The team that booted the Chilliwack Chiefs from the playoffs and won the BCHL championship has just been crowned Western Canadian kings.
The West Kelowna Warriors trounced the Alberta Junior Hockey League’s Brooks Bandits 6-0 Saturday night to claim the Crescent Point Energy Western Canada Cup.
The Warriors secured their spot in the Royal Bank Cup national championship tournament that starts this weekend and continues through May 22 in Lloydminster, AB.
Bryan Basilico, Nick Rutigliano and ex-Chief Garrett Forster scored first period goals for the Warriors who added a Kyle Marino power play tally in the second period.
Kylar Hope and Jared Marino wrapped up the scoring in the final frame.
Keelan Williams, pressed into action against the Chiefs in the Fred Page Cup series when Matthew Greenfield was injured, stopped all 32 shots he faced to blank the Bandits.
West Kelowna is the third BCHL champ in the last four years to capture the Western Canada Cup, following in the skate-steps of the Surrey Eagles (2013) and Penticton Vees (2015).
The Warriors and Bandits may meet again at the RBC Cup, where they’ll be part of a five team field.
Other entries are the host Lloydminster Bobcats (AJHL), the Central Canada Hockey League’s Carleton Place Canadians and the Ontario Junior Hockey League’s Trenton Golden Hawks.
Follow the tourney online at hockeycanada.ca/en-ca/National-Championships/Men/National-Junior-A/2016