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The road to the Alberta Bowl for the St. Albert High Skyhawks ended Saturday in Lloydminster.

The No. 2-ranked Holy Rosary Raiders (12-0) downed the Skyhawks 28-0 in the Tier III (school population 450 to 749) provincial north final.

The Raiders, winners of back-to-back Wheatland Football League titles and the 2014 Tier IV (449 or less students) Alberta Bowl, advance to Saturday’s provincial final against the defending champions and the No. 1-ranked Cochrane Cobras (12-0). Kickoff is 11 a.m. at Foote Field.

The No. 7-ranked Skyhawks (6-5) were competing in their third north final in four provincial playoff appearances representing the metro Edmonton league in the five-year history as a Tier III team at St. Albert Catholic High School. They lost 21-14 to the hometown Stettler Wildcats in 2011 and the next year crushed the St. Paul Lions 52-10 in Edmonton for a berth in the Alberta Bowl and lost 31-10 to Cochrane at Foote Field.

The Miles division two finalists pulled off three stunning come-from-behind victories en route to the north final by scoring the winning points with basically seconds to play: 23-22 over the Strathcona Lords (2-5) and 27-25 against the St. Francis Xavier Rams (5-2) in the Miles playoffs and 41-35 over the No. 9-ranked Peace River Pioneers (6-4) on the road in the north semifinals.

The only Tier III team in the Miles the last two years also competed in its first metro final since 2012 in the Carr conference before the merger of the metro and Edmonton public leagues. The 25-8 loss to the McNally Tigers (8-0 in the Miles) also ended a four-game winning streak, the longest for the Skyhawks since their 9-4 campaign in 2012.

Organizers of a new 55-plus recreational slowpitch league are holding an information meeting for interested players Dec. 6 at 6:30 p.m. in the Northern Alberta Business Incubator boardroom on Mission Ave.

The fun league was launched because the St. Albert Men’s Slowpitch Association was losing senior players to age-related disabilities, a lack of skill demanded by some teams and concern for the safety of players. Players that did leave were surveyed and the response was positive for the implementation of the league. Through word of mouth and information posters, organizers compiled a list of 28 interested players, including several plus-60 players.

Organizers were unsuccessful negotiating playing time during the day at the Meadowview Diamonds but the City of St. Albert has made available two diamonds twice a week, starting next spring.

For more information, contact John Mackenzie at 780-458-1240 or jjmack2@telus.net.

Gary Christenson is the new head professional at the Sturgeon Valley Golf & Country Club.

With over 20 years experience in the golf industry, Christenson brings a wealth of knowledge in all facets of golf shop operations. He is the past head professional at the Northern Bear Golf Club and for the past six seasons as the head professional at the Stony Plain Golf Course.

The process for selection involved a job posting on both the PGA of Alberta and the PGA of Canada employment sections and applications were received from across Canada. Several candidates were interviewed and Christenson’s attention to member service and activities set him apart from his peers.

Christenson’s first day is Dec. 1.

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St. Albert Gazette

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