Three-quarters of the teams have punched their tickets to the Cyclone Taylor Cup that starts here in Revelstoke next week.
As hosts of the tournament, despite losing to Princeton Posse in game six of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL), the Revelstoke Grizzlies were an automatic seed in the tournament. Recently, the Oceanside General earned their spot in the tournament with a playoff victory over the Saanich Predators in the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL). For the Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL), the Delta Ice Hawks earned their spot with a win over the Ridge Meadows Flames to claim the league title.
VANCOUVER ISLAND JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE
The Generals made the VIJHL playoffs after an outstanding season, topping the league with 86 points in the regular season and a record of 41–3–2–2.
Taking their fourth VIJHL title –their first since 2009– the Oceanside Generals beat the Saanich Predators last night (April 7). To their credit, the Predators came back after a brutal 6–2 loss in the first game on Oceanside turf at Oceanside Place, followed by a second loss in Saanich at the George Pearkes arena.
Continuing to battle, the Predators took the win in the next two games to tie the series. The Generals managed to bounce back, going on their own two game tear, which gave them the lead in the series.
The playoff final last night needed two extra frames to split the two teams. In the end, it was Carter Johnson’s goal for the Generals 12:28 into double overtime, assisted by Evan Dyce, to break the tie.
PACIFIC JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE
After finishing second in the regular season (48-35-13-0) behind the Langley Trappers, the Delta Ice Hawks were the team that was crowned at the end of the PJHL playoffs after beating the Ridge Meadows Flames in seven games. It was their third PJHL title.
The battle against the Flames was hard fought. Both teams claimed away wins early in the series, tying it at 2–2. The Flames claimed game five back in Delta, and the Ice Hawks won back in Ridge Meadows at the Cam Neely Arena Planet Ice for game six.
The teams went head-to-head in the final on neutral ground at the George Preston Arena in Langley, home to the Langley Trappers.
There was little difference between the two teams in the final played on April 2nd, forcing an extra frame to decide the game. In the end, it was Kyle Robinson’s goal at 6:11 in overtime, assisted by Yuji Akimoto and Austin Kofler, that decided the game.
PJHL CHAMPS 🥇 pic.twitter.com/yPWgTs08eB— Delta Ice Hawks (@deltaicehawks) April 3, 2023
The Ice Hawks were the first team (apart from Revelstoke) to get their spot in the Cyclone Taylor Cup. The final game of their series against the Flames finished April 2nd, making them the most rested team heading into the tournament. The Ice hawks hosted the tournament last year, but it was the Langley Trappers who took home the cup.
KOOTENAY INTERNATIONAL JUNIOR HOCKEY LEAGUE
The KIJHL representative will be the last team to be decided for the tournament.
The Princeton Posse currently lead the Kimberley Dynamiters in the series with 3 wins to the Dynamiters’ 2. The Posse have a chance to take the series tonight, but it will require a win away from home in Kimberley at the Kimberley Civic Centre. The puck drops tonight (April 7) at 7 p.m. MDT.
CYCLONE TAYLOR CUP
All teams converge in Revelstoke on Thursday, April 13. The Revelstoke Review will provide updates on the results of the games.