It’s a big day for Clippers

Joe MacIntyre
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Summerside football team playing in its first Potato Bowl

The Summerside Clippers and Souris Wildcats tangle in the P.E.I. Tackle Football League’s championship game at UPEI on Saturday afternoon.

This is the Clippers’ first trip to the Potato Bowl in this, their sixth year of existence.

Most will not give them much of a chance against the heavily-favoured Wildcats, who have won the last four Potato Bowls.

It is kind of a David-vs.-Goliath scenario, but the Clippers also realize that the Wildcats can be beaten. Souris’ only loss of the regular season was to Cornwall, the team the Clippers defeated in the semifinals.

Summerside finished with three wins and three losses on the season. Knowing that Cornwall has defeated Souris shows that Summerside at least has a chance, and one never knows what a supreme effort by the Clippers will result in.

One can bet that Clippers head coach and former B.C. Lion Marc Reid and his capable assistants, Tee Jay Foley and Jeremy Hern, will have their players up for the challenge.

It would be great for the local program if the Clippers could pull out a win. Victory is always that much sweeter when you knock off the big boys.

Good luck to both the Wildcats and Clippers.   

 

Connor McGuire

Today is a big day for Connor McGuire of Summerside.

The son of Paul and Sandy Carson-McGuire will take part in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) cross-country championships at Western University in London, Ont. He will be representing the Atlantic region as a part of the St. Francis Xavier X-Men cross-country team.

The fourth-year science student recently won the gold medal at the Subway Atlantic University Sport cross-country championships in Halifax. He was named the Atlantic conference's cross-country athlete of the year for the second straight year.

McGuire has had a lot of success in the running game, but a national title would be the pinnacle.    

 

Summerside Storm

An interesting article entitled P.E.I.'s Unlikely Hotbed for Pro Basketball appeared in the Globe and Mail on Nov. 2.

Reporter Jane Taber talks to the Storm's Al Stewart about the culture shock of coming from Chicago to small-town P.E.I., a place he never heard of before arriving last year.

The article goes on to explain how pro ball got started here, and the commitment from Storm owners Duncan Shaw and Darren MacKay to bring it here. These guys laid down $100,000 for a franchise, and have an operating budget in the $700,000 per-year range, which is a big commitment in itself.

Each team has a salary cap of $150,000, with players making a minimum of $1,600 per month. A premier player has a maximum monthly salary of $4,500.

When asked how much the team lost in the first year, Shaw was quick to answer, "too much.”

That is why this is such a critical year for the Storm and the rest of the league. The whole league needs to attract a lot of support. The Storm had the second-best attendance in the league last year, and if they lost money then one would think that most  teams would have similar numbers.

Strong ownership will be a key to success for the league, and the Storm has that. Although it is only in Week 2 of the regular season, it does look like the Storm has a very good team.

A very good team will attract very good support, which will be so important as this league goes forward. Owners’ pockets are only so deep, and at some point each owner will want to put at least as much money in their pocket as they take out.

 

Dave Gregory

Dave Gregory, a former Summerside resident, died suddenly last week in Charlottetown.

Those who knew Dave knew him as a kind and caring man, who was always willing to lend a helping hand. He was a longtime volunteer for many sporting events in Summerside, and served as president of the very successful Summerside Men's Softball League back in the 1980s and ‘90s for a number of years.

For years he ran the former Hymies Gulf (now Ultramar) service station on Water St., where he always had time for a quick chat that was usually sports related. He was always very appreciative of your business, and never forgot to say, “thank you.”  

Simply put, it was a pleasure to have known him. I know I join with many from the local area in passing on condolences to his wife Cathy and the Gregory and MacDonald families. Dave Gregory will be missed.

Have a great week!

 

Joe MacIntyre is a Summerside resident. His column appears every Saturday. Comments and suggestions can be sent to j-mac@eastlink.ca.

 

 

Organizations: Wildcats, Western University, Subway Atlantic University Sport Globe and Mail Softball League Ultramar

Geographic location: Summerside, London, Ont., Halifax Chicago Charlottetown

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