Competing against elite level talent against other minor ball hockey associations from western Canada, the Valley Ball Hockey Association more than held its own, winning the gold medal in one division while capturing silver medals in two others.
The Western Challenge Cup was held July 14 to 17 in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows and hosted by the Ridge Meadows Minor Ball Hockey Association.
In the U17 Gold division, goaltender Connor Morrison pitched a 30-save shutout in the championship final, a 3-0 victory over Metro.
Morrison led the tournament in both goals against (1.17 per game) and save percentage (0.950).
Caleb Boelema opened the scoring and then Landon McArthur doubled the lead with a beauty on a penalty shot.
Josh Boelema sealed the victory with an empty-net goal.
Caleb Boelema led the tournament in scoring with seven goals and 13 points in six games.
The team is made up of Josh Boelema, Jordan Desrosiers, Angus Middleton, Braeden Deslauriers, Ryan Barthelson, Andrew Jesson, Trevor Punia, Nic De Koning, Nick Grant, Jaxon Koch, Caleb Boelema, Landon McArthur, Mike Fleugal, Yunjae Boo, Jacob Parkinson, Connor Morison and Kevin Craig.
Head coach is Shawn Peters, assistant coach is Kerns Punia and manager is Amanda Barthelson.
The Valley Vipers lost 3-2 in overtime to the host Ridge Meadows squad in the U11 Silver division.
The Vipers led 2-0 after goals from Kallen Barthelson and Cameron Butson 70 seconds apart in the first period but Metro scored twice in the second period to tie things up.
“Our players battled their hearts out and I am extremely proud of my team,” said coach Brad Wheeler.
Overall, the team won five of its seven games — outscoring the competition 23-17 in the process.
Marco Oliviero led the Vipers with 10 points in seven games.
The team is made up of goalies Jordan Legault and Leah Aukema, Lachlan Curtis, Darnel Walton, Justin Wright, Marco Oliviero, Matthew Cracknell, Cody Davis, Justin Brar, Team Captain Jaxon Wheeler, Savin Sran, Hudson Koch, Justin Zandbergen, Preston Vipond, Kallen Barthelson, Joel Zandbergen and Cameron Butson.
Head coach is Brad Wheeler, assistant coaches are Dave Zandbergan, Sean Vipond and Rob Aukema, and manager is Amanda Barthelson.
Harley Cross Photography
The Valley Ball Hockey Association’s U11 team won the silver medal at the Western Challenge Cup.
And in the U15 championship final, Valley led 2-0 in the first period on goals from Ayden Power and Brayden Stewart but could not hold on to the lead, falling 3-2 to Metro in overtime.
Jaxson Koch led the Valley team in scoring with 10 points in six games while Josh Jordan was the team’s top goal scorer with six goals and nine points in six games.