2016 Spring Tier 3 Games on YouTube
Posted by: Graciano Da Ponte on Wed Mar 23rd 2016 9:10am
2016 SPRING SEASON
Posted by: Graciano Da Ponte on Thu Feb 18th 2016 2:35pm
The Young Canadians will finally make the leap to Tier 3 this spring. Coach Da Ponte felt the time was right to move up a level, from Tier 4 at YCBHL to Tier 3 at Downsview Park. With the addition of the Triplets (Randy, Pedro & Chris), along with veteran defenseman, Jamie Parkes, the team is poised to challenge for a playoff spot in their 1st attempt at Tier 3 hockey.
Asked if this would be a permanent move, Da Ponte said "the idea was to go play one season of Tier 3 at the Hangar and then come back to Tier 4 at Rinx for the summer. I wanted to expose the team to a higher level of hockey and see where we stand. Also, after 7 years at Rinx, I felt we needed a break from facing mostly the same teams every season. We were in a bit of a rut. The most recent season (winter 2015/16), we finished first in the regular season by a wide margin. But in the playoff finals, when the other team loaded up with part-timers, we couldn't turn on the "switch" and ended up losing. Yet, in the Winter Classic, we tied the eventual winner & perennial contender D12 and beat a very good, experienced Toronto Bruins team."
Da Ponte continued, "we seem to get up for the challenge when we know that we'll be facing good teams. And in Tier 3, there won't be any gimme games. So, everyone should be ready for a fight each game."
The YC can look forward to an improved competition level & will have to come ready to play every game, if they expect to challenge the incumbent teams for a playoff spot.
2013 SPRING SEASON
Posted by: Graciano Da Ponte on Fri Jan 25th 2013 4:56pm
The Young Canadians '06 will be returning to the rink this spring. The team will be slightly different & a lot younger due to the retirement of veteran Marco Ariganello & the serious knee injury to veteran Hern Azeredo. In their absence, Captain Brian "20" Da Ponte & forward Chris "Ladies Man" Defina will be moving back to handle the defensive responsibilities.
Also, joining the team (part time until the summer) defensively is Coach Da Ponte's former teammate (and Original YC player) Kevin "Slutter" Hutter. Despite his youthful good looks, Hutter has been playing for many years & was part of the original YC team that made it to the Semi-Finals of the Ontario's in 2007.
Up front, returning after a 1 season break is Adam "I'm A Forward Dammit" Casinelli & newlywed Assistant Captain Angelo "Ball & Chain" Verardi. It will be interesting to see how Verardi copes with his responsibilities now that he is married.
New to the team this spring is Shayan "No Nickname" Najafi. After a glowing recommendation by the Verardi's, Da Ponte agreed to bring the young player aboard. After playing on bad teams for so many seasons, it will be interesting to see how he does in the YC line-up.
For 2013, Coach Da Ponte will have a different mentality & implement a more structured strategy. "I believe 2013 is an important year for us. After the disappointment of losing another Ontario's qualifier, then going as a replacement and ultimately embarassing ourselves, my attitude has changed & I hope so has everyone else's. At the end of the day, I run this team & make the decisions. Feedback is welcome, but in the end, I will do what I feel is best. I need the players to focus on playing hockey & leave the managing to me."
The spring season will be a good warm-up for the real test in the summer.
Posted by: Graciano Da Ponte on Wed Sep 05th 2012 1:06pm
After 3 years & 10 seasons, the big teddy bear known as Simon James Kawli, will be retiring from ball hockey. Simon made the decision, after suffering multiple shoulder dislocations throughout the past few seasons. He recently had shoulder surgery to repair the damage and will be without physical acitvity for the next 8-10 months.
Simon joined the Young Canadians in the Fall 2009 season, after several losing seasons playing with different teams. He fit in perfectly and helped the team win it's first playoff championship, tying captain Brian Da Ponte for the playoff scoring lead. In game #2 of the 2011 Summer finals, Simon scored the 1st goal of the shootout, eventually leading to the victory. No one will forget Simon's patented "climbing the boards" celebration after a goal! Simon was an intimidating presence on the floor, but as the team would learn, he was a "Gentle Giant" off the floor.
Simon & his family have hosted the YC party for the last 3 years. The Young Canadians were also part of Simon & (then fiancee) Pamela's big wedding day. Pamela has been a big supporter of Simon's and can be heard cheering for him & the team from the stands, when she can attend.
Simon will ALWAYS be a Young Canadian. It has been a pleasure to coach such an exceptional young man. Over these last few years, I know there have been times where your job has made it difficult for you to play, but you always tried your best to be there. And when you missed a game without informing me, you took your benching without ever complaining. Being a good example to the other players.
At the beginning of the summer, you told me this would be your last season playing hockey. I hoped that you would be able to play the full season, but another shoulder dislocation prevented that. You are always welcome to come & be behind the bench, no permission needed. Thank you for 3 great years! Don't be a stranger.
Summer 2012: Game #15 – Young Canadians Finish in First!
Posted by: Graciano Da Ponte on Wed Aug 01st 2012 3:41pm
After a remarkable turn of events, the Young Canadians have finished the regular season in first place. Thanks to an earlier victory by the Panthers over the Sneaker Pimps, the YC were able to leapfrog the Pimps after beating the Blues 4-0 in their final regular season game. In what seemed like an unlikely scenario, just hours before the game, most YC players felt that the Panthers did not have it in them to beat the Pimps. But with the Panthers shorthanded and clinging to a 3-3 tie, coach Da Ponte’s former teammate, Luciano DiMuccio, sent Kory Wells on a breakaway to seal the victory.
As word spread to the YC players, a sense of excitement developed at the opportunity they had been given. But given what the Blues did in the previous game, nobody knew how the game would play out. Instead of purposely delaying the game, the Blues started on time, but with only 7 players. As usual, the YC had a full line-up. Right from the get-go, there was no question as to who would win this game. The YC scored 2 goals in the first 4:00 minutes and the rest is history.
By virtue of their 1st place finish, the Young Canadians will now face the St. Lawrence Kings (1st place winner of the Special Dry #2 division) on Wednesday, August 1, 2012 @ 9:00 pm (Milliken Mills Arena). These two teams met once this season in a divisional crossover game, with the YC coming out ahead 2-0. But the Kings were easily the toughest opponents the YC met from the other division. Coach Da Ponte will have to find a way to keep his team focused on the game at hand and not let his players’ minds start wandering to London!