Young Nitros embracing growth of hockey on North Shore

Dave Kearsey
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Ian Morgan hopes he gets to play North Shore Nitros hockey for the balance of his youth.

The 13-year-old son of Adam and Paula Morgan is one of the young athletes on the north shore of the Bay of Islands who has embraced the growth of the minor program at Marshall-Moores Arena.

The North Shore Nitros, under the guidance of co-ordinator Perry Sheppard and the Cox’s Cove recreation committee, wrapped up a banner season with a banquet at the community hall with registraton hitting 67 players for the 2013-14 season. Ian Morgan enjoyed playing the game all winter and hopes it can only grow because it provides him with a lot of fun and exercise with his friends.

“It’s nice that we are able to play and have some fun,” Morgan said. “We’re growing and we’re getting better. More people are joining. It was a good year and next year will hopefully be as good if not better.”

Morgan was given the nod as the most improved player in the boys 11-16 age group for the past season.

“I wasn’t really expecting it, but when he called my name it felt good to know I was getting better and I’m doing good,” he said. “I like to thank Perry (Sheppard) for putting all of his time and effort into giving us time on the ice and it was good playing with my team.”

He has no doubt he will be back for another season, but he encourages other boys and girls in the area to give it a shot next year so it can only be a better experience for everybody involved.

“Get even more players and start getting more games against each other people, and hopefully we’ll improve,” he said.

Annie Pennell, eight-year-old daughter of Clarence and Tina Pennell,  got her first taste of minor hockey this year, taking her interest from general skating at the Marshall-Moores Arena to donning the hockey gear among some of her friends.

It’s something that she don’t regret because she had a lot of fun and has a few more friends because of her participation.

“I joined hockey because I wanted to learn how to skate better and skate backwards,”Pennell said. “My first year of hockey was good. I liked my coach (Perry Sheppard) and I liked all the games we had.”

 Her commitment and effort for her rookie season didn’t go without notice as she won the most dedicated player award for the female group.

“I will never forget about it,” she said of hearing her name announced as the winner. “I was happy because I always go to hockey to have a lot of fun.”

She was all smiles when she was presented with a five-pound World’s Finest Chocolate bar for being the top fundraiser with 120 bars sold as the recreation committee tried to keep up with the costs of delivering the program to the youth with different initiatives throughout the year. For the record, she only missed hockey twice, once because she was too ill to play and the other time she was out of town.

She’s not sure what to do with her free time now that the season has come to a close.

“I didn’t really want the season to go because it was fun learning how to skate and play hockey,” she said.


2013-14 North Shore Nitros individual award winners:

5 -10 Male

Most Sportsmanlike — Dominic Murrin

Most Improved — Avery Blanchard

Most Dedicated  — Kurtis Murrin      


11-16 Male

Most Sportsmanlike — Kristopher Loder

Most Improved — Ian Morgan

Most Dedicated — Curtis White


5-14 Female

Most Sportsmanlike — Amie Loder

Most Improved — Sarah Curtis

Most Dedicated — Annie Pennell

Organizations: Marshall-Moores Arena.The North Shore Nitros, Cove recreation committee

Geographic location: North Shore, Bay of Islands

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