By David F. Rooney

The Revelstoke Grizzlies beat Saskatchewan’s Tri Town Thunder 5-3 Sunday afternoon making them the best Junior B Hockey team in Canada. This is a feat that has never before been accomplished by a Revelstoke hockey team. Our coaches and fantastic players deserve a hero’s welcome.

The team will be home this evening — likely between 8:30 and 9 pm — and Revelstoke’s local hockey fans really should come out in force to greet them at the Forum.

The Grizzlies went to Kamloops on Thursday where they calmed the Storm 6-2, followed by a 4-2 blitz on the Tri-Town Thunder, the top Junior B team from Saskatchewan.

On Friday they lost 3-1 to Manitoba’s Selkirk Fishermen and on Saturday they roared back to demolish Alberta’s Beaumonth Chiefs 7-2 and the North Ontario Hawks by a score of 4-2. They played the Tri-Town Thunder in the gold medal match Sunday afternoon.

Revelstoke’s Luke Richardson opened the scoring at 9:34 in the first period with assists from Caleb Roy and Kyle Ceretzke. He scored the second goal at 15:14 in the second period with help again from Roy and Bruce Silvera. Faiz Khan scored the Grizzlies third goal at 13:26 in the third period on a power play with help from Richardson and Brad Friedrich. Then Richardson scored a third time, this one at 7:40 on a power play with — again — help from Caleb Roy. The Grizzlies final goal came from Ben Bula on an assist from Trevor Esau with just 46 seconds remaining in the game. Tri Town scored once in the second period and twice in the third. That was all she wrote — but it was enough for the hockey history books. You can read the full box scores for the gold medal game here. The win gives the Grizzlies gold, Saskatchewan’s Tri Town Thunder silver and the Kamloops Storm bronze.

Don’t let the scores fool you. These were not easy wins against weak teams. The other provincial champions in the Keystone Cup series are powerful teams with players as old as 21. So these scores tell me the Grizzlies are an immensely talented, skilled and focused team. Based on their track record they are without a doubt the best hockey team that has ever represented our community. They have earned their way into our local History of Hockey Museum.

Fry said Coach Mick will call her before the team leaves Kamloops. She’ll then call me and I’ll immediately post the time they’ll be arriving at the Forum. If you’d like to join me and other fans to give our boys a welcome they’ll never forget please bring a sign!

Go, Grizzlies, go!