Cranbrook's Bantam Ice win division
The Cranbrook Bantam Tier 3 Ice got some late game heroics by their captain Brandon Ouilette and again in overtime as the Bantam Ice won the East Kootenay A Division Banner with a dramatic 7-6 overtime win over the Invermere Rockies Sunday afternoon at the Eddie Mountain Arena in Invermere.
The round-robin tournament featuring five teams from Cranbrook, Creston, Elk Valley, Whitefish and Invermere got off to a rough start for the Ice as the club dropped a 7-2 decision to Invermere Friday night to open the weekend. With almost no room for error the rest of the way, the Ice defeated Whitefish 5-2 Saturday morning, beat Creston 4-1 later that afternoon and then dumped Elk Valley 6-2 to set up the rematch in the championship final against Invermere.
The see-saw battle saw the Ice go up by a goal five times only to have the Rockies knot the score every time. In the third period Invermere took their first lead 6-5 on Nick Hoobanoff’s 3rd of the game and held off the Ice right up until the final minute, setting up the finale. With the goaltender pulled for an extra attacker a shallow dump-in allowed Ouilette to come off the boards with the puck. He shovelled the puck at the net that managed to beat the Rockies netminder to tie at 6 with 11.9 seconds left in the game. With all the momentum, two minutes into overtime Ouilette again was the hero after he took a pass from Wyatt Manning, walked out of the corner and deked the goaltender for the hat-trick goal and the championship winner.
The Ice got goals from Kortlen Tschetters, James Rota, Jacob Bromley, Chase Leroux and Ouilette, with the hat-trick, while Brady Reid got the win in goal.