By Keith Lacey
The Junior Coyotes Peewee hockey team are howling with pride after winning the bronze medal at the B.C. Peewee Tier III Hockey Championships in Dawson Creek Thursday morning.
The Junior Coyotes defeated Mission 6-4 in a hard-fought battle.
The big win comes less than a day after the South Okanagan Minor Hockey Association (SOMHA) champions lost 15-1 to the host Dawson Creek Peewees.
Junior Coyotes team manager Deb Sidwell said head coach John Seminoff, the coaching and management staff and all 14 players are thrilled to have captured the bronze medal in the 10-team competition.
“They really wanted that bronze,” she said. “We have a very happy bunch of boys and it’s going to be a much shorter drive home with those bronze medals hanging around their necks.”
The Junior Coyotes got off to a slow start Thursday morning and trailed 3-1 at one point, but took over control of the game in the second and third periods and edged Mission to claim bronze, she said.
Competing in the provincial championships and claiming a bronze medal is something these young hockey players are never going to forget, said Sidwell.
“They had a tremendous season and they are very excited to end things with a bronze medal at the provincials,” she said.
Dawson Creek was a team that did well against Tier I competition all year and there was no team that could touch them at this tournament, but the rest of the teams were very evenly matched and the Junior Coyotes matched up well against all of them, she said.
Winning the bronze medal is going to make the long trip back to the South Okanagan from Dawson Creek much easier, she said.
“We’re heading towards Williams Lake, where we’ll spend the night (Thursday) and we should be home by Friday afternoon,” she said.
Sidwell thanked all of the sponsors in Osoyoos, Oliver, Keremeos, Grand Forks and Princeton who supported the team financially so they could make the trip to provincials
The bronze medal wraps up a remarkable season in which the Junior Coyotes finished 31-5-1 in league, playoff and tournament play before heading to provincials.
Besides claiming the regional title, they also won tournaments in Vernon, Penticton and Kamloops.
Members of the Junior Coyotes include Connor Costa, Braydon Aldridge, Jacob Helms and Anton Maynard from Osoyoos; Tyler Seminoff, Lyndon Gervais, Ryland Thomson and Brent Calhoon from Oliver; Charlie Lockhart, twins Ben and Alex Edwards, Kitchner Leslie and Marcus Carney from Grand Forks/Christina Lake; Sydney Lawes and Jaeden Mullin from Princeton; and Shelby Etty from Keremeos.