Sports in BRIEF

Can Am race, KIJHL playoffs and Express at provincials highlighted

Can Am Race at Apex

Apex Mountain is hosting a Can Am Race and Osisko Speed Camp March 17-23.

Karin Pasin, chief of administration for the race and Apex Ski Club board member, said this is the season’s biggest race at the under-16 level.

“During the speed camp, the athletes have a chance to learn the technical aspects of racing a Super G speed event,” said Pasin. “Former Canadian national team member, Jeff Hume, will be on hand to mentor the kids and offer coaching tips.”

Olympian Morgan Pridy of Whistler, who placed 20th in 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, has raced the Apex Downhill and Super G track and credits it as the one that gave him a solid foundation in these speed events.

Races begin March 20 and athletes in this event must qualify.  Along with B.C., Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and the USA send their top athletes to compete in Super G, Giant Slalom, and Slalom events.  A total of 200 racers will be competing. Representing Apex Ski Club are Reece Howden, Belle Grant and Ella Pasin.

KIJHL playoffs

The Osoyoos Coyotes defeated the North Okanagan Knights 7-4 to win their best-of-seven series in the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League playoffs 4-1. Penticton’s Lawrence Langan made 24 saves in the win, while Colten Braid, Luc Gradisar, Aaron Azevedo, Troy Maclise, Penticton’s Rory Neary, Colin Chmelka and Rainer Glimpel scored for the Coyotes. Chmelka’s tally was the winner. The Coyotes put themselvse in position to clinch the series following a 10-0 win in Armstrong Tuesday. Neary, who won a Okanagan Mainline Amateur Hockey Association championship with Penticton in 2012, potted a hat-trick for the Coyotes.  Penticton’s Jackson DeMatos had a goal and an assist and goalie Langan made 23 saves. DeMatos and Langan won a midget provincial championship for Penticton last year. Another Penticton product, Michael Crawford, has one goal and three points in six games. Neary’s brother Liam has one point in six games.

The Kimberley Dynamiters have a 3-2 series lead on the Creston Valley Thunder Cats. The Thunder Cats won Game 5 4-2. Penticton’s Eric Buckley had a goal and two points, while Tyson Klingspohn collected an assist in Game 4. Buckley has four goals and seven points in six playoff games, while Klingspohn has two goals and seven points in nine games.

The Beaver Valley Nitehawks have a 3-2 series lead on the Nelson Leafs. The Kamloops Storm swept the 100 Mile House Wranglers with a 3-1 win. Former Penticton Vee Brock Balson is second in playoff scoring for his hometown Storm with three goals and 12 points.

Express girls finish 12th

The KVR Express Grade 8 girls basketball team finished 12th in the Invitational Provincial Championship held in Pitt Meadows last weekend. The Express, which entered the championship as the 13th seed, won one of four games in the 16-team championship, their lone win 31-27 against Westsyde.

“The girls were fired up. We had a good idea of what to expect from them and were ready,” said Express coach René Aubin. “We knew we could get a provincial tournament win if we played our best.”

The Express opened with a 60-18 loss to WA Fraser, the eventual provincial champs.

“I knew they were going to be good,” said Aubin. “They were the regular season champs from the Fraser Valley. Our girls competed very well in the game but the Fraser team was simply too long, athletic and experienced. We did well considering the skills they brought. Our girls battled the entire time and never quit.”

The Express victory against Westsyde followed that game. The Express then lost to Argyle, which placed ninth, 46-20, and to Gordon Head, which finished 11th, 30-22. Britney Young of the Express earned player of the game honours against Westsyde.

“We had several referees, coaches and spectators comment on our solid defensive habits and the competitive, no quit attitude of our girls,” said Aubin, who felt his team represented the South Okanagan respectfully. “I’m very proud of the accomplishments these girls have had this season.”



Penticton Western News