Ice may be out in the North Island’s rinks, but that hasn’t stopped several young North Island players from enjoying some spirited hockey competition.
The West Coast Storm, a Comox Valley-based squad comprised of 2002-born players from across the North Island, claimed second place in the Silver Division of the recent Mainland Cup Tournament, played in rinks in the greater Vancouver area.
Luke Gage, Ryan Patterson and Liem Wadhams of Port Hardy and Rhys Dutcyvich and Mathew Saunders of Port McNeill, who all skated for the 2012-13 North Island Eagles atom development team, each collected medals with the Storm in the three-day tournament.
The squad, accompanied by Eagles coach Marty Gage, practiced beginning in March for the tourney along with players from Powell River, Courtenay/Comox, Campbell River and Port Alberni.
The Storm finished 1-1-1 in round-robin play in the Mainland Cup to earn placing in the Silver Division, then gained a berth in the final with a thrilling, 6-5 shootout win in the divisional semifinals.
The North Island skaters will continue to travel and work out with the squad in Comox in preparation for their final spring tourney, the May 24-26 Canlan Memorial Cup in Vancouver, before taking a break for the summer.