DAN CEARNS The Standard
SCUGOG: The population of Walleye fish in Lake Scugog is declining at an alarming rate, members of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources told Scugog council at their meeting on Monday, April 27.
“There has been a decline in Walleye across the Southern region basically, but of the six lakes monitored by the Kawartha Lakes fisheries assessment unit, none have seen a decline like Scugog,” Ministry management biologist Ilsa Langis said.
Some of the factors that the ministry mentioned as to why there is a decline include Walleye having to compete with other fish in the lake for habitat, more dominant fish preying on the Walleye, overfishing that happened in the 1980’s and 1990’s and an increase in water quality on Lake Scugog causing Walleye to lose their competitive advantage over other fish.
Walleye are not native to Lake Scugog. They were first released into the lake approximately 50 years ago.
The ministry also outlined two possible solutions to the problem, either close the winter season for Walleye fishing or to implement a year round season closure. Both options would be enforced by conservation officers.
Scugog Mayor Tom Rowett said that it is a shame that the situation has become this bad for Lake Scugog’s walleye population, and lamented the possible negative effect the shortage may have on Scugog’s outdoor tourism industry, as well as the many local residents who fish on the lake.
“It’s a tourist attraction, as well as a lifestyle for many of our residents. I must add that Walleye is my favourite fish to consume, so it is sad to see that this is the solution that Kawartha Lakes fisheries is going to have to go with,” he said.
A public meeting was held at Scugog Memorial library on Tuesday, April 28 regarding the issue. The ministry members said they are going to weigh all options and public input before making any decision. The changes to the regulations will be announced in the Fall.
DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
Jesse Michel added to his trophy case last week, as the Port Perry native celebrated a national Junior ‘B’ championship as part of the Campbell River Storm.
After spending last season playing in Sweden, Michel joined the Storm earlier this season, and was solid between the pipes throughout the campaign, helping the Storm to a trio of championships: a Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League crown, the Cyclone Taylor Cup as provincial champions, and finally, a Keystone Cup as national champs.
In the championship game, contested in Cold Lake, Alberta on Sunday, April 19, the Storm rained on the North Edmonton Red Wings, winning by a margin of 6-3.
The championship game victory allowed the Storm to avenge their only loss in the round robin portion of the tournament, a 5-4 setback against the Red Wings. In their other round robin games, the Storm scored a 6-1 win over the Selkirk Fishermen, a 5-4 win against the Thunder Bay Northern Hawks and 4-2 wins against the host Cold Lake Ice and the Saskatoon Quakers.
The run to the national championship was filled with memorable moments for the 19-year-old Michel, who began playing goalie as a member of his hometown Port Perry Predators, eventually spending time in the ‘AAA’ ranks with the Central Ontario Wolves, Markham Majors and Toronto Red Wings.
In the deciding game of the Storm’s four-game sweep in the VIJHL Finals against the three-time defending champion Victoria Cougars, Michel made a save on a penalty shot late in the third period to help preserve a win for Campbell River.
In the Cyclone Taylor Cup, Michel backstopped the Storm to a 6-5 victory in the provincial championship game against the Kimberley Dynamiters.
Following the win, Michel thanked those who had helped him along the path to his dream season.
“What a great group of guys in Campbell River, couldn't have done it without every single guy on the team, “ Michel said. “Thanks to all of my family, my father, mother, sister and grandma in particular. They have sat in some of the coldest rinks, watched some of my worst games, spent unbelievable amounts of money, traveled countless hours to support me. For this, I cannot thank them enough. The support my family gives me is everything. I dedicate this to my friends who pushed me and helped me."
RYAN BEAN Special to The Standard
It’s that time of year again, and many great spring fishing opportunities are available to the Angler wanting to experience some of the incredible fishing that this part of Ontario has to offer during April and May... from hard fighting Steelhead making their annual runs into the Lake Ontario Tributaries. To the scrappy and tasty Panfish and Walleye that inhabit the Kawartha Lakes.
