and even better.”