The LNB atoms had a great weekend, winning three of their four games and finishing second in their own six-team tournament.
Friday night, Jake Buxton’s hat trick paced the Jr. Cents to a 4-1 win over West Kelowna. Graycin Nicholls scored Merritt’s other goal.
On Saturday morning, the LNB team battled back from an early two-goal deficit to upset Chase 7-4. Goals came from Buxton, Indiana Joe and game MVP Jayden Story.
In semi-final action on Sunday morning, the Merritt side again fell behind 2-0 before rebounding to edge Seafair from Richmond 5-4. Buxton and Story once again took care of the scoring for Merritt while netminder Manjot Panghli earned MVP honours for his outstanding play.
After three amazing games, the LNB squad simply ran out of steam in the championship game Sunday afternoon, losing to a powerhouse team from Clearwater. Buxton had Merritt’s only two goals.
“Though it was a handful of players who scored our goals, what you don’t see on the scoresheet is the tremendous team effort it took to win those three games,” said LNB head coach Shane Jarvie. “It was the hard backchecking, puck passing, positive attitude and perseverence of every player that made the weekend so successful.
“What could be more exciting than to be in the finals of your own home tournament?” added Jarvie.
“All of the coaches and parents can’t adequately express how proud they are of their team’s effort.”
The Fountain Tire atoms traveled to Vernon on the weekend and tied the Jr. Vipers 4-4. Max Graham paced the Merritt attack with two goals while Chase Cooke and Matthew Newman tallied once each. Assists went to Breanna Ouellet (2), Cooke and Tryton Bose.
The Ramada Inn peewees got two goals apiece from Nicholas Anscomb and Spencer Vaughan in a 6-3 Merritt victory over the Salmon Arm Jr. Silverbacks on Saturday.
Other scorers for the Jr. Cents were Justin Tighe and Liam Kelly.
Colton Macauley went the distance in net to pick up the win.