The local Chase HEAT managed to lose on the road, win at home and get a point in a double overtime loss in front of the fans at the Chaos Castle. There aren’t too many other scenarios a team could manage in a span of 5 days. Add to that the opposition was some of the best in the KIJHL and 3 points out of 6 is a decent outcome, or is it?
Forrest Gump and his box of chocolates would have a hay day analyzing the three outcomes. It was an emotional period experienced by fans, volunteers, staff and the players, a stumble, a step up and finally a trip.
So, Tuesday night and a meeting in the central Cariboo versus the 100 Mile House WRANGLERS. In a reversal of roles the HEAT tried to out wrangle the WRANGLERS and after 52 penalty minutes discovered it didn’t work. The Cariboo Cowboys managed 3 powerplay goals and that was more then enough to claim a 4-1 win. 4 ½ minutes in Colton Nikiforuk struck gold from Rhys Lepine. What followed was a circus of absurdity as lazy penalty after lazy penalty set the table for defeat.
Friday night in the Village our friends the Kelowna CHIEFS paid a visit to the Art Holding Memorial Arena. At the outset of the game a brief tribute to the late great Grant Sheridan, owner/governor/general manager of the CHIEFS was presented. Grant passed at 47 in July, he was a visionary for the future of the KIJHL and a close ally of the HEAT. He will truly be missed.
In a turn around performance, the HEAT allowed the visitors an opening man advantage goal. The 1stperiod ended 1-0 visitors. In the 2ndthe local muskets fired a trio of volleys past one of the best goalies in the KIJHL. Brandon Gremaud aided by Haden Nordick and Gavin Mattey, followed by Luke Recchi assisted by Cam Watson. Hayden Wiebe popped the 3rdtally in from Breckin Erichuk and Nordick, after 40 minutes 3-1 for Chase. In the final stanza Wiebe earned star of the contest with his second goal of the night from Caleb Biensch and Trevor Kennedy.
This one went in the books as a 4-1 win over very good competition.
After a stumble and a step up, we now arrive at another misstep or trip. A Saturday night special on November 9thfeaturing the Doug Birks Division leading Revelstoke GRIZZLIES. Faced once again with excellent competition the visiting Mountain Mecca Bears roar off to a 3 goal lead on 5 shots in the first 3 minutes and 25 seconds. Having dug a deep hole in the hopes of success the HEAT pop in a powerplay goal from Evan Hughes assisted by Nikiforuk and Mattey. The GRIZZLIES add one to their lead, its 4-1 after 20 minutes. In the 2ndMattey from Biensch followed by Erichuk on the man advantage from Nikiforuk and Hughes, draws Chase to within one. However, before 40 minutes is done, the Stoke lads add to their total, its now 5-3. In the wild west 3rd, Erichuk from Haden and Corson Nordick gets the HEAT close. Watson ties the game on a blast assisted by Brett Alexander. Mattey then bulges the twine from Evan Vinterlik and Watson and the locals take the lead. The GRIZZLIES find a way to pop a counter and regulation play ends 6-6. In double overtime the visitors stick a dagger in the hearts of players and fans with the game winner, 7-6. A single point is earned from the 60 minute tie.
The HEAT visit Nelson and Castlegar next weekend on a two game road trip to the West Kootenays. The next clash at the local Chaos Castle is Saturday the 23rdversus the POSSE from Princeton.
Heat Beat: Saturday night the game commenced with a colour party from the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 107-Chase. All in attendance took a moment to respect and honour our veterans and the sacrifices made on our behalf. The HEAT for a 3rdyear are wearing camouflage jerseys for the month of November. At months end they will be auctioned off with the proceeds going to the Poppy Fund to assist local veterans.
Never forget the courage, the love, the hope given to us by those who survived and those who did not. LEST WE FORGET.