U18 Rebels win York-Simcoe championship

March 29, 2023   ·   0 Comments

Another week and another championship for King Township Minor Hockey.
It was an exciting night last Wednesday at the Nobleton arena. In front of a packed house (standing room only), the U18 A Rebels continued their solid play to win the YSMHL championship. With a core of players in tact since they were nine years old, the 2005 age group persevered to win the title. It was a long road to get here, however, being able to go out on top in their last year of minor hockey was truly a sight for parents and friends.
The team chemistry, with the guidance of head coach John Apollinaro and assistant coach Connor Thomas, Mike Baldessara and team manager Kim Baldessara was the best in years. They helped the team capitalize and reach their potential. To see some of these 17-year-old boys continue to improve their skill was rewarding.
None of this was possible without the amazing 2006 born players that helped take the team to another level. This is where the amalgamation of King Township hockey pays off. Players from Schomberg, Nobleton, Pottageville, Snowball, King City, Bond Head and Caledon had their finger prints all over the trophy.
The U18 team started to take off as the playoffs were marching on. An opening round robin 4-4 tie to East Gwillimbury put some urgency into the team and they didn’t look back. A 2-0 win over TNT, 4-1 win over Bradford and 9-0 win over Stouffville closed out round robin play.
Next up was a looming quarter-final game against Richmond Hill. This game would give U18 an automatic entry into the OMHA playdown tournament as well keep the playoff run going. A convincing 5-1 win in front of a Friday evening Trisan Center crowd was convincing and the determination was ever apparent for the team.
Semi-final match-up was against the Markham Waxers and the result was a 1-0 win in a low scoring game. It would not have been possible if it wasn’t for goalie Christopher Brunato’s unbelievable saves which again showed what a true team effort is. Who would have thought a first period short handed goal by Caleb Kokelj could stand up.
The championship game was against the Georgina Blaze. U18 jumped out quickly to a 1-0 lead which had Nobleton arena buzzing however Georgina struck back quickly with two goals taking a 2-1 lead. It was now time for this U18 team to dig in. The team was pushing hard in the second period which paid off – three goals were scored to take a convincing lead. The team was powered by yet another hat trick by forward Keaton Walsh and the “shut down” team defence lead the rest of way to victory. Other goals were scored by Caleb Kokelj and Jack Caravaggio respectively. The third period was scoreless with U18 playing defensive hockey lead by team captain Luke Bottero to close the game out. With the win, U18 obtains great positioning in March 31st OMHA provincial championship playdowns. The team is excited and ready for the next job.
KTMH also took the opportunity to present head coach John Apollinaro with Rep Hockey coach of the year. A very well deserved accomplishment for the success the team had this season so far. Shout outs go to assistant coaches Mike Baldessara, Connor Thomas and team trainer Mark Bottero.
Congratulations to Adam Baldessara, James Watt, Luke Bottero, Jawad El Sayad Nicolas Tomada, Jonathan Melilo, Tristan Torres, Caleb Kokelj, Sean Adams, Stephen Voorn, Christopher Brunato, Nathan Evangelista, Nathan Watt, Grady Duggan, Brody Meyer, Andrew Voorn, Frankie Femia, Jack Caravaggio, Keaton Walsh.



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