Always a good rivalry no matter what time of the year it is. Tonight the two face off for the first time since last season’s Interior Division Final, a series in which the Warriors would outlast the Vees over six games en route to an Interior Division championship and an RBC Cup victory.
Tonight, obviously, will have a bit of a different feel, with just one player (Desi Burgart of the Vees) playing in tonight’s game that saw any action in the series that crowned West-K their first Interior Division championship in franchise history.
The Warriors and Vees will both be icing a young lineup, check the Vees website here for some details on their roster for this evening. West Kelowna will be going with just two 19 year olds, four 16 year olds and everything in between.
West Kelowna will start 19 year old goaltender Brad Otton, who played last season in the Victoria International Junior Hockey League (VIJHL) with the Oceanside Generals and Comox Valley Glacier Kings. Matt Vernon, an 18 year old goaltender from Calgary who played with the Calgary Royals Midget AAA team last season. Name sound familiar? He is the son of former NHLer Mike Vernon, the owner of two Stanley Cup rings.
With mostly a rookie lineup taking part in tonight’s game, that doesn’t mean the intensity won’t ramp up. Take last season for instance, then Vees netminder Brendan Barry fought then Warrior Paul Lovsin in the first pre season game between the two. So really, anything can happen tonight.
For fans not making the trip to Penticton tonight, keep up to date with all the happenings at the SOEC tonight with the Warriors Twitter and Facebook for period updates. The Warriors are back in action on Friday when they host the Salmon Arm SIlverbacks at RLP. Myself and Sheldon Bank will have the call on FASTHockey.com starting at 6:55 pm. Puck drop will be slated for 7:00 pm. Check back here after tonight’s contest versus the Vees for my post game thoughts on the Warriors first pre season game.