Penticton’s bantam Heat Barn Burner lacrosse tournament unfolded differently than planned.
Dan Chetner, coach of the Heat bantam advanced team, hoped to host an A2 and B tournament, but didn’t get enough A teams to apply aside from Richmond. A2 is one level below the highest in the province. With Richmond their only competition, the teams played three times with the Heat coming out on top 7-6, 4-2 and 7-2.
“It was a good measuring stick for us against the A2 team,” said Chetner. “Richmond is one of the stronger teams.
“It was a real good opportunity for the players to compare playing at those two different calibres,” he continued. “We have made a commitment to play lots of A1 teams. It’s now at the time where we are thinking about provincial championships.”
Chetner said they could declare themselves an A1 and go to provincials. If they choose the A2 path, they enter playoffs with a chance to advance to provincials. Chetner said most of his players enjoyed playing Richmond since it gave them a more competitive feel.
“We’re not able to achieve the same level of success on scoreboard as we do at A2,” he said.
When asked about attracting more teams for the tournament, Chetner said it has to do with timing. He has experimented with different weekends over the 10 years he has organized the tournament. He said they competed with a tournament on Vancouver Island as a Mission squad chose to go there instead of Penticton. Chetner said it’s the first time there has been an issue attracting teams.
The B side had seven teams, including the Heat, which finished sixth. Their lone win, 5-4, came in their final game against Langley. The Heat lost 8-3 to Nicola Valley, 4-2 to Richmond and 9-2 against Surrey.The Heat bantam advanced team’s next game is at Memorial Arena Saturday at 4:30 p.m. against North Okanagan.
Midget Heat gets bronze
The Heat midget team finished third in the Richmond Roadrunners tournament May 17-18. The Heat defeated Delta No. 1 9-8 on a last minute goal by Brett Van Os and beat Delta No. 2 in convincing fashion, 7-1. Their other wins were 6-5 against Port Moody and Saanich, 7-2. The semifinal pitted the Heat in a rematch against Delta No.1, losing 10-9.
The Heat is hosting a 10-team Barnburner tournament June 6-8 at Memorial Arena.