There are two St. Albert connections to the Grey Cup game on Sunday in Winnipeg.
Jordan Maksymic is the running backs coach with the Ottawa RedBlacks and Graeme Scott is an equipment assistant with the Edmonton Eskimos.
Maksymic is a former Bellerose Bulldogs’ quarterback and the team’s MVP in Grade 12 after playing his first down of football the year before as a receiver and backup QB. He took over the offensive co-ordinator’s duties for the junior Bulldogs midway through the 2005 season during the rebirth of the Bellerose junior program.
Maksymic served as Ottawa’s offensive assistant in 2014 after spending three years with the Eskimos. He was the fulltime offensive assistant in 2013 after two years in the team’s video department.
Maksymic also worked in the video department of the Calgary Stampeders and as a graduate assistant at Northern Arizona University.
Scott has toiled in the Eskimos’ equipment department for several years. The Paul Kane High School alumnus is also one of the toughest scrumhalfs to ever spin pass the ball at the St. Albert Rugby Football Club.
Meanwhile, the rugby club is hosting its annual Grey Cup Snow Bowl on Sunday, stating at 2:30 p.m.
The St. Albert Curling Club has scheduled a press conference for a special announcement on Monday at 11 a.m. in the Friendly Giant Lounge.
Curling club president Jackie Rae Greening, Mayor Nolan Crouse and Lori Olson-Johns, a second team all-star third on the second-place Val Sweeting rink at the 2015 Scotties Tournament of Hearts and Paul Kane High School teacher, are among the dignitaries confirmed for the event.
Greening declined to revel what the announcement was but the speculation is St. Albert will host a major women’s or seniors’ competition during the 2016/17 season.
Meanwhile, the Northern Alberta Curling Association women’s playdowns will take place Jan. 2 to 4 in St. Albert. The winners advance to provincials, Jan. 20 to 24 at the North Hill Curling Club in Calgary.
The Edmonton Black Gold Rush, a first-year National Ringette League team with a strong St. Albert connection on and off the ice, have two big games on tap today against the RATH in Calgary.
Game times are 12:15 p.m. at Norma Bush Arena and 6:15 p.m. at Shouldice Arena.
The Rush defeated the RATH, the fourth-place finishers at the 2015 nationals, 6-3 in the team’s NRL debut last month in Strathmore.
Two points separate the Rush (3-3-2) and RATH (3-4) in the race for second place in the western conference behind the Edmonton WAM! (7-0-1), the 2015 national bronze medallists.
Three teams from the west advance to nationals, April 3 to 6 in London, Ont. The top two automatically qualify for nationals and a playoff decides the last berth in the four-team conference.
The NRL was founded in 2004 and is affiliated with Ringette Canada.
The Rush have played only two games this month and both were against the BC Thunder (2-9) on Sunday. Scores were 4-3 for the Thunder at Troy Murray Arena and 8-5 for the Rush at the Terwilliger Community Recreation Centre.
The Rush play the Thunder three times as the feature games at the Fraser Valley tournament next weekend. The St. Albert U19A belles, U16A juniors and U14A tweens are also participating in the tournament.
Talia Gallant tallied twice, captain Nikki Andruchow also scored and Lauren Henderson had two assists in the loss.
Shots were 42-36 for the Thunder and Lauryn Girard (0-2-1, 5.67 GAA) was in net.
Andruchow, Molly Chorny and Danielle Pronovost potted a pair each in the rematch. Henderson and Marie-Eve Gautier sniped singles and Pronovost added two assists.
Shots were even at 46 apiece and Anj Grewal (3-1-1, 4.73 GAA) was between the pipes.
NRL games consist of four 13-minute periods.
Pronovost leads the Rush in scoring with 10 goals and 19 points in eight games.
Andruchow has 13 points, followed by 12 for Gallant and 10 for Henderson, a member of the U21 national team that will compete in the junior division at worlds, Dec. 28 to Jan. 4 in Helsinki, Finland.
Andruchow, who scored the first NRL goal in team history, and Gallant are tied for second in goals with seven and Gautier has six.
Six Rush players are graduates of the 2015 national bronze-medal winning St. Albert Mission U19AA belles.