The Number 1 Auto Body Bantam ‘A’ Tyees played the roll of giant killers at the annual Tim Jardine AAA Tournament in South Delta over the weekend.
After going winless during three tough round-robin games the Tyees eliminated the number one ranked Coquitlam Chiefs with a stunning 10-5 upset in the quarter- finals. It was by far the best effort of the season for the Tyees.
“We had a game plan going in and the players executed it beautifully,” said Tyees head coach Peter Martin. “Not only that but the guys also demonstrated a willingness to compete that our opponent couldn’t match.”
Left winger Gavin Rauser went on a one man rampage, scoring six times in the victory. Tyees Travis Goodwin, Rio Massee, Austin Simper, and Grady McInnes also tallied for Campbell River.
“Gavin told us (the coaches) that he looks forward to playing the better teams – he likes the challenge,” said Martin. “His determination and inspirational leadership were evident not only in the game against Coquitlam but during the entire tournament. He showed why he’s our captain.”
Rauser recorded 12 points in five games and finished near the top in tournament scoring.
Injuries and penalties finally caught up to the Tyees in the semi-finals as they lost 8-3 to Seafair. The talented Richmond club went on the win the championship, defeating South Delta in the final.
The Tyees were down to just 12 skaters by the end of the tournament.
“We lost Rio Massee and Josh Coblenz,” said Martin. “And I know of at least three others that were playing with injuries.
The level of competition definitely took its toll over five games but I also believe we earned the respect of our opponents.”
The Tyees, however, did not come home empty handed.
They were awarded a trophy and received a loud round of applause for being selected the tournament’s most sportsmanlike team.
The Tyees resume regular season play this weekend with a road trip down Island.
The Bantam A Tyees next play the undefeated Victoria Racquet Club on Saturday and take on the Cowichan Valley Capitals in Duncan on Sunday.