Penticton’s revived independent sports franchise is back for another year.
The Penticton Silver Bullets, a senior men’s AA hockey team that returned to the ice in 2022 after a 28-year hiatus, will play for the second time in as many seasons this fall.
Team captain Matthew Fraser says Penticton will compete in a division with the Rossland Warriors, Powell River Regals, and the league’s newest team, the Lumby Lumberjacks.
“We’re really excited to grow on what we did last year because we thought it was a special season,” Fraser said.
It was in August 2022 when Fraser, along with some of his closest hockey friends in Penticton, decided to come together to revive what was once a beloved community attraction at historic Memorial Arena.
The Silver Bullets’ roster last season featured former NHL forward Colton Gillies, who suited up for both the Minnesota Wild and Columbus Blue Jackets from 2008 to 2013.
And there’s more NHL experience coming to the team this year, with Fraser confirming that former Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens forward Martin St. Pierre, 40, has officially joined forces with the Silver Bullets.
Players on the team, who will compete for BC Hockey’s Coy Cup, are expected to range in age from 21 to 41.
Although the season schedule has yet to be released, Fraser says Penticton will play their home opener on Friday, Nov. 24, against Powell River, at Memorial Arena.
“Last year, Memorial Arena was so great to play in at home and all the guys relished the opportunity to play in front of crowds, especially with the atmosphere at the old barn,” said Fraser, who served as an assistant coach of the Penticton Vees from 2016 to 2021. “We’re excited to build on it from last year and outdraw the amount of people that attended last year.”
The team’s captain said the Silver Bullets will play once on the road in October before returning to Memorial Arena, and eventually welcoming their newest regional foes from Lumby.
“We’re just excited to have another team in close proximity to Penticton,” Fraser said.