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Sunday, December 4, 2016

FOR THE RECORD: ARCTIC WINTER GAMES 2016 FUTSAL RESULTS - INTERMEDIATE FEMALE

The Futsal competition at the 2016 Arctic Winter Games concluded with the final of the Intermediate Female competition, which saw holders Sápmi - who represent the Sami people of northern Scandinavia and who were taking part in their sole Futsal competition - take on Yukon. The gold Ulu (named after the ulu, a traditional cutting implement used by Inuit, Indians and Aleut across the Arctic) was first played for in 2004 in Wood Buffalo, Alberta, and was won by Alaska. Since Sápmi first entered the competition in 2008, they have only lost two matches, the last being the 2010 final when they lost to Alaska in the western Albertan city of Grande Prairie.

There was just the one scoreless draw in the 2016 tournament (in fact, it was the sole scoreless draw across the entire Futsal gathering), when Alaska and the Northwest Territories met in the group stage, but there were a number of chances for both teams, and the NWT's Tamelka Steinwand came closest to breaking the deadlock when her shot hit the post late on in the second half.

NWT then collapsed in their following group game, when they lost 10:0 to holders Sápmi, for whom Sofie Sørensen and Kristin Hamnvik scored hat-tricks. Sápmi then went on to thrash Alaska 5:0 in their next match, with Sørensen netting another four goals. Sápmi went on to win all of their group games in convincing fashion, apart from a nine-goal thriller against Yukon. (Both teams had already qualified for the semi-finals by this time.) The Canadians scored in the first minute before Sápmi scored twice in twenty seconds in the fifth minute. It was 3:2 at half-time, and Sápmi always had their noses in front in the second half, but Yukon kept coming back at them, which potentially bode well for an exciting final - if both teams made it that far.

They both had to first get through their semi-finals, which they did with the mimimum of fuss: Sápmi's Sofie Sørensen scoring all of her side's goals in a 4:0 win over Greenland, though Yukon were made to work a little harder against the Northwest Territories in their match, which they won by 3 goals to 1. Greenland went on to win the third-place play-off 4:2 against NWT, with Nivi Mathiassen and Olina Kristiansen both scoring twice in a hard-fought encounter. Oddly, the Northwest Territories had scored just one goal during the group phase, but quadrupled their tally in the knockout and play-off stages.

So, all eyes were on the final, which brought the curtain down on the Futsal event at the Arctic Winter Games as a whole, a game which Sápmi were expected to win, and win well. They had been scoring goals with abandon, especially Sørensen, who had scored at least a hat-trick in every game so far. Yukon, though, had other ideas. They were not a team which scored bucketfuls of goals, but they did possess a determined defence and a tenacious attitude, exemplified by the likes of Judith "Mikaela" Ponsioen, who had scored in every game in the tournament up to the final, Jamie-Joe Hudson and Thea Carey.

In spite of Sápmi dominating possession, both goalkeepers were rarely tested bue to some excellent defending (and a willingness to counter-attack) from their team-mates, but when they were, they excelled, especially Yukon's diminutive shot-stopper Isabel Magsucang, who was also quick to put her team back on the attack with her basketball-style throw-outs. One to watch for the future. However, she was powerless to stop Sápmi's Kristin Hamnvik from stealing in to tap home from close range to score the winner half-way through the second half. Both defences deserve praise, especially that of Yukon, who dealt admirably with almost everything thrown at them.

Although Sørensen was comparatively subdued during the final, she had more than proved her worth to the team throughout the tournament, as had Hamnvik, goalkeeper Ann-Heidi Utsi and team members of the calibre of Jenny Marie Slettli. It was a real team effort and a deserved victory for the Scandinavians, who continued their domination of the competition. Many of the Sápmi team, such as Erika Wingstad and Elsa Tannerdal will still be eligible to play at the next edition of the Arctic Winter Games in Fort Smith/Hay River in 2018; will they continue their reign or will a new name appear on the honours-list?


