Creston Chiefs start season with loss, tie

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The Creston Valley Minor Hockey Midget rep Chiefs had their first two games on the weekend.

The Chiefs have head coach Tony Mulder. A big Creston welcome to our community for assistant coach Kyle Stoner with his wife Abbey. Another assistant coach is Brett Van Ruyskensvelde. Goalie coach is Dave Wigen, manager Lawrence Makortoff and trainer/HCSP is Rick Philbrook.

The team has two goalies, nine forwards and six defencemen. Back from last year are captain Jessie Bourgeois, assistant Josh Samuels, Will Caspers, Nat Philbrook, Nick Mottl and netminder Curtis Luke.

In the Chiefs league are Cranbrook, Windermere Valley, Elk Valley and Whitefish.

The game on Saturday was a barn-burner. The Creston Chiefs started the scoring in the first period with goals by quick- handed Nick Mottl, assisted by Keiran Simpson and Caspers. Then came another quick Chiefs’ goal, a howitzer from the blue line by Zack Van Ruyskensvelde, assisted by Jayden Gigliotti and Mottl.

Cranbrook, with players like Taylor Pinch (Danny Spring’s grandson) answered back with two goals of their own. After sitting at 2-2 for what seemed forever, the proverbial hockey “bad bounce” came into play on a Cranbrook shoot-in, sneaking by the Chiefs netminder who lost sight of the puck. The Chiefs coach pulled second year goalie Curtis Luke, in the last minute and a half of the game. With many chances in the Cranbrook end, the Chiefs could not get one by, ending the game 3-2 for Cranbrook.

Rookie netminder Christopher Mulder did not let any pucks by for his first time in the net as a midget. Coach Tony Mulder was very happy with the players’ effort, especially from the third line, the players there played their positions well. The Chiefs are looking forward to playing Cranbrook again.

On Sunday the Chiefs travelled to Castlegar to face the only midget rep team the East has to offer. Castlegar had a strong team in the 2011/2012 season. Missing from the Chiefs for this game, were captain Bourgeois, with the flu, and veteran defencemen Philbrook, with a knee injury from the Cranbrook game.

Creston started the game with only three defensemen. Castlegar started off the scoring late in the first. The Chiefs got into some penalty trouble with the two referee and two linesmen system, landing themselves in the sinbin. Nifty Chiefs’ passes from Simpson and Abdul Samai got the puck to Samuels,  who went top shelf on a nice short-handed goal.

Castlegar took advantage of another power play with a goal and took the lead again.The Chiefs answeredwith a goal from Mottl, assisted by Samuels and Michael Makortoff.

Castlegar notched another man advantage goal, then the Chiefs evened up the game at three with a goal from defenceman Caspers, assisted by Mottl. Netminder Curtis Luke played an awesome game.

Coach Tony Mulder was pleased with the tie, stating that this was Castlegar’s home ice and they wanted the win badly– they were not expecting the Chiefs to have such a solid team.

Next Chiefs’ home game is this Saturday, October 20th in the Johnny Bucyck Arena at 10:15 a.m. against Coeur D’Alene. Come on out and be a fan. There is no charge to attend. You will only need to use the edge of your seat and bring a noisemaker.  On Sunday the 21st the team travels to Windermere Valley for a 1:45 p.m. game. Keep your stick on the ice!