The Grizzlies return as BC CHAMPIONS!

The team poses in front of their bus with the Cyclone Taylor Cup, which is held aloft by Goalie Andrew Parent. Well done, boys! David F. Rooney photo
By Steve Smith

On Monday night, the Revelstoke Grizzlies returned triumphantly to their home city at 8:30 pm, pulling into the Forum parking lot to an anticipatory crowd of just under 100 faithful fans. Auxiliary RCMP members Eric Scarcella and Paul Carter escorted them safely into town with lights flashing on their RCMP SUV.

Dennis Beraducci did a great job throwing together the impromptu party which included commendations from Mayor David Raven, “Thanks for putting Revelstoke on the map!” The Revelstoke Current and EZ Rock were both present and had happily spread the news to Revelstoke all day. The crowd cheered the team on wholeheartedly as they pulled in and it was easy to see who amongst them have been faithful volunteers and dedicated fans all year.

The Cyclone Taylor Cup was awarded to the Grizzlies on Sunday, April 4, with their Gold Medal 4-1 win over the Peninsula Panthers that evening. This honor has never been bestowed upon Revelstoke before and this team of Grizzlies are the first to do it, according to local hockey historian Beraducci.

“This is a historic feat,” he stated proudly. “An incredible night for this town.”

As of yesterday, the Grizzlies are now the best Junior B hockey team in the entire province of BC; and their tired faces coming off the bus showed how hard they’ve worked to get where they are now. Tournament MVP, Faiz Khan, was proud of the team’s work and has been one of many stellar players in the Grizzlies’ system all year.

“This was an experience of a lifetime,” he said after disembarking from the team’s bus. “We had no idea what we were up against, but we did what it took to win.”

A highlight of the night was when the normally reserved Andrew Parent brought out the trophy and paraded it around the parking lot. The team gathered for photos outside and in, warmly accepting the crowd’s’ thanks.

Coach Mick was elated with the turnout.

“This was an unbelievable experience for the boys,” he said.” Something they may or may not do ever again. I’ve told them to enjoy this to the fullest. We have one more trophy we want to bring home to Revelstoke and two weeks to get ready for it; but unfortunately, we’re going to have to leave town now to practice and incur more costs for the team.”

Cindy Cota of Valley Blacktop was one of the almost 100 people who came out to greet the Grizzlies Monday evening. In her case, she wanted to welcome them home with something tangible — a cheque for $1,250 that she presented to the Grizzlies' Mike Roberts to help the team pay its way to the Keystone Cup Western Canadian Junior B Championships in Kamloops next week. David F. Rooney photo

As always, the Grizzlies can use help with fund-raising or spreading the word about the club’s successes. Grizzlies’ Business Manager, Mike Roberts also accepted a donation of $1,250 from Valley Black Top this evening as VBT wanted to pay for one night away in Kamloops for the Grizzlies. The road trips are costly, but last Tuesday, the Grizzlies held a fundraiser and the community helped to bring in over $6,000 to offset costs.

One difficult part of the tremendous success that the Grizzlies have garnered is there is no more generative revenue, so thanks must go out to all businesses that have taken it upon themselves to show how much they care for this team. Sure-Haul paid for all the Grizzlies’ fuel, Work n’ Play donated $400, Spice O’ Life Emporium donated percentages of their sales and personal cash, Speers Construction donated $550, EZ Rock raised over $1,700 in two hours, The Current donated $4,800 in advertising to the first business to cough up $4,000 or more. The list goes on and on with tales of Revelstoke generosity. Do we need to do this? No one is twisting anyone’s arm. We give, we donate, we volunteer, because we are Revelstokians, and we’re proud of seeing accomplishment that comes through hard work and discipline. The Grizzlies will be doing a formal press release in the days ahead as they catch up on all those piles of paper thanking the public.

Next up is the Keystone Cup from April 15-18. Follow the Grizzlies on as they’ll have podcasts. Maybe the Last Drop or the Regent should show them on their big screens, eh? Get everyone out cheering and smiling and feeling good. That’s Revelstoke!

Here are some additional photos from the team’s welcome home:

Steve Smith and Dennis berarducci were among the first people to welcome the tired-looking but triumphant Grizzlies home to the Forum on Sunday evening. David F. Rooney photo
A crowd of about 100 people alerted by EZ Rock and The Current to the fact that there would be an impromptu Welcome Home Party waited for over an hour for the team to arrive. David F. Rooney photo
And here's what they struggled to win: the Cyclone Taylor Cup, which is carried by Goalie Andrew Parent. The Grizzlies were the KIJHL Champions once before. That was in 1998. But they have never been provincial champions. Now do they have what it takes to be the Western Canadian champs? We say, "Yes!" David F. Rooney photo


Revelsoke Printing and Little Caesars Pizza of the Week hidden word: Brochures