Kootenay Ice goaltender Declan Hobbs stones Blades forward Wyatt Sloboshan on a breakaway opportunity Sunday night. Sloboshan and the Blades went on to a 5-4 overtime victory.

Kootenay Ice goaltender Declan Hobbs stones Blades forward Wyatt Sloboshan on a breakaway opportunity Sunday night. Sloboshan and the Blades went on to a 5-4 overtime victory.

War torn

Kootenay Ice drop contests against Moose Jaw Warriors and Saskatoon Blades this past weekend

The Kootenay Ice missed out on an opportunity to collect four valuable points in the race for the WHL post-season this past weekend, dropping outings against the Moose Jaw Warriors and Saskatoon Blades.

There wasn’t much to cheer about Friday night at Western Financial Place as the Moose Jaw Warriors defeated the Kootenay Ice 5-1.

Perhaps the brightest spot of the evening came when the Kootenay Ice and fans were given a brief glimpse into the potential franchise future between the pipes as 16-year-old Declan Hobbs made his WHL debut in relief of Wyatt Hoflin with 15:17 to play in the third period.

“It was pretty nerve-racking getting out there in the last minutes, so I was pretty cold,” Hobbs said Friday night. “Once I got in there I found where I wanted to be, sort of relaxed a bit and got a little bit more confident with every save I made. It was good.”

Hobbs, a native of Saskatoon, was perfect in turning aside all 10 shots he faced Friday night after Hoflin was victimized four times on 20 shots.

A third-round selection (53rd overall) of the Kootenay Ice at the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft, Hobbs was recalled from the Saskatoon Contacts of the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League Thursday morning.

Despite suggesting he was nervous, Hobbs looked anything but in his brief stint between the pipes, making a handful of saves, including a number of stops with his team playing shorthanded late in the game.

“He looked good,” said Kootenay Ice forward Austin Vetterl of Hobbs’ debut. “We took a lot of penalties so he got a lot of shots on net. We didn’t give him much help, but he did a good job back there. It’s obviously nice for him to get a little taste like that and perform well.”

Thursday afternoon, Kootenay Ice general manager Jeff Chynoweth said he believes Hobbs has the potential to be the franchise’s future in net.

“I’m trying to find a steady balance in my game and have as much confidence as I can to stay in it every game and give my team the best chance to win,” Hobbs said. “If I can carry that over here [to Cranbrook from Saskatoon], I think that’ll be good.”

Hobbs wasn’t given the chance to keep his team in it Friday as he started the game on the bench, though he certainly did admirable work in keeping things from getting further out of hand.

The Warriors built a 4-0 lead before Hoflin was yanked and Hobbs entered the game in the third period.

Vetterl cut into the Warriors lead with a short-handed goal of his own and Point rounded out the scoring with an empty-net marker.

With Hobbs’ hometown Saskatoon Blades visiting Cranbrook Sunday night, the rookie puck-stopper didn’t get much help in his first-career WHL start.

Turnovers helped the Blades jump out to a 3-0 lead, with Wyatt Sloboshan, Josh Uhrich and Amil Krupic all cashing in.

“We weren’t ready to play,” Vetterl said Sunday. “They outworked us at the start of the game. They got on our ‘D,’ we made mistakes and they put it in the back of our net. That put us behind the eight ball.”

The Ice looked disinterested at times, but veteran forward Tim Bozon refused to let his team be shutout by the visitors.

The native of Valbonne, France, got his team on the board late in the first, before adding a power-play tally midway through the second period to make it 4-2.

Rookie Vince Loschiavo scored his fifth of the season to help the Ice claw within one before the second intermission.

“It’s obviously nice to contribute a little bit,” Loschiavo said Sunday. “But we’ve also got to start putting these wins together before the playoffs.”

As he’s done so many times before, Bozon took the game into his own hands late in the third period, snapping a shot past the glove of Blades goaltender Brock Hamm to tie things 4-4 with 54 seconds remaining in regulation.

Bozon was unavailable following the game, as he was left without a voice, having played Sunday night through illness.

Blades forward Sam McKechnie ended any hopes of an Ice victory when he deposited a two-on-one feed past Hobbs 24 seconds into overtime.

Despite the overtime loss, the Ice did manage to grab one point, building a two-point cushion on the Edmonton Oil Kings for the first wild-card position in the WHL’s Eastern Conference.

“We came out, showed some heart in the second and third [periods],” Vetterl said Sunday. “I would say we outworked them in the second and third [periods] and scored some goals, showed some heart at the end, especially scoring with a minute left.

“Getting a point out of this is important, but obviously, in the end, we would have liked two points.”

The Kootenay Ice return to action Tuesday night when they travel to Lethbridge to face the Hurricanes.

Video highlights: Moose Jaw Warriors 5 at Kootenay Ice 1 (Friday, Feb. 13):

Video highlights: Saskatoon Blades 5 at Kootenay Ice 4 (OT) (Sunday, Feb. 15):

Just Posted

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interior Health COVID-19 cases falling slower than the rest of B.C.

More than a third of provincial cases announced Thursday came from the Interior

Students at Creston Valley Secondary School put together an art installation of a replica residential school room. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston students create art installation of residential school room

The replica was decorated with a small bed, school uniform, and notes written with pleas for help

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Second dose vaccinations accelerating throughout region: Interior Health

To date, more than 675,000 doses have been administered throughout the region

1914
It happened this week in 1914

June 13 - 19: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers… Continue reading

Cranbrook Arts has opened the doors of their  new gallery space to the public with their inaugural exhibit, Kootenay’s Best.
‘Kootenay’s Best’ opens Cranbrook Arts’ new gallery

This exhibit has been in the works for the past several months and features the work of more than 50 emerging and established artists from across the Kootenays

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Most Read