They’re three cool dudes, ice cold.
That is because they are hockey players on Sir Oliver Mowat C.I.’s senior boys’ hockey team which has been consistently ranked in the top ten in Toronto all season. A big part of the mean Mowat Gaelsis their top line.
Weighing in at a combined 480 pounds is Ryan Carr playing centre with Matt Swift and Blake Ertel keeping it chilly on the wings.
“I think us three are the main playmakers on the team. We are the main source of offence and we score a lot of goals,” said Ertel.
Even though he is only 16 years old and playing on the senior team for the first year, he has already made a big difference, literally. Ertel is a giant compared to his line mates, measuring 6 feet 4 inches, 195 pounds.
He has scored seven goals and five assists already this year and he is a player to watch as he develops. He is so good that last year he was drafted for the OHL Niagara Ice Dogs, but didn’t end up making the final cut. Still, he remains modest.
“We have a great chemistry in the dressing room,” said Ertel. “I really think that is the major thing that separates us from most other teams.”
This is Matt Swift’s second year on the team and though his skates are sturdy, his modesty sometimes slips. It must be difficult to maintain a gentlemanly demeanour when playing for a team that is so consistently excellent.
He is 17 years old and has accumulated seven goals and seven assists so far. Sometimes, it just isn’t that much of a challenge for him when playing against weaker opponents.
“Some of the teams we play, it’s not really a game at all. They are all house league guys and we have quite a few AAA players,” said Swift.
Unfortunately, not every team is going to be a pushover.
The boys were forced to come to terms with this unpleasant fact in their recent 3-2 loss to Birchmount Park C.I., the local rivals of the Gaels. Mowat was rated third in the city by the Toronto Star before the loss, but have since dropped to number eight, one spot below Birchmount Park.
Ryan Carr is a three year veteran of the Mowat team and certainly didn’t have anything nice to say about Birchmount Park.
“Birchmount and us just don’t get along,” said 18-year-old Carr. “They are cocky and they like to run their mouths.”
Despite being currently rated below their rivals, Carr is confident Mowat will come out on top. He has put away 10 goals and six assists himself but doesn’t think scoring a lot of goals is going to be enough this year.
He says the team’s focus on defensive play is going to end up giving them the advantage.
“We have a really great defensive strategy,” said Carr. “That is something that is different than what other teams are doing. Last year we were more a of running-down-the-ice offence, now we are a shut-down defence.”
Swift agrees, crediting their success to their stellar defencemen and goalie.
“We like to get up two or three goals and then just sit on it,” said Swift. “We’ve got some good offensive defencemen and we also got a great goalie. He really keeps us in the games.”
Watch out for some real action when Mowat goes looking for redemption against Birchmount Park on Jan. 13, at Scarborough Centennial Arena.