With only one local team entered in the 2013 version of the Steel City Tournament in Sault Ste Marie, the Copper Cliff Midget AA Redmen proved to be more than capable local flag bearers.
The Redmen captured the event, turning things around notably once the games were for keeps. In fact, the Copper Cliff posted a modest record of 1-2 in round-robin play, salvaged only by the fact that all eight teams advanced to the quarter-finals.
In fact, success in preliminary-round play did not prove much of a benefit at all in this competition. Heading to the Soo early, the Redmen played Jan. 3, bounced 6-2 by the Root River Rangers.
Copper Cliff was noticeably more competitive Jan. 4, but it still wasn't enough to secure a win as the Redmen fell just short, losing 3-2 to the Fort William Hurricanes.
The locals started to turn things around in the evening encounter, posting a 3-2 victory of their own over the Current River Comets (Thunder Bay).
That win was enough to allow the Redmen to finish third in their four team pool, earning a rematch with the Rangers. Coach Parker MacLeod and company would bring their A game to the rink Jan. 5, slipping past Root River 4-3 in overtime.
Ironically, the fourth-place crew from Current River also pulled the upset, eliminating Fort William with a 9-2 win, while the Mount Clemens Wolves, who posted a 3-0 mark in Pool B, were also sent to the sidelines, bested 3-2 by Soo Northside Toyota.
The excitement of the overtime win carried over to Jan. 6, as it was no contest in the semifinals, with Copper Cliff outscoring Soo Northside Toyota 7-2.
In the other cross-over game, Current River downed the New Liskeard Lions 7-4, creating a rematch of the final round-robin game for both the Redmen and the Comets.
To their credit, the Copper Cliff lads garnered the sweep, doubling Current River 4-2 and returning home with a championship banner in the process.
The 2012-2013 edition of the Redmen Midget AA team includes Cody Pasanen, Curtis Greasley, Jacob Leore, Brandyn Kowal, Alex Vendramin, Marcus Rouleau, Carter Jibb, Michael Mooney, Riley Campbell, Sam Sedore, Jacob Belanger, Rudy Giusti, Spencer Romenco, Dylan Scott, Tyler Cacciotti, Ryan Dozzi, Mathieu Kingsley and Jacob Martin.