Vernon Watkin Motors Mustangs captain Hudson Kibblewhite beats South Delta Storm goalie Marcus Taylor high over the shoulder for the opening goal of the 49th annual Coca Cola Classic Vernon Winter Carnival Peewee Hockey Tournament Thursday, Feb. 13, at Kal Tire Place North. (Roger Knox - Morning Star0

Vernon Mustangs fall in tourney opener

South Delta Storm rallies from early hole to beat host Mustangs 4-3 at 49th annual Coca Cola Classic

The South Delta Storm rallied from an early deficit to edge the host Vernon Watkin Motors Mustangs 4-3 in the opening game Thursday morning of the 49th annual Coca Cola Classic Vernon Winter Carnival Peewee Hockey Tournament at Kal Tire Place North.

Nolan Stewart scored the winner for South Delta at 6:57 of the third period, snapping a 3-3 tie.

Vernon captain Hudson Kibblewhite staked the hosts to a 2-0 first-period lead, only to see the Storm rattle off three unanswered goals past Mustangs goalie Calder Barry in the middle frame.

Evan Kashuba’s unassisted goal evened the game for Vernon at 2:27 of the third.

Following the opening ceremonies Thursday at 5:30 p.m., Vernon played the tournament’s only out-of-province team, the Yellowknife Wolfpack – back for a second straight tournament.

The Mustangs, playing in the Coca Cola Division, wrap up the preliminary round Friday at 5 p.m. against Okanagan rivals Kamloops Blazers.

READ MORE: Vernon Watkin Motors Mustangs set for Coca Cola Classic

The Sun Valley Division features the 2019 A Final runners-up, the Port Moody Panthers – who lost 9-7 to the Vancouver Thunderbirds – as well as the Coquitlam Chiefs, South Okanagan (Oliver-Osoyoos) Peewee, and Merritt Centennials.

Games start at 8 a.m. Friday and run throughout the day. The consolation semifinals Saturday go at 8 a.m. and 10:15 a.m., followed by the championships semis at 12:30 p.m. and 2:45 p.m.

Sunday is Finals Day. The Mickey Ogasawara D Division Final will be played at 9 a.m., The Mickey McMahon C Final is slated for 11:30 a.m., the Alex Kuly B Division Final is at 2 p.m., followed by the Amy Myles A Division Final at 4:30 p.m.

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Vernon Watkin Motors forward-turned-defenceman Ollie Reid (left) uses the popular toe drag to avoid the would-be check from South Delta Storm defender Owen Cooper during the opening game of the 49th annual Coca Cola Classic Vernon Winter Carnival Peewee Hockey Tournament Thursday, Feb. 13, at Kal Tire Place North. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

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