Game one of the Kootenay Conference Final between the Castlegar Rebels and Golden Rockets is tonight, Friday, Mar. 15 in the Castlegar Community Complex at 7:30 p.m.
The Rebels advanced to the final after winning their first round series against Spokane four games to one, and then edging past the defending league champions, the Beaver Valley Nitehawks, in a scintillating series ending in a game-seven, double overtime winner from Diego Bartlett on Wednesday, Mar. 13.
The best-of-seven series promises to be a good one as, so far in the playoffs, the two teams stack up quite evenly.
The Rockets have the edge in goals 48 – 45 but assists favour the Rebels 79 – 75. The Rebels have a total of just one more point (124) than the Rockets.
The Rockets have three more power play goals than the Castlegar squad (15) but have also spent 45 more minutes in the penalty box, for a total of 247 minutes. For more team / individual stats, please see www.KIJHL.ca.
Golden swept the Kimberley Dynamiters in the first round and then beat the Fernie Ghostriders four games to two, to advance to this point in the playoffs.
The Osoyoos Coyotes, who won the 2010-2011 League Championship beating the Castlegar Rebels four games to two, also take on the Okanagan Knights in the first game of the Okanagan – Shuswap Conference Final series tonight in Armstrong at the Nor-Val Centre at 7:00 p.m.
The winner of the two conference finals will compete for the KIJHL League Championship beginning Tuesday, Mar. 26.