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St. Bon’s wins Mount Pearl invitational

St. Bonaventure's College recently won the Mount Pearl Senior High invitational tournament.
St. Bonaventure’s College recently won the Mount Pearl Senior High invitational tournament.

Six teams recently took to the court at the third annual Mount Pearl Senior High invitational tournament.

Mount Pearl Senior High, Holy Heart High School, Holy Spirit High School, Gonzaga High School and St. Bonaventure’s College participated in the one-day tournament held Dec. 8.

This year, the tournament format was changed to four-on-four to reflect the version of ultimate recently adopted as a Foundation Sport by School Sports Newfoundland and Labrador (SSNL). This version of ultimate is fast-paced and provides equal playing time for male and female players with a 2:2 ratio.

“Players really seemed to enjoy this change!” said Aaron Power, tournament organizer and coach of the Mount Pearl Senior High squad. “Play was very competitive and quick-paced with all games in the round robin being close and exciting games.”

The gold medal game saw St. Bon’s take on Holy Heart in a competitive and highly-spirited match. St. Bon’s won the game 14-9.

Ultimate named Foundation Sport by School Sports NL

Students and coaches at the 2018 senior high school provincial tournament.

Students and coaches at the 2018 senior high school provincial tournament.

We’re excited to announce that ultimate has been named a Foundation Sport by School Sports Newfoundland and Labrador!

School Sports NL is a provincial organization working to ensure students develop healthy living habits and experience the life-long benefits of participation through physical activity and sport. In the 2017-2018 school year, School Sports NL organized over 200 regional and 45 provincial tournaments. The organization offers programs in 10 Official Sports and six Foundation Sports for male and female student athletes.

“This is exciting news for the growth of ultimate in the province,” says Nick House, UNL president. “Being named a Foundation Sport with School Sports NL will expose kids all over the province to ultimate and allow us to support them with funding, equipment, training and resources. It’s a great step towards making ultimate a truly provincial sport.”

“This is exciting news for the growth of ultimate in the province.” – Nick House

Road to varsity sports

Foundation Sport is the introductory phase of any sport wishing to become part of School Sports NL’s varsity program. Foundation Sport status helps develop interest and skills on a regional basis so that when enough participation is generated, it can become an Official Sport with the organization.

“School Sports NL encourages diversity in sport and promotes balanced athletic development for student athletes,” says Sean Connolly, the organization’s varsity co-ordinator. “We’re happy to welcome ultimate as a Foundation Sport and hope to see it reach Official Sport status in the near future.”

The version of ultimate being introduced to schools will see co-ed teams of four face off against each other in one of ultimate’s most fast-paced iterations.

Accessible sport for rural schools

“Ultimate is a co-ed sport and that makes it especially accessible to rural schools with small populations,” says Mr. House. “Using the four-on-four version of the game means that small schools also have a greater number of students to form teams with, making it easier for them to field teams in regional and provincial competitions.”

As part of the Foundation Program, School Sports NL will oversee and promote regional tournaments for students. Ultimate NL will provide coaching resources, equipment and other support. Teams and individuals may also apply for funding to assist with travel costs associated with participating in school tournaments.

Participation in the School Sports NL Varsity Program exceeds 7,000 student athletes and over 500 volunteer teacher-coaches across the province.

Over 800 people play ultimate each year in adult and school leagues in the St. John’s area.

Teachers and coaches interested in introducing ultimate to students may find more information here.