© Times-Herald photo by Matthew Gourlie
Members of the Moose Jaw Warriors celebrate a goal during the 2011-12 WHL season.
The Moose Jaw Warriors had the best regular season in franchise history and only once before had gone as deep in the playoffs as they did in 2012.
The Warriors deep playoff run and the goals they met along the way earned them the Times-Herald’s Story of the Year for 2012.
They were a unanimous choice from our panel that includes Marc Smith from Golden West Radio (CHAB, Country 100 and Mix 103), James Gallo, the voice of the Moose Jaw Warriors along with Katie Brickman and Matthew Gourlie from the Times-Herald sports department.
The Warriors’ loss in the Eastern Conference finals to Edmonton was a disappointing finish to a season with so many highs and so much promise, but with standing room only crowds cheering them along the way, the Warriors were an easy choice as the top story.
The team posted a phenomenal 30-3-2-1 record at home, they had a franchise record 98 points and won their third East Division title.
The runner-up for top story was a great event that just recently captivated the city — the Capital One Canada Cup of Curling.
Curler fans broke the event’s attendance record as they came out to Mosaic Place to watch some of the top curlers in the country — both male and female — battle to try to earn a spot at the Olympic curling trials.
Third on the list was another Warriors’ story: Morgan Rielly overcoming a surgery on a torn ACL in his knee to be selected fifth overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the NHL draft.
Olympic swimmer Richard Weinberger’s surprising swim to a bronze medal in the 10 kilometre open water marathon in London was the number four story.
The Saskatchewan Roughriders’ visits to the fieldhouse to hold a training camp session and their April mini camp at the indoor facility was tied for the fifth spot on our list.
That spot was also shared by curler and fastball standout Dane Roy’s thus far successful battle with cancer.
Moose Jaw swimmer Mike Mintenko was elected into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and that accolade earned him votes on our list.
Other stories also receiving votes were Moose Jaw Miller Express catcher Daniel Devonshire being drafted and signed by the Toronto Blue Jays; Keegan Arnyek’s four-medal performance at the high school track provincials; the Warriors shattering their attendance record at Mosaic Place and the city hosting the Western Canadian Junior B Ladies Fastball Championships.