The Castlegar Rebels have won the KIJHL Kootenay Conference title after sweeping the Golden Rockets in four games, winning game four in Golden 3 – 2 on Tuesday, March 19.
The Rebels got past the Spokane Braves in five games and then the Beaver Valley Nitehawks in a thrilling seven-game series before facing the Rockets.
The Rebels outscored Golden 17 – 4 during the series and have earned a week-long break before going after the KIJHL Championship on Tuesday, March 26 against either the North Okanagan Knights or the Osoyoos Coyotes.
There was no scoring in the first but forward Kody Disher put the Rebels on the board at 17:15 of the second period, with assists from Matt Reed and Stuart Walton. Bryan Lubin then added another at 15:26 from Hunter Jenerou to take a two-goal lead.
What proved to be the game (and conference) winner came on the power play from Brenden Heinrich at 19:35 of the third, with assists coming from Erik Alden and Jamie Vlanich.
The Rockets fought back valiantly with goals from Blake Roney (14:48 – PP) and Brad Orr (5:57) but could not level the game.
Jordan Gluck got to enjoy the feeling of a conference title win in net for the Rebels, turning aside all but two of Golden’s 26 shots.
James Leonard played 59:37 of game four, stopping three of four power plays from the Rebels while facing 19 shots.
Game four of the Okanagan-Shuswap Conference, between the North Okanagan Knights and Osoyoos Coyotes, went to the Knights 5 – 1 who now lead that seven-game series three games to one.
Game five for the Knights and Coyotes is Thursday, March 21 in Armstrong at 7 p.m.