The Fraser Valley East major bantam Thunderbirds had a great opening weekend.
The brand new team played in a Jamboree, held Sept. 6-8) at the Abbotsford Rec Centre, getting one win, one loss and one tie in three games.
“I was happy for the most part with how the boys competed,” said head coach and Chilliwackian Nathan Martz. “Defensively we did a good job only allowing five goals all weekend.
“It will take us some time to gel on the offensive end but we have the potential to score a lot of goals.”
The team is anchored by goaltenders Jonathan Mao (Langley) and Jason Roth (Chilliwack).
The first ever goal in their inaugural season was scored by Abbotsford’s Ryan Pretty. Langley’s Jordan Yuan drew the assist, then scored one of his own, set up by Grayson Pamplin (Aldergrove) and Mitchell Kehler (Langley). His tally with four seconds on the clock earned the T-Birds a 2-2 draw with the Vancouver North East Chiefs.
The T-Birds got their first ever win in their next outing, beating the Vancouver North West Giants 3-1.
Fraser Valley too early penalties against the Giants and trailed 1-0.
Yuan got his team even, with an assist to Hayden Hall (Langley). Late in the third period, Chilliwack’s Ben Dods chipped the puck up to Pretty, who raced in and lasered the puck past the goalie for the game winner.
Chilliwack’s Dayton Abbott fought through three players to bury his first ever bantam goal into an empty net.
The third game was another low scoring affair with the Thunderbirds taking their first loss of the year. Hayden Hall scored the lone T-Birds goal in a 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Canadians, scoring on a shorthanded breakaway midway through the second period.
Fraser Valley has two exhibition games this weekend against the interior powerhouse Program of Excellence (POE).
Both games are at the Abbotsford Rec Centre with start times of 2:45 p.m. on Saturday and 9:45 a.m. on Sunday.
The Fraser Valley major midget Thunderbirds get rolling for real Sept. 21-22, diving into regular season action with a home-and-home versus the Vancouver North East Chiefs.
The team’s roster includes Chilliwack skaters Dylan Brooks, Blake Bryce, Zach Feaver.
The Fraser Valley minor midget Thunderbirds get moving the following weekend (Sept. 28-29) with a pair of games against the Thompson Blazers.
Chilliwack skaters on the roster include Owen Barclay, Brayden Campton, Layne Jensen and Owen Hopcott.