Physical game helps bantam Vees win

The Penticton Murray GM Vees capped their tournament with a win.

Penticton bantam netminder Andrew Howells gets a toe on this shot by a Kamloops Blazer forward to help his team to victory in the final game of the weekend Bantam Tier 2 hockey game Sunday at Memorial Arena. Penticton finished with a win

The Penticton Murray GM Vees capped off their bantam Tier 2 tournament with a 3-2 win over Kamloops.

The Vees placed 11th with a win, two losses and a tie. In the win, Kai Espenhain, Brennan Nelson and Finn Halladay, provided the offence.

“It was a good game, but it was kind of hard for me because I couldn’t skate, but I wanted to keep playing,” said Olsen, who was suspended the first two games and also played injured. “It was nice to get the win even though it was for second-last.”

The Vees opened with a 4-1 loss to Port Moody. Espenhain was the scorer, while Kieran Simpson scored the lone tally in a 5-1 loss to Langley. Nelson found the back of the net again, as well as Halladay in a 2-2 tie with Campbell River.

Vees assistant coach Chad DeLeeuw said of the four games, they played solid in three. The 5-1 loss the morning of Nov. 5 was disappointing as DeLeeuw said they were not mentally sharp. The three teams (Port Moody, Langley and Campbell River) played in round robin all played in the semifinals.

“That was our main goal in the tournament was to play the stronger teams that we knew were coming in and hopefully matched up well,” he said. “Two of those three games we match up well, but couldn’t get the W’s. It was a pretty good weekend overall.”

DeLeeuw added they were playing with a shortened roster with two lines for half of their games so they kept shifts short.

“When we played physical and finished our checks, it kind of wears the other teams down and creates turnovers that definitely helped a lot,” he said. “In the first couple of games we weren’t finishing our checks too much and it did lead to turnovers.”

DeLeeuw added the main objective was playing the body, but playing disciplined at the same time. The Vees kept things simple in their final game.

In other minor hockey action, the Penticton Pacific Rim Equipment peewee Tier 3 Vees lost 16-0 to Winfield on Nov. 6, while the Kal-Tire atom rec No. 1 Vees (The Punishers) defeated the South Okanagan 12-0.