Anglers that would like to get a head start, or just can’t wait to get out on open water like myself, have plenty of opportunity close by in the surrounding area to experience the great fishing it has to offer, without having to travel far from home.
Below are the most common species that are targeted in spring in the area, and the dates the season opens for them.
Before you hit the water there is a few things to keep in mind. Remember to get your fishing license… In the excitement of getting out for the first time, you may forget that licenses need to be renewed every year. This not having a license can ruin your day of fishing really fast, and send you home with a fine, instead of memories of a great day of fishing. Remember to go over all tackle and make any tune ups as necessary… for instance line sitting in open air for a winter in the garage tends to rot, and when you do hook into your first fish of the season, you will most likely end up with a broken line… line loses its strength after sitting for long periods of time. A quick stop by your local tackle/bait shop before you go out can also help your chances at landing fish… most of them will kindly offer you advice to help and tell you what the other locals are catching fish on and where to find them. Port Perry’s Causeway Bait and Tackle is a good start for the Angler that lives in North Durham.
This column is just an overview on when and where to locate fish and spring. I will get into further details techniques on tackle and locations in future columns. Google is also a great tool to research what you want to know too! Below are the most common gamefish that are target during spring in the area, and dates that the season opens.
The Season for Steelhead opens the last weekend in April, however anywhere below the 401 CN Tracks on Lake Ontario Tributaries you can fish all year. These incredibly hard fighting fish will test the skills of even the best Anglers.
As soon as the ice leaves the river in spring these fish start their journey upstream to spawn in many Lake Ontario Tributaries in the area. A few of my favorite are Bowmanville Creek, Farewell Creek, Wilmot Creek, and Graham Creek. A lot of these creeks are close to each other, so fishing multiple creeks is an option without having to go far. Unlike Salmon, Steelhead return to Lake Ontario after they spawn and are hungry on their way back to the lake! I will get into further techniques on catching these fish in future columns.
Season opens on the second Saturday in May. Walleye are (and I think most will agree) one of the best tasting freshwater fish there is. I am a catch and release fisherman myself, but can’t resist the urge to keep one of these tasty fish when I catch one… one thing to keep in mind is to “harvest your catches” when keeping fish for the dinner table, choose the smaller ones to take home, they taste a lot better! Take a picture and let the big ones go, or Breeders I like to call them… These are the fish that make sure we have many more great years of fishing for future generations. A great time to target Walleye is at dusk, and at sunrise. They are most active then and will travel the shallows in search for baitfish. Unlike other fish they also seem quite eager to bite at night and this can be a great time to target them.
Panfish (includes: Perch, Crappie, Bluegill and sunfish)
The Panfish season is open all year around. They are great fish for the beginner fisherman, and a day on the water with the kids. When you locate one of these fish, chances are you’ll find many more close by! Panfish tend to travel in schools and will readily take most live bait techniques. Locating them can be the most difficult part.. but once located they can provide hours of fun for the whole family. They also taste great too, if you have the patience to clean them. Lake Scugog offers some great panfishing, as well as all Kawartha Lakes, and most waterbody’s in the area.
There are also many events held all season in the area. These are good events for those looking to get into the sport of fishing, and you will learn tons! It’s also a great way to get the whole family involved, and much can be learned to help your future fishing adventures! Uxbridge holds an annual “Huck Finn” youth fishing day, held on Elgin Pond, on Saturday April 25. The species they fish for is Brook Trout. This is a great day out for the kids and can help introduce them to fishing in a positive manner, and get them out of the house, and enjoying the outdoors.
I hope this column has helped in some way. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org I will answer any question you may have, and help your fishing be more enjoyable. In my future columns I will talk more in depth on lures, bait and tackle to use, and some hotspots you can check out for yourselves. Good luck on the water, and tight lines, always.
DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
A dream season for the Uxbridge Atom ‘A’ Stars came to a close last weekend, with the team winning an All-Ontario championship.
