The Terrace Pizza Hut Peewee rep team is riding high after a big win in a big place, taking first place in the Kelowna Tier Three tournament in a spectacular shootout win.
“The boys played their hearts out and left everything out on the ice and it showed coming home with first place,” said parent Allan Bailey.
The team, made up of 11 and 12 year olds, travelled the 15-hours to Kelowna Dec. 7 for the three-day tourney, facing off against Victoria in their first game on Friday and winning 6-5.
They tied their second game against Kamloops on Saturday 5-5 and later that day faced off against home team Kelowna, winning 8-5 and making it into the final against Winfield on Sunday.
The final game was a nail biter to say the least, back and forth with lead changes throughout the game, and went into overtime tied at six.
The 15 minutes of overtime solved nothing, so the teams headed to a shootout, with goalie Payton Fekete in net.
Mason Richey was the first shooter up for Terrace—and the only one who scored—leaving it up to goalie Fekete to secure the win.
“Our goalie had stopped all four shots in the shootout and if he stopped the fifth shot we would win,” said Peewee defenseman Greg Kennedy, over the phone while the boys were travelling home Monday afternoon. “And he came down and the guy shot and our goalie saved it.”
“Everybody was kind of a little in shock, and everybody just threw their gloves off—they were so excited and pumped,” he said.
And part of the excitement definitely comes from being a smaller community facing off against teams from bigger towns.
“Just being in the position of a small community in first place was pretty great,” said player Brandon Onstein. “I think some of the teams were shocked.”
Player Mason Richey agrees. “For a smaller community to come to a bigger community and end up winning a tournament that had some pretty good teams in there, I think that’s it right there.”