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Campbell River Storm re-signs member of leadership core

Few possible scenarios emerge for upcoming VIJHL schedule
Owen Christensen lines up a shot during regular season VIJHL action at the Brindy between the Campbell River Storm and the Peninsula Panthers on Sept. 14, 2019. Christensen has re-signed with the Storm for a third season and plans to chase a VIJHL Championship. File photo by Marissa Tiel – Campbell River Mirror

A member of the Campbell River Storm’s on-ice leadership crew continues to eye a championship.

Forward Owen Christensen re-signed with the Junior B squad for the upcoming Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL) season, Head Coach and General Manager Lee Stone said today.

“I think the vets returning who have played through the last two seasons, and what we’ve gone through as a group, we will not allow anything else but a Championship,” said Christensen in a press release.

It will be the 20 year-old’s third season with the Storm. He first joined the team in 2018, recording 25 points (14 goals and 11 assists) over the regular season. The forward, who wore an “A” on his jersey last season followed up with even better numbers. In the 2019/20 season, he logged 31 points (11 goals and 20 assists).

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Stone said Christensen plays at a “high pace” and can play all three forward positions.

“I believe he will have a breakthrough year offensively this season,” said Stone. “His speed and willingness to drive the net and go to the dirty areas puts him in great positions to create offence and his tenacity makes him a great defensive force in our own zone.”

In July, the VIJHL released a few possible schedule scenarios depending on the startup date.

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The first scenario is a Sept. 7 start date with a 48-game schedule and three best-of-seven series.

Scenario two would see a 40-game regular season with an Oct. 12 start and the same playoff format.

The other two scenarios float the possibility of modified playoff schedules. One has a Nov. 16 start for a 40-game regular season. Playoffs would start the third week of March with the top two North Division teams facing each other and the top two South Division teams facing each other in a best of three series. Then, the winner of the North Division would face the winner of the South Division in a best-of-three final.

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The final option would have a 32-game regular season starting Dec. 14 with the same modified short playoff format.

While Stone would love to start up in September, he said “first and foremost the safety of our players, staff, volunteers and community is of the utmost importance.”

He said a start later than September or October would make for a “challenging” playoff format.

His team, including Christensen, will be in Campbell River Aug. 14 to start preparing on and off the ice in “creative ways” until teams get the go-ahead to return to sport.


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