WOMEN'S HOOPS: The Toronto Stealth semi-pro team began its maiden season in the Women's Blue-Chip Basketball League on Saturday ... suffice to say, Toronto Star hoops chronicler Doug Smith came away impressed:
"It was a rather interesting, and somewhat surprising to me, night at Ryerson on Saturday. I was fully impressed by the crowd – more than 100 doesn’t sound like much but I’ve been at national team events the past without audiences that big and it was a Saturday night of a long weekend for a team no one’s heard of at a gym that you need a GPS to find.The Stealth's CIS contingent includes former Brock star Jodie Ebeling, a five-time OUA all-star who was once invited to a WNBA free-agent camp. Three current or former U of T posts, Laila Bellony, Tara Kinnear and Nicki Schutz, are also on the team, along with guard Kim Lee (Waterloo) and forwards Kerri Jilesen (Laurier) and Ashley Stephen (St. FX).
"The calibre of play wasn't the greatest but you have to figure it's only going to get better and that’s the most important thing. There needs to be places for women – and men – to develop their skills during or after their college careers and this is a perfect opportunity.
"Minor league sports, particularly minor league basketball is this (Toronto) market, is a dicey proposition at best and who knows how long the Stealth will actually last. But I think it deserves a chance, and it deserves some support; I presume I'll be back if time permits and if I had a young daughter interested in the game, I'd take her to see the Stealth play some night.
"You should, too."
The Stealth's home games are at Kerr Hall on the Ryerson campus, all on Saturday night at 7 p.m. Their home games include:
- May 30 vs. Flint
- June 6 vs. Detroit
- June 27 vs. Detroit
- July 18 vs. Montreal
It would be remiss to not share a comment from cisblog.ca on a post about Shelley Coolidge leaving the University of Ottawa to lead the Carleton Ravens women's hockey team.
"This is only the beginning as coaches realize the wide difference in ability, social skills and production between the 2 athletic directors and commitment to sport at the 2 universities."FOOTBALL
- The Paper of Record had a nice feature on former Ottawa Gee-Gees footballer Trevor Monaghan's work with Cree youth in Chisasabi, Que., near James Bay.
"This is the second year Monaghan has brought kids from Chisasabi. Last year, 17 came made the two-day bus ride. This year, 25 have achieved the school attendance level required to come to camp.Monaghan's bio says he played for the Gee-Gees from 1997-99 and again in 2001. One wishes him all the best in his efforts.
Monaghan is planning to start a summer six-on-six tackle program in Chisasabi, a community that doesn't yet have a dedicated football field.
The camp in Ottawa is spring training for players, whom he hopes will bring their new enthusiasm back to other teens in Chisasabi."
- The indispensable Capital Region Football Blog has an update on the collegiate destination if some local gridders: Guard James Lindsay (Nepean HS/Ottawa Myers Riders) and defensive tackle James Young (Gloucester/Cumberland Panthers) are headed to Acadia; linebacker Kyle Norris (South Carleton High School/Myers) is going to Saint Mary's
Semi-pro league gives women's hoops a boost (Doug Smith, Toronto Star, May 17)