There was no stoppage time between whistles, no hitting and no full rosters but there were are a handful of northwestern residents having a great old time last weekend as the Prince Rupert Oldtimers hosted their annual early November tournament, to the tune of six men’s under-50 teams, three over-50 teams and four women’s squads.
A point-system determined the winners over the weekend where eight points were up for grabs each game. Two for winning each period (made up of two separate 25-minute halves), two for least amount of penalty minutes and two more for the win (and one for a tie).
Friday kicked off the tourney, explained Oldtimers’ representative Garin Gardiner, masterfully organized by John and Amy Vatcher and Sheri Pringle.
“The three of them organized it and they really stepped it up this year,” said Gardiner after his A & G Autobody team defeated Terrace 3-2 on Sunday.
The men’s under-50 teams included Joe’s Auto Body Repair, the A & G Silverbacks, two recreational league teams from the Prince Rupert Pick-up Hockey League and teams from Terrace and Kitimat.
The 50+ division featured three teams: Rupert, Kitimat and Terrace and the women’s division saw Terrace, Smithers and the P.R. Raiders White and Raiders Black go head-to-head.
During Sunday’s match, Gardiner’s Silverbacks got the lead early when a cross-feed pass found an A & G forward who put it home, streaking down the right-wing.
Terrace quickly got one back, and another when the squad scored two goals in the next 10 minutes of play, giving Terrace the two points for winning the first frame.
It was the second half that saw A & G come on strong however as Gordan Armstrong wired home a shot that went through the five-hole of Terrace’s netminder 10 seconds into the period just as Terrace had regained their man in the penalty box.
The 3-2 winning goal came by way of Davey Jones who wristed a shot that cleanly beat the goalie glove-side and put the Rupert side up for good.
“He’s a strong player. He played well for us all weekend. He’s scored some big goals. He’s a horse out there,” said Gardiner of Jones.
“Same with Gord Armstrong. He can skate like the wind and he keeps going all the time.”
On Saturday night, all the teams came together with their families and attended a dance complete with food and drink at the civic centre.
While a few teams had to bow out due to the tournament’s conflict with Halloween, Gardiner stated that each team that came out, including the two rec-league teams from the Prince Rupert Pick-Up Hockey League had fun.
“So far, from what I’ve watched, everybody’s had a really good time. The guys on the [opposing] bench said they really enjoy coming down to Rupert. It’s one of the best tournaments in the northwest,” Gardiner added.
Next up for the Oldtimers will be the Christmas Cup on Sunday, Dec. 21.