The Stars finished the season in grand style, winning the Ontario Hockey Federation championship in Temiskaming, as the Stars shone brightly against the top teams from across the province, downing the Copper Cliff Redmen in the championship game by a score of 6-2.
The Stars represented Uxbridge well over the course of the season, with Cooper Cargill, Aidan Cavanaugh, Aaron Dawson, Blake Edgerton, Owen Ferraro, Eric Henderson, Joshua Henry, Caden Hewitt, Luke Irven, Leo Kent James Lewis, Andrew Morton, Adam Salo, Tyler Thorne, Trent Underwood, Yakob Wensvoort and Joshua Wilson all displaying great skill and determination en route to the All-Ontario crown.
The Stars didn’t lose two games in a row this season, finishing tied for first place in the Lakeshore League regular season standings with Quinte West, with a record of 24-5-1, outscoring the opposition 146-47. As well, in January, the Stars won an International Silver Stick championship in Sarnia.
In the playoffs, the Stars defeated Whitby Blue, Cobourg and Barrie before getting past Essex in a hard-fought OMHA championship round to punch their ticket to the OHF championship.
The Stars faced tough competition at the tournament, squaring off against the champions from the GTHL, NOHA, Alliance, as well as the host team from Temiskaming.
The Stars had a strong opening game, shutting out Burlington 8-0, before skating to a 3-3 tie against Port Credit later in the day.
The following day, Uxbridge notched a 5-2 victory over Temiskaming, and finishing round robin play with a 7-2 drubbing of Copper Cliff to clinch first place heading into the elimination round.
In a rematch with Port Credit in the semi-finals, Uxbridge skated to a 3-1 victory, setting up their championship showdown with Copper Cliff, culminating in a 6-2 victory.
The Uxbridge Atom ‘A’ Stars was sponsored by Foxfire Equestrian and Cartcon General Contracting for the 2014-15 season.
For all of the latest Uxbridge Minor Hockey news, including updates on tryouts for the 2015-16 season, please visit www.uxbridgeminorhockey.ca.
Uxbridge’s Darryl Picov has been selected to carry the torch as part of the Pan Am Games Torch relay when it makes its way through town on Monday, June 8. The Games officially open on July 10, with some event in Durham.
DAN CEARNS The Standard
Darryl Picov is eagerly awaiting his opportunity to carry the torch through Uxbridge for the 2015 Pan Am-Parapan games on Monday, June, 8.
He was first nominated for the honour of carrying the torch by Mayor Gerri Lynn O’Connor and Uxbridge councillors earlier this year.
Picov spends most of his time giving back to his community. He has volunteered for Relay for Life, as well as with; Trinity Church, the Uxbridge-Scugog Animal Shelter and North House, a local charity that provides programs to assist the homeless.
“I’m dedicated to help anybody out there,” Picov said. “I work with special needs and I love helping anybody who needs help in the world.
He is no rookie at being a torch bearer. This is his second time around, the last came when he carried the flame past Canadian Tire in Uxbridge for the 2013 Special Olympics.
Picov must next go through a trial run, where the nominees will be shown how to carry the torch. There is just one thing he asks of the organizers beforehand.
“I’m going to ask them to give me gloves because I don’t want my hands to burn when I carry the torch,” he said.
The torch will also travel through Port Perry, Whitby, and Beaverton on June 8. Each torch bearer will run approximately 200 metres. There will be 3000 torch bearers in total across Ontario.
The relay will begin in Canada on Saturday, May 30 and will travel through 130 communities.
The Pan Am games open on Friday, July 10. The Parapan Am games get underway on Friday, August 7.
DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
Port Perry’s Shauna Kuebeck continued her outstanding 2015 on the mat over the weekend, with a bronze medal showing at the Canadian Juvenile wrestling Championships, in Fredericton, New Brunswick.
In addition to her individual honour, Kuebeck’s performance helped Team Impact claim the juvenile national championship.
