The Lake Cowichan Royal Bank Lakers hosted an Atom hockey tournament at the Lake Cowichan Arena, November 23-25. Three other teams from around the island came to play against the Lakers on their home turf.
Although they were in the running for the lead in the tournament with two wins and one tie, the Lakers fell to the stronger Oceanside Phantoms in the final play-off game on Sunday afternoon, with a 5-3 loss.
The Lakers started the tournament off by beating the Juan de Fuca Grizzlies, 8-2, on Friday night. In that game, Kyle Hieta was named MVP and Curtis Baird won the Digger award.
In their next game, the Lakers showed some great skill and strength, and ended with a tie game of 5-5 in their match against the Oceanside Phantoms.
In the first period of the game, Oceanside scored within minutes, but the Lakers retaliated with a goal at 8:40 into the first period. Their offence was strong and gave the team another two goals, one at 13:51 minutes into the period and the third goal with just 3:27 left to play, thus bringing the score to 3-1 for the Lakers at the end of the first period.
Lakers’ Silas Mearns earned the Digger award for that game, while Noah Murdoch was named MVP.
The next game in the round robin part of the tournament was for the Lakers again, when they faced the Comox Drive on Saturday afternoon.
With a 12-0 win over the Drive, the Lakers earned a spot in the finals.
In their game against Comox, the Lakers’ MVP was Keegan McKinlay, and Kierce Nelson won the Digger award.
On Sunday afternoon the Lakers faced off against Oceanside for the second time in the tournament, this time in the finals.
It was a great game to watch, and at one point the local team held a 2-0 lead over the visiting Phantoms until Oceanside took charge of the game and held on for the win.
The final score in the game was 5-3 for Oceanside. Ryder Wise was the MVP for that game, and Taylor Elsas was the Digger in the final game for the Lakers, while the Phantoms’ Sam Jacobsen was named MVP and Caleb Gadd received the Digger award.
The final results for the tournament were: Oceanside Phantoms, first place, Royal Bank Lakers, second place, Juan De Fuca Grizzlies, third, and the Comox Valley Drive were fourth.
It was a great hockey tournament to watch and many family and friends came out to cheer the kids on.
Lakers team manager Jenn Hieta said all of the teams told her how much they enjoyed the
tournament and how much fun the players had.