All year long, Canadian Sports School Hockey League (CSSHL) rivals Delta Hockey Academy and Yale have been fighting in big-time tournaments, and Delta has been prevailing.
However, Yale kick-started their 2016 with the team’s first major tournament win of the year, knocking off Delta 4-1.
Four teams remained perfect entering the knockout stage at the John Reid Memorial tournament in St. Albert, Atla.
Delta, Burnaby, Yale and Notre Dame boast 3-0 records and have advanced to the next round at one of the most prestigious Bantam tournament’s in Canada.
Chosen by HockeyNow readers as the top minor hockey tournament in the country, the John Reid Memorial brings 16 teams from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and a few U.S. states. Last year, hundreds of scouts flocked to the northern Alberta town, and it was no different this year.
Six of the top 10 WHL Bantam prospects played, and plenty more players who will warrant top-three rounds consideration made a case for themselves heading into this year’s Bantam Draft.
The 16-team tournament was broken up into four divisions: Reid – Skybox Grill Division, Reid – Kal-Tire Division, Iginla – C2 Homes Division, and Iginla – SVS Groups Division.
Delta held a 4-0 edge in their matchups this season, outscoring Yale 18-12, but 2016 proved to be a fresh start for the Lions. Harrison Blaisdell’s late second period goal was the winner, while Carter Anderson added an insurance marker, his second of the game, in the third enroute to being name game MVP. Yale added an empty netter as well.
Delta had the top offense, scoring 33 goals in six games, but only managed one in the final. Goalie Alex Rolphe stood on his head in the win for Yale. Win the win in the finals, Yale capped the tournament with a 6-0 record and their first major tournament win of the 2015-2016 campaign.
Entering the knockout stage, four teams remained perfect: Yale, Delta, Notre Dame and Burnaby. Each had a tough matchup in the quarterfinals.
Saturday morning’s first game pitted Sherwood Park (2-1) against Notre Dame (3-0). Sherwood Park led 3-0 heading into the game’s final 10 minutes before the Hounds poured in on and scored three in that time frame, including the tying goal with just 43 seconds left. Despite the rally, Sherwood Park wouldn’t let the game slip away, as Ethan Browne scored the winner in overtime, giving Sherwood a 4-3 win..
Delta’s offense would not slow down in the quarters as they pummeled the Los Angeles Jr. Kings 6-0. Dylan Cozens notched a hattrick, while Carson Hopwo, Jalen Price and Arshdeep Bains each had three points. The Kings goaltender, Dustin Wolf, faced 60 shots in the game.
Thanks to two third-period goals by top prospect Josh Williams, including a shorthanded game winner, Yale Hockey Academy was able to knock-off Pursuit of Excellence 4-3. POE scored with just over two minutes left to draw within one, but couldn’t get another past Blake Wood, who made 30 saves in the win.
Lethbridge came into their matchup with the Burnaby Winter Club upset about the loss to Yale the night before and were able to tap into that anger for a 6-3 win. Burnaby’s 18 PIMs gave Lethbridge plenty of chances, setting up the Golden Hawks for four powerplay goals. Top prospect Bowen Byram had three assists, while Ethan Klemen added a goal and two assists.
Four of the top six teams in Western Canada made the semifinals, with two teams from British Columbia and two from Alberta.
Sherwood Park got out to a quick start over Yale and things looked good, but Yale stormed back, scoring five straight goals to win 6-2. Harrison Blaisdell’s two goals propelled Yale into the final.
In the Delta-Lethbridge semifinal, Delta worked over their Albertan opponent, winning 5-0 behind a 21-save shutout by Roman Basran. Lukas Svejkovsky had three points in the win.
Top Forward and Tournament MVP: Lukas Svejkovsky (Delta)
Top Defenceman: Bowen Byram (Lethbridge)
Top Goalie: Blake Wood (Yale)
F. Sasha Mutala
F. Josh Williams
F. Lane Goodwin
D. Bowen Byram
D. Connor Horning
G. Blake Wood
F. Ethan Browne
F. Lukas Svejkovsky
F. Dylan Cozens
D. Matthew Robertson
D. Jeremie Hebert
G. Dustin Wolf
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