Oct 5, 2013 – After weeks of tryouts and practice, BWC’s Bantam A2 squad finally hit the ice in a meaningful game.
BWC faced South Delta Bantam A1 in PCAHA Tier 2 action on Saturday, resulting in a 2-2 draw. BWC led the game 2-1 late in the third period, but a South Delta powerplay goal with under six minutes remaining levelled the score.
“We have a lot of work to do,” said Coach Kevin Batchelor. “There will be lots of bumps in the road, but that comes with any season. I’ve been coaching the A2 team for five years, and one thing that’s a common occurrence is that the first years have a tough time early on dealing with the size and the strength of the bigger players. It usually takes a bit of time to adjust. It’s a work in progress, but I’m really excited about this year.”
The team has set a number of lofty goals for this season, but if past years are any indication, this group has every reason to be confident.
“We’re in flight two right now,” noted Batchelor. “Our first goal is to make flight one. After tiering our goal is to get ourselves as high as we can in the standings heading into the playoffs. We have the goal to win playoffs and make final four and the end result is to try to get a championship.”
In order to reach those goals, the team will rely heavily on its depth, particularly on the back end.
“Coming into tryouts we had a lot of depth through three lines and defence was a tough decision,” said Batchelor. “We had eight or nine quality defencemen that could have made this club. We went with seven, with one being able to swing up and play forward if the injuries that can happen at this level do occur.”
One area where Batchelor will be looking for his defense to improve is when making that first pass. Apart from timing, Batchelor feels that players being aware of the right places to be on the breakout can be a big difference maker.
“The positions they need to be in, both in the offensive and defensive zone, where they need to be without the puck to be successful, especially in our own end, and our first pass needs to be a bit better,” said Batchelor. “We’re not going to score too many goals if we’re not getting it out of our zone .”
Up next for the Bantam A2’s is Chilliwack A1, with the game being played out the in valley on Tuesday night at 7:30pm.