RESULTS

GROUP STAGE

07/03/16 Greenland 6:3 Yukon (Mathiassen (3), Simonsen (2), Kristiansen; Ponsioen, McLeish, Carey)
07/03/16 Alaska 0:0 Northwest Territories
07/03/16 Alaska 0:2 Yukon (Joe-Hudson, Ponsioen)
07/03/16 Northwest Territories 0:10 Sápmi (Hamnvik (3), Sørensen (3), Edvardsen (2), Wingstad, Tannerdal)
08/03/16 Alaska 3:3 Greenland (Schellekens (2), Hepburn; Kristiansen (3))
08/03/16 Greenland 0:1 Northwest Territories (Coad)
08/03/16 Alaska 0:5 Sápmi (Sørensen (4), Hamnvik)
09/03/16 Northwest Territories 0:3 Yukon (Ponsioen (2), Carey)
09/03/16 Sápmi 5:4 Yukon (Sørensen (3), Hamnvik, Slettli; Ponsioen (2), Carey, Hanson)
09/03/16 Greenland 1:4 Sápmi (Mathiassen; Sørensen (2), Triumf, Hamnvik)



TEAM
P
W
D
L
GF
GA
PTS
GD
SÁPMI
4
4
0
0
24
5
12
19
YUKON
4
2
0
2
12
11
6
1
NORTHWEST TERRITORIES
4
1
1
2
1
13
4
-12
GREENLAND
4
1
1
2
10
11
4
-1
Alaska
4
0
2
2
3
10
2
-7


SEMI-FINALS

10/03/16 Greenland 0:4 Sápmi (Sørensen (4))
10/03/16 Northwest Territories 1:3 Yukon (Taylor; Ponsioen, Carey, Hanson)

THIRD-PLACE PLAY-OFF

11/03/16 Greenland 4:2 Northwest Territories (Mathiassen (2), Kristiansen (2); Tutton, Taylor)

FINAL

11/03/16 Sápmi 1:0 Yukon (Hamnvik)

SQUAD-LISTS

ALASKA: 2 Raye COFFEE, 3 Zoey KRIEGMONT, 4 Alessia LINDLEY, 5 Olivia SCHELLEKENS, 6 Elena BRYSON, 7 SIERRA DENNY, 8 Rio GEIGER, 9 Judith HEPBURN, 10 Sarah PENROSE

GREENLAND: 1 Pamela JOHANSEN, 2 Nivi MATHIASSEN, 3 Olina KRISTIANSEN, 4 Evita GRØNVOLD, 5 Nivi LANGE, 6 Nuunu-Marie LUKASSEN, 7 Regina MATHÆUSSEN, 8 Amannguaq FILEMONSEN, 9 Vaya SIMONSEN

NORTHWEST TERRITORIES: 6 Breanna WOLKI, 7 Kolbi BERNHARDT, 9 Tamelka STEINWAND, 11 Emma TUTTON, 15 Abigale COAD, 19 Cassidy TAYLOR, 21 Brynn MARTIN, 45 Miranda BECK

SÁPMI: 1 Ann-Heidi UTSI, 2 Pernille REMMAN, 3 Jenny Marie SLETTLI, 4 Elsa TANNERDAL, 5 Kari TRIUMF, 6 Sofie SØRENSEN, 7 Kristin HAMNVIK, 8 Frida EDVARDSEN, 9 Erika WINGSTAD

YUKON: 2 Line JENSEN, 3 Jamila McLEISH, 7 Thea CAREY, 10 Malorie HANSON, 11 Christine MOSER, 13 Jamie JOE-HUDSON, 17 Judith (Mikaela) PONSIOEN, 19 Alizée SALESSE, 22 Maria (Isabel) MAGSUCANG

HONOURS-LIST

2004 Alaska
2006 Alaska
2008 Sápmi
2010 Alaska
2012 Sápmi
2014 Sápmi
2016 SÁPMI

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AUTHOR'S NOTE: Many thanks to Doris Landry, the recently-retired secretary of the Arctic Winter Games International Committee, for kindly allowing the reproduction of the above statistical information for the 2016 AWG, which is available via the following website, and for her general assistance:

http://awg2016.gems.pro/Default.aspx


FOR THE RECORD: ARCTIC WINTER GAMES 2016 FUTSAL RESULTS - JUVENILE FEMALE

Friday 11 March was the final day of competition at the 2016 Arctic Games, which were held in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, and amongst those competitions reaching their conclusions were the five categories under the Futsal tournament. The first section to be completed was the Juvenile Female section, which covers girls born in or after 2002.

