It’s a French Adventure for Junior Sharks Stars


Some of the young Solway Sharks players headed off to France recently to represent Scotland, taking part in international ice hockey tournaments over Easter weekend.

Lewis Gibson and Kyle Carruth headed to Wasquehal in Lille with the National Under 11 team.  After a long bus and ferry journey from the UK they were keen to get out on the ice and into the action.  Playing several games against French, Dutch and Slovakian teams during the first two days of the tournament the youngest Scotland team hit ice the running, and quickly took control of the competition.  The team swept the board, winning all their games during the qualifying rounds, with both Lewis and Kyle scoring and assisting numerous goals, and making their presence felt in the team.  Their first outing together, all the Scotland players gelled together as a team and played really well.  Unfortunately the only game the team lost all weekend was the semi-final against French team Rouen, which saw them end up in the third-place play-off match.  Not downhearted, the youngsters regrouped and put in another storming performance against Amiens, delighting their coaches and the travelling support by reclaiming their scoring form to win by 4 goals to 2.

Both Kyle and Lewis, though tired, thoroughly enjoyed their experience, and are now looking forward to the National Conference competition in Sheffield at the end of the month.


Lewis Houston and Liam Stenton ( Main Photo)  headed off to Neuilly in Paris with the Scotland U15 team.  Despite an equally long journey, they too headed out onto the ice full of energy and enthusiasm.  Playing various French teams and one from the Czech Republic over the first two days, the team swept to victory in all their qualifying games, Lewis and Liam both scoring several goals and assisting others.  Despite winning by big margins in the qualifiers, it was a single goal, scored by Houston assisted by Stenton, that saw Scotland win their semi-final game, and progress to meet the Czech team in the final.  Another nail-biting, hard-fought match followed, the Scotland team all dug in and found reserves of energy, but despite some lovely passing hockey, and Houston having a penalty shot, it wasn’t until the final minute that they managed to put the puck in the back of the net.  With the Czech netminder pulled, an empty-net goal in the final seconds sealed the victory and saw the team, and the crowd, celebrate in style.

The boys both appreciated the experience of playing with and getting to know the rest of the team, and preparing for the Conference tournament.

Solway Sharks Juniors coach Jamie Kerr said, “All four boys have had a worthwhile trip with their respective Scottish age groups. Kyle and Lewis have been able to get a feel for what is expected when representing their country, and how it differs from club hockey.  They both have a lot to learn over and above their current potential, and playing with the country’s top talents should see them able to use basic systems a lot more productively.  They will take confidence from their contribution to the team.

Liam and Lewis have been key players for the Scottish teams for a while now, and continue to contribute on the ice and scoreboard as expected.  They will know from previous years that success at the French tournament is a productive warm up, and that they must find an extra gear to take to the far more competitive Sheffield Conference showpiece weekend.”


Latest Articles