Queens of the Pond gekroond op Indoor Pond Hockey Classic Ladies Edition! Queens of the Pond gekroond op Indoor Pond Hockey Classic Ladies Edition!

ANTWERP / DEURNE - On Saturday, 28 December 2019, the first edition of the ‘Indoor Pond Hockey Classic Ladies Edition’ took place on the temporary ice rink of Deurne, home of Antwerp Phantoms. The 3-on-3 ice hockey tournament with a high fun factor, exclusively for female ice hockey players, was an initiative of the Women’s Ice Hockey Committee (WIC) of the Royal Belgian Ice Hockey Federation and powered by local ice hockey club Antwerp Phantoms.

This inaugural edition of the ladies tournament follows after seven successful editions of the original 'Indoor Pond Hockey Classic', an annual international tournament with 36 teams that has been organized by Antwerp Phantoms since 2013, in April to end the hockey season on a high note. To do so, the regular hockey rink is transformed into two ‘ponds’ cross-ice to create a genuine pond hockey atmosphere, albeit indoors because the Belgian winters are no longer cold enough to have natural ice.

"We opted for this formula to reach as many female players as possible," explains organizer and WIC member Tina Moons. "I myself participated in the original version of the Indoor Pond Hockey Classic and found it a perfect way to promote ice hockey among our girls and ladies."

Around sixty female players – young and older – from 18 ice hockey and inline hockey clubs signed up for the inaugural event. Two age groups were created, namely U8-U14 and U15-SEN. All players were divided into different teams with roaring names, such as LA Queens, Les Canadiennes and NY Lady Rangers for the girls and Ice Ice Babies, Stickhandling Sisters, Queens of the Ice Age, Hit or Miss, Hattrick Divas and last but not least Stanley Cup Cakes for the women. The youngest girls all received a nice medal for their fine efforts, while the Stickhandling Sisters of the older category crowned themselves ‘Queens of the Pond’ after winning all their games and, according to the tradition of the 'Indoor Pond Hockey Classic' they could don the unique 'Queen of the Pond' jersey.

"I think this tournament is a great idea of the Belgian Federation," said Sandra Wils, player at ice hockey club Charleroi Red Roosters. “I already participated in the original tournament with mainly male players. The exclusive ladies' version is even nicer for us because the level among players is more or less the same, certainly because all club players are distributed among the different teams, also the goalies. That way you also get to know each other better. In the meantime, I hope that there will be more editions, because this certainly benefits the level of the Belgian women's ice hockey game. ”

Goalie Lieselot De Waegeneer of ice hockey club Liedekerke Lions is also a regular participant of the ‘Indoor Pond Hockey Classic’. “Obviously, I couldn't miss out on this Ladies Edition. Like the original event, this Ladies Edition was also a perfectly organized event and lots of fun. However, this type of tournament will raise the skill level of female players as well. ”

Organizer Tina Moons is already very enthusiastic about the result. “This first edition was undoubtedly a hit. Everyone who participated here returns home satisfied. The many short games cross-ice ensure that every player gets the puck in her stick and improves her game insight. It is also a very dynamic tournament for the goalies because the turnarounds are very fast so all action in front of the net changes sides quickly. It is certainly the intention to make this tournament a fixed value in order to give women's ice hockey in Belgium an extra boost,” the former Team Belgium player ended.

During the break, a para-ice hockey exhibition game was held by the Antwerp Phantoms para-ice hockey team.


More photos (by Gregory Lens & Tara Scheers) can be found here

The video (Gregory Lens) can be watched here.


Posted on December 30, 2019 at 20:51 by CP

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