Five countries or regions participated in the aforementioned section, and Alberta North, who had won the previous two AWG Juvenile Female tournaments, topped the group stage with maximum points, before being knocked out by Northwest Territories - who had finished fourth - at the semi-final stage. Chloe Trottier, who had scored twice in her side's 3:2 victory against NWT in the final group game, put the Albertans in front in the second minute of the second half, Katie Hart, who had found the net for NWT in the three previous group games, including the game against the Albertans, equalised with just 23 seconds left. She went on to break Albertan hearts by scoring a golden goal in the fifth minute of extra-time, putting her side through to the final against all the odds.

Greenland, who had finished as runners-up in the group, paired with Yukon in the other semi-final, and although the Canadians struck first through Leah Ott after less than 90 seconds, the hosts roared back with two goals in the next four minutes through Emma Thomsen and Lis Anja Eriksen Christensen. There was no holding the Greenland team back in the second half, and they went on to score two more, with Asii Kleist Berthelsen and Christensen getting on the scoresheet.

Alberta North had beaten Yukon 1:0 in the group, and a similarly tight affair was expected when they met in the third-place play-off. The first half ran true to form - it was scoreless at the break - but the Albertans seized control in the second half when Chloe Trottier opened the scoring after 30 seconds. Lana Shahadat netted the second just a minute later, and it was all but over with five minutes left when Carly Thomson scored the third. 

And so to the final; Greenland expected, and their Juvenile Female team started against Northwest Territories as they meant to go on, dominating the first half and scoring twice through Lis Anja Eriksen Christensen in the first nine minutes of play, the second of which was a free-kick from almost on the touchline which squirmed under NWT 'keeper Janet Enge. Christensen almost completed her hat-trick a minute before the break with a long-range shot which fizzed just past Enge's left-hand post.  

The second half began with Molly Gillard scoring for NWT, but it was correctly disallowed for the most obvious of fouls on goalkeeper Viktoria Bøgeløv. Moments later, in the 19th minute, she did get her name on the scoresheet, collecting a pass from her combative captain Katie Hart before rifling a shot across Bøgeløv. Just over a minute later, Christensen came close again for Greenland, smacking her free kick on to the underside of the crossbar with Enge beaten. NWT's Wren Acorn also hit the woodwork from a free-kick when her looping shot left Bøgeløv grasping at thin air.

With the last minute of the game approaching, Acorn picked up the ball half-way inside her own half, beat two opponents and let go a speculative shot from distance which Bøgeløv should have saved; instead, she seemed to stumble towards the ball, caressing the top of it as it sped past her into the bottom corner.

And so to extra-time, which would be decided by a golden goal, or penalties if necessary, and which seemed more than a tad unlikely at half-time, given the Greenland team's domination of proceedings. But, decided by a golden goal it was, and it went the way of the visitors in the second minute of extra-time when Bøgeløv's throw-out to Emma Thomsen was intercepted by Gillard. Gillard ran on, toe-poked the ball just as it was getting away from her and Christensen attempted to intervene; the ball travelled on past Christensen's lunge and Bøgeløv's despairing dive into the bottom corner to put NWT in front. 

There was some momentary confusion as to whether the match was over as the NWT substitutes invaded the pitch, but, yes, it really was all over and the Northwest Territories had achieved the most unlikely of victories, their first since they won the very first Juvenile Female competition on home soil in Yellowknife in 1990. Defeat was hard on Greenland, and on no-one more so than Christensen, who had scored twice, hit the crossbar and peppered Enge's goal with shots from all angles and distances, and the hard-working Asii Kleist Berthelsen.

All credit, though, must go to the NWT team as a whole; they had come from behind twice to register unlikely victories against more favoured opposition. It wasn't just thanks to Gillard's double strike in the final, though, Hart's goals were invaluable, as were the contributions of team-mates such as Wren Acorn, Jenna Guy and Hannah Porter. The team battled hard for everything and each other, and this will stand them in good stead should they manage to make the step up to Junior level for the 2018 tournament on home ground.


