The Prince Rupert Rampage traveled to Terrace over the weekend to compete in the Central Interior Hockey League (CIHL) 2012 Challenge Cup and lost both games they competed in.
“We played the two best teams in the league,” Jonathan Hunt, Rupert Rampage head coach and player said, adding that he was pleased with the team’s performance.
“The young guys had a lot jitters for the first game. We’re a new, fresh team, and we didn’t have a lot of ice time,” Hunt said, mentioning that there are only a few players from last year’s roster.
The Rampage played their first Challenge Cup game on Friday against the 2011-2012 Coy Cup champions — the Smithers Steelheads.
Hunt said the team played well at the beginning of the game, scoring one goal before the end of the first period.
However, the Steelheads kept firing pucks into the net, leaving the score at 10-1 for Smithers by the end of second period. The Rampage played well defensively in the third period, only allowing the Steelheads to get one more goal in.
The final score was 11-1 for the Steelheads, who went on to win the 2012 Challenge Cup.
On Saturday the Rampage faced off against Kitimat’s team the Ice Demons, who won the Challenge Cup last season.
Hunt said Prince Rupert came out strong in the start of the game, scoring two goals in the beginning of the first period. Kitimat pushed back and scored two goals as well, however the Rampage ended the first period in the lead 3-2. Hunt said the boys had a “sloppy” second period, and were unable to score.
At the end of the game Kitimat had seven goals while Prince Rupert had five.
Hunt said he is happy with how the Rampage played over the weekend, considering the team has only had two on-ice practices in Kitimat this season so far due to the lack of ice making machine at the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre.
The Rupert Rampage will be kicking off the first game of the season this weekend, playing against the Ice Demons in Kitimat on Oct. 6.
“We’ll have a chance to work on things… I think we’ll be prepared going into the game,” Hunt said, adding, “We’ll have a strong team.”