MWBA - Maritime Womens Basketball Association

NB Rivals Clash Friday

It’s a provincial rivalry arguably unmatched in New Brunswick.


Saint John.

Was it the fact Saint John was indeed the Capital of New Brunswick for a brief period in the late 1700s?

White collar versus blue collar?

Our teams are better than yours?

Doesn’t matter the sport, the rivalry is alive and well and there’s a new chapter being written along the shoulders of Highway No. 7.

The new chapter is being penned by the Fredericton Freeze and Port City Fog of Saint John, created by the Maritime Women’s Basketball Association.

‘I’ve been involved in athletics of all sorts and one of the best rivalries out there in anything is always Fredericton and Saint John,’ said veteran Freeze head coach, Kevin Daley. ‘There’s just always been this remarkable competition between the two cities. Maybe we’re actually alike, but just don’t want to admit it. Then again, when there is a scoreboard present at a sporting event and it’s Fredericton and Saint John, it’s always a lot of fun to be a part of it.’

The Fog travels up the highway for a clash with the Freeze at the Lady Beaverbrook Gymnasium on the campus of the University of New Brunswick on Friday.

Game time is 7 p.m.

The game, in fact, is the MWBA’s Medavie Game of the Week.

Fredericton enters the contest with a 1-1 mark and Port City is 1-0 as the MWBA opened its third season of operation last weekend.

The seven-team saw teams break franchise attendance records – including the Freeze – as the pendulum of momentum continues to follow the MWBA.

‘We were certainly tested last weekend and it was quick for everyone to find out there will be no off nights in this league,’ said Daley. ‘The competition bar has been raised. If you’re not ready to play, you’ll pay for it.’

The Freeze opened at the Richard J. Currie Centre last weekend. The team is expected to play the remainder of its home schedule at the LB Gym – affectionately known as The Pit – but there is a possibility of moving back to the RJCC for two games.

Fredericton will hit the road for a couple of weeks prior to returning home June 2.

The matchup against Port City will be a tough one for Fredericton.

Reigning MWBA MVP Kaylee Kilpatrick, multiple-time Atlantic University Sport all-star Mackenzee Ryan, former AUS scoring champion Courtney Thompson, USPORTS champion Rachel Farwell of Toronto Metropolitan Bold and high-scoring Erin Ingalls all give the Fog a formidable crew.

There is a solid complimentary cast of young players including Fredericton’s own Kristen Taylor. Taylor did not play on the weekend and is listed as questionable.

The Freeze had a bang-up weekend from a pair of Ontario University Athletic players in rookie Bailey Russell and returnee Allie McCarthy. The teammates from University of Ottawa Gee Gees certainly showed their familiarity with each other.

Veteran Katie Daley had 17 points in the opener, Robbi Daley will have multiple defensive assignments, forward Kate Butts and Jenny Nkuah allow for strength in the middle and the Freeze is expected to return former University of New Brunswick star Amanda (Sharpe) Russell to the lineup against the Fog. Jane Boyle also contributed nicely for the Freeze in her return to top-flight competition.

‘There is so much talent running down both benches, that we anticipate a fast and physical game,’ said Daley. ‘Port City is well coached and disciplined and will be coming here looking to take two points and stay unbeaten. We look forward to the challenge.’

Tickets are available at the door and are $7 adults, $5 seniors/students and children under-14 are free.

You can pay cash or debit.

Following the game, fans of the Freeze can have autograph posters signed and have photos with players or friends under the team media deck.

For those who want to venture into Downtown Fredericton, bring your ticket stub from Friday’s game to Monks&Jonesie (98 Regent St) for a free 20-ounce Molson Coors product with purchase of an appetizer.

– Allie McCarthy gets to the rim in Fredericton’s season opener. (Fran Harris Photo)