Although she came up short, losing 8-7, Kuebeck was the talk of the tournament after nearly upsetting now six-time national champion Keagin Collie of St. Catharines in a thrilling semi-final match. However, she would rebound by dominating the remainder of her matches at the tournament en route to a national bronze medal.
“Shauna’s match with Keagin was one of the highlight matches of the championships which electrified the crowd as no one was expected to come anywhere close to competing against her,” coach Rob Huggins told The Standard.
The national bronze medal is just the latest accolade for Kuebeck, who rebounded from a broken knee last year to win a gold medal at the OFSAA championships for Port Perry H.S. earlier this year. She was unstoppable for the Rebels this past season, winning gold at every tournament she entered with the High School team. Next year, Kuebeck plans to join the wrestling team at McMaster University.
The youth of Port Perry and surrounding areas will have an opportunity to hit the links during May and June as a new Junior Golf League is being launched at Sunnybrae Golf Club.
Starting Thursday, May 7, and going every Thursday night for eight consecutive weeks, the Port Perry Junior Golf League will be in full swing on the Links Course.
"The focus of the Junior Golf League is not to teach technical skills or how to play golf, but to get kids interested in the game of golf. The league will foster a fun "team" environment with a focus on team work, etiquette and some basic rules of golf," said Stephen Laird, Junior Golf League Co-ordinator. "There will be a little bit of teaching involved with special guests, but mostly for the younger kids related to stance, ball position and grip. The two-person scramble format will offer a team feel that will engage junior golfers aged 9 to 13. Participants must have golf course experience and their own set of golf clubs. Players will arrive by 5 p.m. at the clubhouse for dinner and drinks before they go out and walk nine holes with their drawn playing partners. Once they have finished, we will have some putting and chipping contests before we hand out some prizes. The goal is to get the kids interested in golf in a local, affordable, and fun environment."
"Sunnybrae Golf Club is both pleased and excited to be the home of the Port Perry Junior Golf League. We extend a big thank you to Stephen Laird for his commitment, once again, to the Port Perry sporting community," said Dorie McDonald, owner of the local golf course.
Most recreational sport programs are coached by parent volunteers who have a passion for the sport and enjoy helping young people. The Junior Golf League is no different! If you're interested in providing leadership and assistance with our league, here are a few examples of the volunteer positions we are looking to fill: Sign-in Co-ordinator, Team Captain/Assistant, Match monitors/scorers and Marshalls.
Participants can register online by visiting sunnybraegolfclub.com/leagues. The cost for the Junior Golf League is $150 and includes eight rounds, golf shirt, hat, food and beverage before each round, entry into chipping and putting contests and a season ending banquet.
Sponsorship opportunities are also available for the Junior Golf League. If you're interested in supporting this initiative, please contact us! For more information on this exciting opportunity, please visit sunnybraegolfclub.com, e-mail email@example.com, follow @PPJunior_Golf on Twitter or call the Sunnybrae Golf Club at 905-985-2234.
DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
After more than a decade of early morning and late night practices, Jake Durham’s dream of being drafted into the OHL came true over the weekend.
The Hamilton Bulldogs selected the right winger from Port Perry - by way of the Central Ontario Wolves ‘AAA’ program - in the seventh round, 128th overall as the league conducted its annual Priority Selection on Saturday, April 11.
“It took awhile, but it was worth the wait and a great feeling for myself and my family when we saw my name come up,” Durham told The Standard.
Durham is the latest North Durham product to join the organization, which will be relocating from Belleville to Hamilton for next season.
“Hamilton is a great opportunity for me. There are lots of local guys on the team, like Jake Bricknell and other guys from Durham. It means a lot to me, because there is such a strong local connection to that organization. It was a pleasure to be drafted by George Burnett, because he’s local too and has been a great GM and coach in the OHL, with a proven track record of success,” added Durham.
