Penticton Heat lacrosse run to second place

The Penticton Heat came up one win short of the top spot in the Midget Barn Burner lacrosse tournament.

Taydra Koppe

Taydra Koppe

The Penticton Heat came up one win short of the top spot in the Midget Barn Burner lacrosse tournament.

Both losses for the Heat were dealt out by Port Coquitlam, one in the round robin and the next in A division final.

Dan Chetner, head coach of the Penticton Midget Heat, said his team fell flat in the first match up and gave them a better game in the final, but weren’t able to hammer home the win.

“We gave them a much better game in the final, they just had a couple of breaks. We had a short bench in the final game, we had a couple of kids sick and a kid injured,” said Chetner.  “We just ran out of gas. The kids worked hard and played a good game, had a couple of bad breaks.”

The Heat took second out of five teams with a 3-2 record in the A division, keeping their undefeated streak in local league play intact.

They faced three teams from the Lower Mainland including Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and North Shore. The Heat played Coquitlam earlier this year, but generally only see the Lower Mainland teams at tournaments.

“We had good games with both of them earlier in the year, we lost to Coquitlam in Richmond and then beat them here in Penticton, that was good,” Chetner said.  “We’re all pretty close and on any given day anybody can beat anybody.”

The Heat are nearing the end of their season with three more league games to play.

The team is preparing to head to a Canada Day tournament in Calgary featuring over 100 teams from across Canada, the U.S. and even as far as the Czech Republic. The tournament takes place all at one venue with eight playing surfaces running at the same time.

“It’s quite a spectacle, it’s a great lacrosse weekend,” Chetner said. “The timing for that is good it comes right at the end of our league play and just before our zone playoffs to determine the representative at provincials.

He said the teams success remaining undefeated locally can be attributed to the tight-knit group of players.

“Our kids have played together for several years and have worked hard to develop both their individual skills and team skills. I think the game our kids are able to play is the reason that we’re undefeated locally,” Chetner said.  “We play a better team game and we’ve got more individually skilled players.”

Chetner hopes the tournament will help propel his team into a run for the provincial title.

“We’re building towards the end of the season and have been working on our systems and our team play and so hopefully we peak at the right time,” Chetner said.