The Campbell River Tyees welcomed some of the best 17-year-old hockey players in B.C. for the 2022 U18 Tier II Provincial Championship last week (March 20-23).
As host, the local team had a bye to the tournament, but the Tyees earned its spot winning the Vancouver Island banner a couple weeks previous.
“We belonged there 100 per cent,” said media coordinator Alex McIntosh.
Squads from all over the province took part. Trail, Fort St. John, Williams Lake, West Vancouver, Sidney, Kelowna, and Delta all sent teams.
Campbell River was able to snag a 6-3 win against Williams Lake, but that was the Tyees only victory in a tough draw, so the team was unable to move onto the medal stage.
The local community’s support was impressive, McIntosh noted.
“There was so many people involved behind the scenes running the day-to-day of the tournament,” she said.
“We’ve got many people who had no association with the team stepping up to run the time clock, monitor the penalty box, play music, run the raffle tables, and do the 50/ 50 draws.”
The Campbell River Storm also aided in ensuring the games were broadcast on hockeytv.com, so people could watch from the comfort of their homes.
McIntosh said the competition was an emotional one for many of the players.
“It’s a pretty big deal for the boys,” she said. “This is the last year many of them will play together, and a lot of them have been on the same teams since they were five.
“There was some crying and hugging, and some, ‘I’m going to miss you, bro.’”