After beginning his minor hockey career in Port Perry, where he was part of an OMHA Novice ‘BB’ finalist squad in 2007, Durham moved to the Central Ontario Wolves in 2009. After being selected he made special mention of the commitments and sacrifices made by his family over the many years of driving throughout the zone, which includes Port Perry, Uxbridge and the City of Kawartha Lakes.
“My parents were the biggest ones to help me get to where I am today. My dad was the coach when I first started playing and they’ve always been there, driving everywhere, especially to those practices in Fenelon Falls and Minden, and paying for it all. I really can’t thank them enough for all that they’ve done.”
Durham will travel with his family to Hamilton this weekend to meet with team staff as well as other prospects selected over the weekend. As well, he will tour the team’s facility and be a guest of the team at the Hamilton Bulldogs’ AHL game.
“It’ll be exciting to see the city and the facilities. I know some of the other guys already and I’m sure they are just as proud to be part of the Bulldogs as I am, and ready to start this next chapter of our careers.”
After previously spending his spring and summer playing rugby and lacrosse, Durham, currently a Grade 10 student at Port Perry High School will be focused on continuing to improve his game over the off season.
“Even though I broke my nose during the last rugby game with the Rebels last year, it was still a lot of fun and something I’ll miss this year. Just like with lacrosse, it was a lot of fun to play something different, because there’s always lessons that cross over. I will still try and get out and play some golf this summer though, because golf has always been a great way for me to clear my head.”
While the challenge of junior hockey is new to Durham, he was given a preview of the next level of competition this past season, when he suited up for four games with the Junior ‘A’ Stouffville Spirit.
“Just because I’ve been drafted doesn’t mean that the hard work is over by any means, if anything it’ll probably get more intense,” Durham explained. “I’m prepared to put in the time to be sure that I’m ready on and off the ice to make sure I can handle myself at the next level, if the opportunity comes.”
As well, Durham says he won’t stray too far from the attributes in his game that have been lauded by scouts.
“I think I have a pretty high compete level, I don’t ever want to get outworked and I’ve always tried to contribute at both ends of the ice.”
Should he not crack the Bulldogs’ line-up, Durham is expected to ply his trade closer to home next season, as he recently signed a letter of commitment to join the Junior ‘A’ Whitby Fury for the 2015-16 season.
“My top priority is Hamilton, but Whitby has done a good job of moving players onto the next level and I’ll be excited to join them in the fall if that is where I end up,” added Durham.
With the buzz and scrutiny of his Minor Midget season now behind him, Durham was able to reflect on the campaign, and offer some advice to other young players.
“The biggest takeaway from having gone through this experience is not to worry about having a bad game, it won’t be the be-all end-all of your career. And, the draft is just a starting point, it’s what you do afterwards that determines how far you can go.”
Special to The Standard
Congratulations to the R.H.Cornish Curling team of Rachel Steele, Nathan Steele, Zachary Harrison, and Ashley Basque. This team represented their school last week at the the OCA Provincial Timbits Elementary School Curling competition held in Gananoque. A total of 64 teams from across the province participated in the event, with the Cornish team finishing the event in fourth place.
The team won their first four games against teams from Dundalk, Parry Sound, Markdale, and Ottawa earning them a spot in the semi-finals Friday afternoon. In a very close game, the team suffered a heartbreaking 6-5 loss to a school from south of Ottawa.
The team was very proud of their performance, had a great time, and met some new curling friends. Combined with winning a curling DEAA banner for their school back in February, this was a pretty exciting season for this group of young curlers.
Carol Jackson Provincial Runner-Up
Teamed with Tina Mazerolle, Port Perry’s Carol Jackson skipped one of the Guelph teams to a second place finish at the unique two-team, OCA Women’s Tankard Provincials this past weekend.
At the Regionals in Milton on Saturday, Guelph’s combined scores earned them victories over Elmira and the Chinguacousy to earn them a spot at the Provincials on Sunday at the Annandale Curling Club in Ajax.