RESULTS 

GROUP STAGE

07/03/16 Greenland 3:2 Yukon (Kleist Berthelsen (2), Thomsen; Rich, Williamson)
07/03/16 Greenland 1:1 Northwest Territory (Eriksen Christensen; Sobrepena)
07/03/16 Alaska 1:2 Alberta North (van Flein; Shahadat, Trottier)
08/03/16 Northwest Territory 1: 2 Yukon (Hart; Cairns (2))
08/03/16 Alberta North 1:0 Yukon (Perry)
08/03/16 Alaska 0:2 Northwest Territory (Hart (2))
09/03/16 Alberta North 4:2 Greenland (Shahadat, Ipshita, Thomson, Moore; Thomsen, Svendsen)
09/03/16 Alaska 3:4 Greenland (Chagnon, Goering, McLaughlin; Svendsen (2); Kleist Berthelsen (2))
09/03/16 Alberta North 3:2 Northwest Territory (Trottier (2), Shahadat; Hart (2))
09/03/16 Alaska 0:2 Yukon (Williamson, Rich)


TEAM
P
W
D
L
GF
GA
PTS
GD
ALBERTA NORTH
4
4
0
0
10
5
12
5
GREENLAND
4
2
1
1
10
10
7
0
YUKON
4
2
0
2
6
5
6
1
NORTHWEST TERRITORIES
4
1
1
2
6
6
4
0
Alaska
4
0
0
4
4
10
0
-6
 


SEMI-FINALS 

10/03/16 Alberta North 1:2 Northwest Territory (Trottier; Hart (2))
10/03/16 Greenland 4:1 Yukon (Thomsen, Kleist Berthelsen, Eriksen Christensen (2); Ott)

THIRD-PLACE FINAL 

10/03/16 Alberta North 3:0 Yukon (Trottier, Shahadat, Schubert)

FINAL 

11/03/16 Greenland 2:3 Northwest Territory (Eriksen Christensen (2); Gillard (2), Acorn)


SQUAD-LISTS

ALASKA: 2 Hope CHAGNON, 3 Eva GOERING, 4 Chloe SWEET, 5 Alexxa SCHUBERT, 6 Ryann DORRIS, 7 Molly McLAUGHLIN, 8 Riley McMAHAN, 9 Amanda VAN FLEIN, 10 Aubrey STACY

ALBERTA NORTH: 1 Haley MOORE, 3 Chloe TROTTIER, 4 Cloé TROUP, 5 Carly THOMSON, 6 Rachel PERRY, 7 Lana SHAHADAT, 8 Danielle GOUTHRO, 9 Ipshita TOMAR, 10 Katelyn DOUCETTE

GREENLAND: 1 Victoria BØGELØV, 2 Anouk HOLM JENSEN, 3 Susan HERMAJI, 4 Lis Anja ERIKSEN CHRISTENSEN, 5 Emma THOMSEN, 6 Kaya Sascha GODTFREDSEN, 7 Juliet EGEDE, 8 Asii KLEIST BERTHELSEN, 9 Navarana SVENDSEN

NORTHWEST TERRITORIES: 1 Janet ENGE, 2 Wren ACORN, 4 Jenna GUY, 5 Hannah PORTER, 6 Destiny HOBBS-STEWART, 7 Charlene SOBREPENA, 8 Katie HART, 11 Chidubem DURU, 13 Molly GILLARD, 15 Denaya HANNINEN

YUKON: 5 Peyton TWARDOCHLEB, 3 Jasmine SEALY, 4 Leah OTT, 10 Abby RICH, 13 Taliya LINDLEY, 14 Cassidy CAIRNS, 17 Kamryn WILLIAMSON, 20 Alyssa RUSNAK, 24 Amy VANDERKLEY


HONOURS LIST

1990 Northwest Territories
1994 Alaska
1996 N/K
1998 Alberta North
2000 Alaska
2004 Alaska
2006 Alaska
2008 Alaska
2010 Alaska
2012 Alberta North
2014 Alberta North
2016 NORTHWEST TERRITORIES

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AUTHOR'S NOTE: Many thanks to Doris Landry, the recently-retired secretary of the Arctic Winter Games International Committee, for kindly allowing the reproduction of the above statistical information for the 2016 AWG, which is available via the following website, and for her general assistance:

http://awg2016.gems.pro/Default.aspx