Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Barb Byrn
I want to congratulate Campbell River on their superb representation of the VIJHL at the Cyclone Taylor Cup this past weekend. Their loss in the first game on Thursday definitely showed that they were still tired and hurting after playing 114 minutes and 48 seconds of hockey to win the VIJHL Championship on Sunday night against the Victoria Cougars and then travelling for just about 18 hours on a bus to get to Creston. But on Friday they came out onto the ice on fire and played hockey the way we have all seen them play this season. They ran over the home team and left the sold out crowd stunned. By the end of Friday, every team had won 1 game and lost 1 game which meant that who ever won on Saturday would be a team going to the Gold game and the losers would be going to the Bronze game.Campbell River's third game on Saturday was against the Aldergrove Kodiaks - a team that had maxed out on 20 year olds. The game was very physical and got quite chippy at times but Campbell River prevailed and came out the winner to advance to the Gold Game.On Sunday the Creston Valley Thundercats thrilled their home town by winning Bronze and the other KIJHL team, the Beaver Valley Nitehawks upset Campbell River to win the Gold. In the past three years at the CT Cup, Campbell River has won all three medals, the Gold (2015), the Bronze (2016) and now the Silver (2017). I stayed at the same hotel as the CR team and I had many compliments on how polite the players were and many people were surprised that a team was actually housed in the hotel as there was minimal noise or fuss and no complaints - ever. I want to congratulate Lee Stone on putting together another winning team this year. And I want to congratulate both Linda Spooner and Wes Roed in again creating an environment and atmosphere in Campbell River where they had about 60 fans follow them up to Creston to cheer on the team. This included 4 Alumni players who made the effort to show up on their own to cheer on the guys. I was told that one of their sponsors in Campbell River hosted the Live Video stream for each of the Campbell River games and had to bring in more staff to keep up with the number of fans showing up to watch and cheer on the team.The Richmond Sockeyes will be hosting the Cyclone Taylor Cup next year and you all need to start thinking about whether you would like to be the host for the following year when VIJHL is to host the Cyclone Taylor Cup again (2018-19).Again, Congratulations to the Campbell River Storm - players, coaches and owners for receiving the SILVER medal at the Cyclone Taylor Cup tournament. It was tremendous hockey and a great tournament.Barb ByrneVIJHL President