The teams won their first game against the entry from the Royal Kingston Club which earned them a birth in the final against Ilderton. Unfortunately, the Guelph entry came up short in the final, but Jackson and her seven guelph teammates took home the runner-up trophy after and a great run. Congratulations Carol! This is a great way to end yet another successful competitive curling season.
The Uxbridge entry skipped by Sue and Cindy McKnight won their first game at their Regionals in Oshawa, but unfortunately lost their second game to the team from Tam Heather. On the men’s side, Teams Bell from Unionville won their first game, but suffered a tough loss in their second game, which cost them a berth in the Provincial semi-finals, by a combined score of 15-14, after twelve-ends of play.
Uxbridge League Winners Crowned
The extensive league playoff schedules at the Uxbridge Curling Club came to an end last Thursday night, with league team winners being declared.
The club’s mens league champions are Barry Acton, Wayne McArthur, Bruce Hall, and Jason Crowley. Runners-up are Jim Hobbs, David Fleming, Wayne Buttery, and Alan Laver.
The ladies league champions are Elaine Stevenson, Karen Hoyle, Jennifer Johnston, and Marie-Pierre Hughes. The runner-up team was also skipped by Elaine Stevenson, who required a spare for her final game, with Marie Gowans, Marie Lang, and Carol Higgs rounding out the foursome.
The club’s mixed league winners are Rob Houston, Brenda Elford, Tony and Sharon Smith, with special thanks to “super spares” Jack and Kathy Van Koughnet playing front end in the final game. Runners-up are Marg McKnight, Greg Proctor, Don and Karen Williams.
The inaugural team entry league winnings are Howard Harper, Randy Grant, Paul Winkel, and Chris Hughes. In second place was the Jim Bell team with John Bell, Paul Trudgen, and Andrea Bell.
Curling is now done for another season at the Uxbridge Curling Club. After a skating party was held on Saturday, the ice plant has now been turned off. Before everyone heads for the golf course, don’t forget the club’s annual closing banquet will be held this Saturday. Congratulations to all the winners.
DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
Port Perry native Jesse Michel’s decision to head west this hockey season continued to pay off this week, as he helped the Campbell River Storm raise the Cyclone Taylor Cup as the 2014-15 British Columbia provincial Junior ‘B’ champions.
The Storm will now head to Cold Lake, Alberta to compete for the Keystone Cup, a de facto national championship, which draws Junior ‘B’ teams from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Northern Ontario.
Campbell River is just the latest stop in a whirlwind junior hockey career for the 19-year-old product of the Port Perry Predators. Last season, Michel played in Sweden with Sollentuna HC. In seventeen games he recorded a goals against average of 3.52 and a save percentage of .878.
“Sweden seems to be producing some of the best goalies, so I decided to try and learn directly from the source. It was an awesome experience and I definitely think that it made me a better player on and off the ice. The entire system over there is much more geared towards development, and it really paid off for me,” Michel told The Standard.
The Swedish influence on his style of goaltending has carried over to this side of the Atlantic this season.
“I play a system called five-point goaltending which I created with the help of Stefan Perrson, the goalie coach for Sweden’s Olympic team. He also coached Eddie Lack and Viktor Fasth, and he’s been a big influence on my game.”
After beginning this season with the Ottawa Candiens Junior ‘B’ team, Michel was dealt to Campbell River in November, and made an immediate impact, compiling a 13-3 record, with two shutouts to go along with a sparkling 2.37 Goals Against Average.
In the playoffs, Michel has continued his sensational play between the pipes, including a dazzling save on a penalty shot late in the third period of Game 4 of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League Finals, with the Storm eventually winning by a score of 3-2 to sweep the Victoria Cougars.
“I love Campbell River, the fans have been amazing and the town has been so supportive. Hopefully we can bring them one more championship before the year is over,” Michel said.
The Storm begin their quest for the Keystone Cup on Thursday, April 16, and local fans can follow along with all of the action from the tournament on-line at www.keystonecup.ca.