There was a unique feeling in the air for Peninsula Panthers forward Carson Harris as he warmed up before Saturday night’s (Sept. 16) game at the Rod Brind’Amour Arena.
“It was definitely special coming down here on Friday nights when I was little, 100 per cent” the 18-year-old said. “I’m definitely looking forward to seeing some people I haven’t seen in a little bit.”
Teammate Ahron Calalay said similar sentiments before game time as well.
“I’m super pumped for this,” the rookie forward said. “It’s a little exciting, and a little bittersweet as well, for sure. I loved watching the Storm growing up, it was one of my best childhood memories.”
The two are just some of the five players on the Peninsula Panthers roster who hail from Campbell River. The others are on the defensive side of the ice: defencemen Gavin Mowat and Jason Sekulich, as well as goaltender Tanner Ferrill. Ferrill got the nod to start in net versus Campbell River on Saturday evening.
When speaking about his Campbell River quintet, Panthers coach and general manager Tyler Stanton sees it as eyeing talent, regardless of city.
“The biggest thing for us and our organization is to have good kids, no matter where they are from,” said Stanton. “This year it happened to be Campbell River.”
Stanton had high praises for the rookie foursome as well.
“We’re happy to make a home for them here. Ahron, Jason, Gavin and Tanner, all rookies, have been exponential to our success so far. All first year players, even though they have had some experience with the Storm. They have been tremendous assets and we’re lucky to have them.”
Unfortunately for the Panthers, it didn’t go their way on this night. Going 0-for-5 on the power play, a pair of early goals in the first period doomed Peninsula, as they fell 7-0. Ferrill even got the hook after allowing all seven goals on 29 shots.
Still, the loss didn’t dampen Harris’ spirits. He’s looking forward to some time with his family.
“I get to spend tonight sleeping in my bed at home,” said Harris. “I know that for sure.”