This past Friday the 24th the best team in the KIJHL paid a visit to the Art Holding Memorial Arena. The defending league champion Revelstoke GRIZZLIES made it past our mini avalanche on the edge of town to face the HEAT. It’s always a test of where you stack up in the league’s who’s who when the elite drop by for their last regular season visit. During the festivities there were enough run-away trains on single tracks to keep fans glued to the action. Both teams delivered some earth-shaking slobber knockers to the opposition. Getting caught with your head down was an occupational disaster. There were lots of dangles and dishes, full volume forays and snipes with these two skilled teams, but solid hitting that knocked the spit out you was also featured. In brief, the GRIZZLIES A game was too much for the HEAT B game. To beat the best, you need everyone healthy and 60 minutes of hard work.

The railroaders from Revelstoke scored three times, two on the man advantage in less then 11 minutes. “Captain Crunch” Cam Watson gave the locals hope on the powerplay from Brandon Gremaud and Matthew Poole, after 20 minutes it was 3-1. In the 2nd the Grizzlies counted a couple more goals for a 5-1 lead. In the 3rd their powerplay iced this contest, the final 6-1 for the visitors. For those watching it was a lesson in what it takes to win a championship.

Saturday night the 25th the HEAT travelled to Armstrong to face the North Okanagan KNIGHTS. Entertaining Jacob Biensch scored in the 1st, assisted by Jayden Russell and older brother Caleb Biensch. In the 2nd the game was tied up before Gavin Mattey got his first of the night from Caleb Biensch and Danton L’Heureux. Cameron McKenzie made it 3-1 from Luke Recchi and Corson Nordick and then the KNIGHTS popped in a powerplay goal. After 40 minutes it was 3-2. Mattey got his 2nd of this contest from Breckin Erichuk and Hayden Wiebe early in the 3rd, but North Oak made it a 1 goal game once again. Marino Bordin sealed the deal with an empty net tally to send Chase home on the bus with a 5- 3 win.

The HEAT hosts the Osoyoos Coyotes Friday the 31st and the following evening slide into Revelstoke to meet the GRIZZLIES. The makeup game for the postponed New Year’s Eve clash with the Kamloops STORM happened Tuesday the 28th and will be reported next week.

Heat Beat: The sick and wounded blight that has not helped the HEAT in 2020 continues, but good times will be returning very soon. One of the few highlights on Friday got the loudest cheer of the night from fans and teammates. Matteo Bordin a 15-year-old playing in his first KIJHL game for the Chase HEAT laid on a serious slobber knocker that created a huge buzz. Sometimes that’s all it takes to make something special for all those in attendance. See you Friday!

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