Not a huge surprise today as Beau Bennett won the BCHL Interior Conference Rookie of the Year Award. Smokies forward Sam Mellor had a fantastic season and earned his nomination for the award. However, Bennett won the league scoring crown with 120 points. It's pretty hard for any other rookie to compete with that!
I am intrigued that the official award winner list has Bennett listed in a tie with Salmon Arm forward Mark Zengerle for the league's top scorer. While they both finished with 120 points, traditionally the player with the most goals is given the edge. Older hockey fans will remember that's what happened when Marcel Dionne beat Wayne Gretzky for the Art Ross Trophy back in 1979-80. Both players had terrific seasons so I don't really have an issue with them calling it a tie. I just wonder if that's the usual protocol.
I actually found the amount of ties in the awards this year quite annoying. What is this t-ball? We don't have to make everyone happy! Voters were too wishy washy this time around. Honestly though, what a regular season it was. We saw some incredible point totals including 3 guys with over 100 points and a 60 goal scorer. Every nominee and winner deserves the recognition they got... even if Todd Miller CLEARLY paid someone off to get the broadcaster of the year award. I'm on to you, Todd! We all know how Vernon likes to grease the wheel. That's what the internet tells me anyway... Congrats to Todd who is super talented and a class act. Plus somebody had to take that award from Hammer this year because we all saw how big his ego got last time!
Of note for the upcoming Westside/Trail playoff series, Warriors defenceman Brendan Ellis was named the top defenceman in the Interior. What is it with the Warriors and top d-men? That's three straight years the winner of that award has played for Westside. He'll be a key guy for the Warriors against Trail starting on Friday night on Mountain FM.
Don't forget Trail's home games next Monday and Tuesday will start at 7pm rather than the usual 7:30. That should make it a little more family friendly. As for awards, tonight is the Smoke Eaters Awards Banquet at the Riverbell. It'll be interesting and hopefully as usual a good time... even if we're starting during the Canada/Russia game!
Again click here for the official list of award winners.
Just a couple of notes from the KIJHL playoffs. Beaver Valley had a 4-2 lead after the second but fell 6-4 last night to Nelson. The Leafs now lead that first round series 3 games to 1. Castlegar lost 4-3 in Spokane last night and the Braves have now drawn even. Game 5 is tomorrow in Castlegar and Nelson.
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