Vernon Black Widows sting Panthers for Novice Timbits title
Vernon Black Widows unwrapped holiday gold in the Rep division of the Vernon Timbits Challenge Novice Hockey Tournament last weekend.
The Black Widows capped a perfect 5-0 record with a 5-2 win over the Vernon Panthers in the championship game Sunday at Civic Arena.
Austin Roest paced the Widows with a pair in the final, while Zack Casagrande, Zac Milne and Erik Pastro added singles. Bennett Kuhnlein scored twice for the Panthers, both assisted by Jace Weir.
“The two Vernon teams are very familiar with each other and evenly matched,” said Black Widow head coach Tim Milne. “It was a great gold-medal game and a good day for Vernon minor hockey.”
In round-robin play, the Widows grounded the Kelowna Jr. Chiefs 4-2, Kamloops Coyotes 6-1, Kelowna Sting 7-2 and Kelowna Blue Storm 14-0.
Roest led the Spider attack with hat tricks in each preliminary game, while JJ Milne led a strong d-corps which included Riley Cormier, Brydon Pilon and Brock Holliday.
Netminder Logan Killingbeck got all five wins, surrendering only seven goals in five tournament games.
“The kids had a couple great battles in the round-robin and improved each game,” said Milne. “We were really impressed with the team play and how they passed the puck.”
Meanwhile, the Watkin Motors Mustangs wrapped up the West Kelowna Pee Wee Rep tournament with a hard-fought 6-5 loss to Dawson Creek Sunday at Royal LePage Place.
The Stangs battled back a 3-0 deficit early in the game, only to surrend a last-minute, extra-man goal. Powell Connor earned game MVP and Rowan Miller took the Hustle award.
In Saturday morning action, the Ponies grounded the Kelowna Jr. Rockets 6-1, with game MVP going to Colton Schaper-Kotter and the Hustle award to Drayden Dougan.
With just a two-hour break, the Mustangs came out flat in a 4-0 loss to the host Warriors. Game MVP was Mika Burns and Hustle honours went to Joe Eggert.
Early Sunday morning, the Herd ended Dawson Creek’s unbeaten run with a 3-1 decision in their final round-robin to set up the final rematch.
Logan Higgs went 2-0 in net and Jordan Wilde went 2-1, each goalie earning an MVP for their efforts.
Nick Cherkowski (4+2), Schaper-Kotter (2+2), Miller (2+1), Dougan (2+1), Eggert (1+3) Connor (1+2), Coleton Bilodeau (1+2), CJ Storey (1+2), Lucas Halvorson (1+1) and Dylan Sedlacek provided Mustangs’ tournament offence. Helpers went to Keeghan McRae (2), Caden Bracken and Dawson Chase.
The Vernon M&K Ready Mix Demons’ perseverance earned them an 8-8 tie with the Vernon Thunder in Atom Super League exhibition action Sunday.
Kevin Morgan needed less than a minute to get the Demons on the board in the first period. Another single by Dawson Martian had the Demons trailing 3-2 at the break.
Brody Wright was solid on the back end, and Demon goalie Tyler Hamilton made a beauty save on a Thunder breakaway during a less-than-spectacular line change late in the first.
The Thunder padded their lead in the second period, but Martian got a lucky bounce to bring the Demons back within one, and collected his hat-trick goal late on a crazy-angle shot after the Bolts had restored their two-goal cushion.
After killing off a penalty early in the third period, the Demons went on the offensive and were rewarded when Christopher Bond sniped one to tie it 5-5. The Thunder answered 30 seconds later and then capitalized on a penalty shot to go back in front.
Demon winger Ronan Bedard set up Morgan, but the Thunder took another at 7:21 to secure another two-goal lead.
Gage Stoll brought the Demons within one again with six minutes left, and after fending off another powerplay, Morgan sealed the draw with just over a minute to play.