Goaltender Emelia Portugal of Maple Ridge played goal for Team BC. (Special to The News)

Goaltender Emelia Portugal of Maple Ridge played goal for Team BC. (Special to The News)

Maple Ridge ringette goalie named to Team BC

Portugal has played for the provincial team twice

A Maple Ridge ringette player, Emelia Portugal, was chosen to play for Team B.C. at the U16 level this season.

Portugal, 15, regularly plays in the Port Coquitlam Ridge Meadows Ringette Association (PCRMRA), and became apart of the organization at the age of seven, after learning about the sport though family.

Since then, she has gone on to play as a netminder for the Lower Mainland Ringette League AA Thunder, and has been playing high-level ringette for three years, making Team BC for two of those years, but with the third interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Being a part of Team B.C. is an amazing experience I’d never forget,” she said. “It’s an honour to be representing B.C. through the sport I play, and in the process I get to meet girls from all across the province, making lifelong friends I always have so much fun with.”

BC won gold in February in a Spruce Grove tournament, going undefeated.

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Portugal attends Archbishop Carney Regional Secondary School (ACRSS) in Port Coquitlam, and said balancing school and high-level sports can be tough. There’s also a lot of pressure of playing goal in high-level sports.

“But I couldn’t be more thankful to have such supportive people by my side,” she said. “The small moments of victory I get to experience with this team make all the hard work worth it.”

Portugal plans to pursue a career in the medical field, so this is likely her last season playing for the province, so she can focus on “other aspects of life.”

“However I hope to share my experience through goalie coaching,” she said.

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– With files from Priyanka Ketkar

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