The North Okanagan Knights will play their KIJHL home opener Friday, Sept. 30, against the Golden Rockets at the Nor-Val Sports Centre in Armstrong. (Bill Pringle Photography)

The North Okanagan Knights will play their KIJHL home opener Friday, Sept. 30, against the Golden Rockets at the Nor-Val Sports Centre in Armstrong. (Bill Pringle Photography)

North Okanagan Knights to open KIJHL season on road

Opening night of league play is Sept. 23 with Knights in Grand Forks; home opener Sept. 30 vs Golden

The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League has released its 2022-23 regular season schedule, which begins on Friday, Sept. 23, with 18 of the league’s 20 teams in action.

The North Okanagan Knights will play opening night on the road in Grand Forks against the Border Bruins. The Knights’ home opener will be one week later, Friday, Sept. 30, against the Golden Rockets at the Nor-Val Sports Centre.

All teams will play a 44-game regular season that includes six games each against divisional rivals, two games against teams from the alternate division within the same conference, and one game against each team from the alternate conference. For inter-conference play, Okanagan Conference clubs will host opponents from one division in the Kootenay Conference while traveling to the other division, and vice versa:

Teams in the Bill Ohlhausen division host teams from the Eddie Mountain division;

Teams in the Neil Murdoch division host teams from the Bill Ohlhausen division;

Teams in the Doug Birks division host teams from the Neil Murdoch division;

Teams in the Eddie Mountain division host teams from the Doug Birks division.

The KIJHL will observe a holiday break from Dec. 19-27 with games resuming Dec. 28 and the regular season concluding on Saturday, Feb. 11. The KIJHL playoffs begin on Friday, Feb. 17 when 16 teams begin their quest for the Teck Cup, with an expanded time frame that will allow for each series to take place over 12 days.

The Knights missed the post-season in 2021-22.

North Okanagan will play a season-high three straight home games Oct. 21, 28 and 29 against the 100 Mile House Wranglers, Princeton Posse and Fernie Ghostriders, respectively.

The Knights’ longest road stretch is five consecutive games from Nov. 18-Nov. 27 against division/conference rivals. North Okanagan will also play four of its five games in December at home.

The regular season will close for the Knights with a home-and-home series against the Posse, who are celebrating their 20th season this year.

The 2023 Cyclone Taylor Cup will be hosted by the reigning KIJHL champion Revelstoke Grizzlies beginning Thursday, April 13, 2023.

The Spokane Braves are scheduled to play their first KIJHL regular season game since February 2020 when they host Osoyoos Coyotes on Sept. 23 to begin their long-awaited 50th season. The league is continuing to monitor circumstances around the Canada-U.S. border and will provide updates.

READ MORE: Princeton eliminates North Okanagan Knights from KIJHL playoff race

READ MORE: North Okanagan Knights close out KIJHL season with win



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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Junior B HockeyKIJHLLocal SportsNorth Okanagan Regional District

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