Skip to content

Prince Rupert Rampage bites Wolverines in season home-opener

Full on old-fashioned hockey action complete with on-ice scuffle, injuries, penalties and home win

The Rampage tore up home ice, winning the CIHL season opener 7-2 against the Hazelton Wolverines at Prince Rupert’s Jim Ciccone Centre Arena on Oct. 8.

Even with both teams having players not able to make it to the coastal city for the game due to heavy fog blanketing the area and affecting flights, the evening puck drop at 7 p.m. led to some old-fashioned hockey, with an on ice-scuffle, penalties, injured players and a home town cheering chorus heard above the blasting airhorns to the Rampage win.

Rampage coach Roger Atchison praised the teams effort during the first game after being off the ice for the past few months.

“It was a little rusty to start, but we got our legs going in the third, and it wasn’t too bad,” he said.

“The score was reasonable. I thought they hung with us for most of the game … We had a hard time burying them until late,” the Rampage coach said of the opposition.

Wolverines coach Stu Barnes said the game was a good one, despite several players from both teams not being able to make it.

“But, we are really trying to just build our hometown program to the point where we don’t need to fly guys in. For now, we need to have those people coming in to help us with our local kids until they are old enough, big enough, fast enough and understand the league enough to take on these guys on their own.”

Barnes said three Rampage and five Wolverines were not able to land.

“… So, that’s unfortunate. We try to have enough locals, so it doesn’t affect us, But we’re definitely short-handed tonight.”

The coach said the Wolverines are numbering between 25-30 players because many team members have camp jobs requiring a bigger pool to schedule from.

“Ideally, we’d like to have four lines, so people don’t have to play tired and get hurt.”

“The final score] is not really reflective of the effort that we put out there. But, understandable our goalie got a little bit tired with a lot of shots there at the end, so long ones went in and made a bit of gap,” the Wolverines coach said.

He said that home ice for the Hazelton team was just laid in the past couple of weeks, so many players had not had a lot of time on the ice.

“I’m proud of my team … It’s a good start and we’ll only get better from here,” Barnes said.

The away team coach said the turning point in the game for him was near the end.

“We ran out of steam ran, out of gas … then we started taking penalties. So that’s basically where it fell apart. And we got a little bit of a gap in the score.”

“I think, for the most part, we played our plan, which was to be defensive and look for opportunities because we’re shorthand right off the start. But sometimes when you go into a game with a plan like that, it’s gonna be far-fetched that it will work out but here’s hoping for the best.”

K-J Millar | Editor and Journalist
Send K-J email
Like the The Northern View on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter