Four Salmon Arm hockey players picked for BC Cup

Success: Sarah Botter and Darien Head

Salmon Arm has been making its mark during the selection process for BC Cup hockey.

Four Salmon Arm hockey players have been noticed and chosen to play in the BC Cup.

Three Salmon Arm girls will be on the U18 Team Okanagan  when it participates in the BC Cup to be held in Salmon Arm April 27 to May 1. The BC Cup is the second stage in the selection process to play for Team BC.

They are Maggie Shykula-Ross, Sarah Botter and Alexa Ranahan.

Chosen to represent the Okanagan zone on the U16 Team Okanagan is Darien Head.

Shykula-Ross is 17 years old and a Grade 11 honour-roll student at Salmon Arm Secondary. She was chosen to take part in the BC Cup last year and advanced to the  final stage of the selection process where she was ranked as one of the top 50 female midget players in the province. This past season she played for the Thompson Okanagan Rockets Midget Female AAA team. Based out of Kelowna, the Rockets had a successful season, placing first in the league and winning the provincial title in March. The Rockets also won the MLK Invitational Women’s hockey tournament in San Jose in January and participated at tournaments in Notre Dame, Sask. and the Mac’s tournament in Calgary. Also playing on the Rockets from Salmon Arm were Janessa Jenkins and Shylah Gibb. This is the second provincial title for Shykula-Ross in three years.

In 2009 she was a part of the first female team to win a provincial banner in Salmon Arm as part of the Salmon Arm Midget Female Tier 1 Silvertips. She loves hockey and also plays for the senior girls soccer team at Salmon Arm Secondary. She has one year left at the midget level and hopes to receive a scholarship to pursue hockey at the university level.

Salmon Arm’s Sarah Botter also competed April 2 and 3 in Clearwater in the zone camp for females born in 1994 and 1995.

She was among the top 20 players from the zone camp to advance to the Female U18 BC Cup in Salmon Arm.

The top 46 players from the BC Cup will advance to the provincial camp, which will also be held in Salmon Arm in late May.

Botter is 16 and a Grade 10 honour-roll student at SAS. Sarah is the youngest of five children who have also all played hockey. She has played since she was five.

She plays as a forward for the Salmon Arm Midget Tier 1 Female Silvertips.

During her spare time she enjoys refereeing. She recently had the privilege of refereeing the PeeWee Tier 1 Provincials in Clearwater. After being evaluated during the round-robin games, she was selected to referee the championship game.

She also plays soccer during the spring months.

Salmon Arm’s Alexa Ranahan plays defence for the Okanagan Hockey Academy out of Penticton.

Ranahan, Shykula-Ross and Botter all played together for the Salmon Arm Midget A Silvertips in 2009.

Ranahan’s head coach at the academy,   Rebecca Russell, is pleased with her selection.

“We are very proud of Alexa and the gains she has made as a student athlete this year. She is what a student athlete should be. Her work ethic both on and off the ice is outstanding, and whatever Alexa achieves, will truly be deserved,” wrote Russell in an email to the Observer. “She is still a very young kid and we believe her future is extremely bright. Both myself and Gina, my assistant coach, are very proud and wish her and our five other OHA girls attending this BC hockey camp, the best of luck.”

On April 1 – 3, Salmon Arm hosted the U16 Okanagan Zone camp where about 105 boys born in 1996 competed for 40 spots.

More than 600 players province-wide tried out for their respective zones with only 200 making the cut.

Darien Head, a defenceman and captain of the Salmon Arm Bantam Silvertips, was one of those chosen to represent the Okanagan Zone in the 2011 U16 BC Cup being held in Kamloops April 28 to May 1.

This tournament offers B.C.’s top 15-year-old players a chance to compete with the best players in their age group from across the province.

Head started playing hockey at the age of four.

All of his minor hockey has been played in Salmon Arm and he is currently a Grade 9 student at the Jackson campus of Salmon Arm Secondary.



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