(ISN) – Team BC’s ringette captain Angela Cichos has never experienced anything like the 2015 Canada Winter Games.
The 18-year-old Port Coquitlam player has competed in countless high-stakes tournaments and difficult games but has never felt the same level of support that took place over the course of the week’s competition.
“It was amazing and I loved it,” she said. “The first couple of days got us really pumped and excited. First with the Team BC pep rally and then the opening ceremonies. And then all the support we got on the ice topped it all off.”
The team competed in Prince George’s coliseum, which is located directly behind the athletes’ village.
“That part was really cool,” she said. “We were so close to the hotel that lots of other teams came out to watch and to cheer. And I have to say, our parents and family members were probably the loudest and craziest people there – it was great.”
The tournament results didn’t go the way Cichos and her team wanted – they ended up sixth overall – but that doesn’t take anything away from the experience.
“I think we had a really solid tournament. There were some very tough games and we had our ups and downs. I’m proud of my team. We did a really good job of never quitting. There were a lot of times when the other team would score a quick goal and we would come right back. We played right to the buzzer and we never gave up.”
The team is comprised of athletes from across the province and lots of pre-Games training contributed to the team’s great experience. They felt comfortable playing together and have developed close relationships through the experience.
The highlight of the tournament for Cichos came when she scored the game-winning overtime goal against Saskatchewan.
“It’s also been very cool to play for our coaches – I had never played for them before and I learned a lot. They were always making decisions with the team in mind and they were behind us 100 per cent, but they were also tough on us when they needed to be.”
Cichos won’t be eligible for another Canada Winter Games, making this event even more meaningful. She plans to continue her ringette career with the National Ringette League.