Article by N. Schoonderbeek/Media by C. Archer & Shannon Nagle Photography
It’s been a week since our boys played their hearts out and made our community proud.
But none were as proud as the group of mothers who gathered outside the arena after the game. The weather was beautiful that weekend, and it was Mother’s Day. Yet these moms couldn’t imagine being anywhere else but in an arena to support their family.
“This is the best, spending the day with the kids no matter what they’re doing,” said Robin Klaas. “There is no other way to spend Mother’s Day.”
Mandy Bell agreed with this sentiment. “I absolutely would not change how we spent Mother’s Day,” she said. “It sucks that it had to end this way, but we loved every minute of it and they had a great season.”
From L-R: Mandy & Hayes Bell, Lisa & Jordan Shaw, Robin & Adam Klaas
Jennifer Williamson, who joined the Eagles’ mom club when her son Cole joined the team in mid-January, found immediate community with the other parents. This was an easy transition given how much time Cole had spent playing with some of the other boys in the Clarington Toros program. “We’ve shared the hockey journey with them. It’s like we weren’t even gone,” she said.
Jennifer says she emphasized to Cole that beating out 59 of 60 teams is a big accomplishment. “They made it right to the end of the tournament. They did well, but the hockey gods just weren’t with us that day. They gave it their all, and that’s all you can do.”
Some of their boys created pivotal moments during the tournament weekend. Adam Klaas scored the Eagles’ opening goal of the Schmalz Cup final game. Robin shared that there were no words to describe how she felt at that moment. “I was thinking he was going to get the bench fired up and get this job finished.”
And of course, Jordan Shaw scored that spectacular goal with only seconds left in the first period in the final game of the round-robin. Lisa Shaw spoke with her son later that night, and they discussed how long he’d been waiting for such an opportunity. “This time he made sure it happened,” said Lisa.
Jordan Shaw gives the @EaglesPJHL a 1-0 lead with 5 seconds left in the period. Here’s the goal and Shaw’s interview with @Alec_M_Media during the intermission. #LocalSports #PJHL #519Playoffs @LCanadiens @play_the_pj pic.twitter.com/qjET6ZDJh0
— 519 Sports Online (@519sportsonline) May 13, 2023
As the mothers stood outside the arena following the game, I asked some what they planned to say when they saw their sons. They all spoke of how proud they were to see the team come so far.
Mandy, whose son Hayes Bell contributed an assist on Klaas’s goal, said she would tell her boy that it was an exciting end to the season. “I couldn’t be any prouder – you played your heart out.”
“Keep your head up, and let’s start focusing on rebuilding for next year… put those skates back on and we’re going to do it again,” said Lisa Shaw.
To every person in the community that supported our team this season, including our team ownership, volunteers, sponsors, arena staff, and greatest fans on earth – thank you! We will see you in the fall.
Players, remember to reach out to personally thank every person who supported you this season, from the arena or from home. And if you haven’t already, make up for that breakfast in bed that your mom missed out on during Mother’s Day.