Ringette players from the southeast will be suiting up to represent Team Manitoba this weekend.    

Steinbach's Emily Palmer and Jamie Bishop of the Eastman Heat U19A ringette team claimed the provincials title in Winnipeg earlier this month when they defeated the Southeast Winnipeg Ringette Association (SWRA) Fury 7-1.     

Their win makes them Team Manitoba at the Western Canadian Ringette Championships (WCRC) in Winnipeg from March 29 to April 1.     

“We're going to be battling against Team Saskatchewan, Team B.C., Team Alberta just to see who is best in Western Canada,” Bishop explains.    

Palmer says becoming Team Manitoba takes immense dedication and preparation.    

“A lot of work. We have our two to three practices a week, our dry lands, and we added exhibition games anytime we could. We prep all year to become Team Manitoba,” Palmer explains.  

Emily Palmer and Jamie BishopEmily Palmer (left) and Jamie Bishop (right). (Photo Submitted)

For Bishop, the opportunity is “really good” and “exciting.”    

“It feels almost like a dream come true," she says. "Honestly, we've always tried to work up to Team Manitoba, and sometimes you just place second. You still get to be with your team, and it's still fun, but finally, you get to be the best of the best.”    

Palmer adds their team has grown together over the past four years. Most players have been playing together for the past four years. She describes them as a “really well-bonded team.” Their coaching staff has mostly stayed the same, with new additions over the years.    

“They're amazing. They work us really hard, but they're always so kind to us, and they bond really well with our team,” Palmer says.    

They say there are nerves coming into the weekend. However, they are prepared and eager to represent Team Manitoba.    

“We've had a lot of practice,” Bishop says. “We just want to get on and get out there.”     

They kick off the Western Championships in a battle against Team Saskatchewan on Thursday, March 30, at 9:45 AM at the Seven Oaks Arena in Winnipeg.  

With files from Carly Koop.