Hockey night in the region

It’s March and it’s the height of hockey season for Greater Victoria fans.

It’s March and it’s the height of hockey season for Greater Victoria fans.

Many are following the Vancouver Canucks, hoping the Northwest Division leaders will make a return trip to the National Hockey League championship series, and with a little luck, score their first Stanley Cup win.

The Western Hockey League’s Victoria Royals have developed a following of their own in their first season here after replacing the ECHL Salmon Kings. At week’s end the Royals looked like a safe bet to make the playoffs, following an exciting, if somewhat of a roller-coaster regular season of major junior hockey.

But the place to be on many hockey nights in the Capital Region over the past couple of weeks has been any of the three rinks that are home to junior B teams.

Led by the Island league’s regular season champion Victoria Cougars, local teams have given diehard fans and infrequent spectators the type of entertainment that keeps ’em coming back. The always-tough Cougars are taking on Mill Bay’s Kerry Park Islanders in one semifinal, while the defending playoff champ Peninsula Panthers are battling the Saanich Braves in the other.

These high school-aged players leave little on the ice and offer up everything from tight defensive battles to high-scoring goalfests.

Fans packing Archie Browning Sports Centre in Esquimalt (Cougars), Pearkes Rec Centre in Saanich and Panorama Rec Centre in North Saanich (Panthers) know they need not shell out big dough to experience exciting, inspiring games. It doesn’t hurt that the price of a hot dog or popcorn is modest as well.

On the West Shore, the struggles of the junior A Victoria Grizzlies this year have been somewhat counteracted by news that the area will get a junior B team back for next season.

Overall, there’s plenty of signs that hockey remains a passion in the Capital Region, no matter who’s playing the game.

Just Posted

Nearly a dozen coonhound puppies and their mother to reunite at Saanich park

Dogs’ former foster family initiated one-year reunion plans

Trio brings roller skating fever to Greater Victoria

Roller Skate Victoria offers workshops, summer camps and more

Westin Bear Mountain hotel sold to local businessman and entrepreneur

Ecoasis will maintain responsibility of golf and tennis operations and developable lands

Public warned of night firing exercises in Saanich after evidence of trespassing

Routine shooting practice to take place at Heals Range from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Sunday

Riders roll to help Island hospices

$240,000 raised so far for this weekend’s seventh annual Cycle of Life Tour

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Bank of Canada lowers qualifying rate used in mortgage stress tests

Home sales softened last year after the federal government introduced new stress test rules for uninsured mortgages

Port Hardy RCMP cleared in arrest that left man with broken ribs, punctured lung: IIO

The IIO noted the matter will not be referred to crown counsel for consideration of charges.

Most Read