Saturday 8th February: Bradford U11s 10 – Wild Academy U11s 2 (U11s League North)
The Wild Academy Under 11s braved the strong winds and travelled across the Pennines on Saturday to take on the highly experienced Bradford U11s team, losing 10-2.
The Bradford club has a phenomenal reputation for producing quality junior players that dates back decades and, despite being Under 11s, their team boasted several players who already had over 50 competitive games under their belts.
This is the first season that the Wild Academy have fielded an Under 11s team and the team is a mixture of players completely new to the game, several players who have previously played for other teams and others who have come from the Under 9s team – where they only play short format “cross-ice” hockey. This being the case, it is a bit of a learning curve and the season as a whole is being used as a learning experience for all concerned – but they are making good progress in their debut year!
Bradford took the lead on 2 minutes but Widnes were level just 30 seconds later with a goal from Austin Busby – his first ever competitive goal.
Bradford scored 4 unanswered goals to lead 5 – 1 at the first period break and then added two more goals in the second period, to lead 7 – 1 at the second break.
Three more goals for the hosts put the game well beyond the reach of the fledgling Wild team but Widnes had the last laugh with a second goal of the evening for Austin Busby in the 37th minute.
The Wild Academy Under 11s team are next in action away to Kingston Under 11s in Hull this Sunday, 16th February – 12.45 face off (noon) – and are next at home on Saturday 29th February, when they take on Bradford again at Planet Ice Widnes.
The Wild Academy Under 15s home match against Solihull that had been scheduled for this Saturday 15th February has now been rearranged and will be played on Sunday, 24th May at Planet Ice Widnes – face off 4.15 p.m.
The Wild Academy Under 18s Team are away to Nottingham this Saturday 15th February – face off 5.30 p.m. The Under 13s are away at Billingham on the same day – also 5.30 p.m. face off.
The Wild Academy Under 11s and Under 18s are brand new teams for this season, having been set up with the help of a £4,000 community grant as part of the Tesco supermarket chain’s “Bags of Help” initiative. The addition of these two new teams to the Wild Academy junior development programme means that Widnes now have competitive teams at all five junior age groups – i.e. Under 9s, Under 11s, Under 13s, Under 15s and Under 18s.
The Wild Academy are always keen to attract new players of any age and experience – boys and girls – but prospective newcomers are asked to contact Head Coach Mike Gilbert by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org before attending.
The Junior training sessions run at the following times:
Under 9s and Under 11s: Tuesday 6.15 – 7.15 pm and Thursday 7.15 – 8.15 pm
Under 13s and Under 15s: Tuesday 7.15 – 815 pm and Thursday 7.15 – 8.15 pm
Under 18s: Wednesday 9.00 – 10.15 pm
For anybody new who would like to take up the sport, the Planet Ice rink in Widnes has various “learn to play” courses available for all age groups that run throughout the year and enquiries should be made at the rink, telephone 0151-420-7930.