It’s officially hockey season in Penticton.
After a weekend full of NHL young stars action at the South Okanagan Events Centre, the Penticton Vees return to the ice this Friday, Sept. 23, to kick off the 2022-23 B.C. Hockey League campaign.
Just months removed from capturing the Fred Page Cup, the Vees will welcome the Trail Smoke Eaters to the SOEC for the team’s season opener. Before the puck drops, though, there’s some unfinished business that needs to be taken care of.
Penticton will raise four different banners from its historic 2021-2022 season at the arena prior to the 7 p.m. showdown:
• Interior Division regular season championship
• Ron Boileau Trophy (best regular-season record league-wide)
• Ryan Hatfield Memorial Trophy (Interior Division playoff champions)
• Fred Page Cup BCHL championship
The first 500 fans through the doors on Friday night will receive a season-long fridge magnet schedule. Single-game tickets for adults are $17, with seniors set to be charged $15. Youth aged 19 and under get in for free.
On Saturday, Sept. 24, the Vees will host the Cranbrook Bucks. Puck drop is set for 6 p.m.
Penticton defeated Trail in five games during the playoffs’ opening round last season, on route to its Fred Page Cup appearance. The Smoke Eaters were the only squad to hand the Vees a postseason loss in 2022.
Five weeks later, the Vees would sweep the Nanaimo Clippers in the finals to capture the franchise’s 13th Fred Page Cup victory.