The Mission City Outlaws have been awarded hosting rights for the 2015 Cyclone Taylor Cup, which figures to be a huge boon to the local junior B hockey club.
The Cyclone Taylor Cup is the provincial junior B hockey championship, bringing together the winners of the Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL), the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL), and the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL), in addition to the host team. The tourney champ moves on to the Keystone Cup, the Western Canadian championship.
“It’ll likely be the highest level of hockey that this city’s ever seen,” enthused Outlaws head coach Brad Veitch.
“It’s a big thing for our program, for sure. It not only allows us to get out there in the junior hockey world, it also allows us to go into our community and give them an event to look forward to and hopefully take a little bit of ownership in – with corporate sponsorship, or just being a fan.”
Veitch believes the organizing committee will benefit from Mission’s recent experience hosting major events, including the 2014 BC Winter Games, which involved nearly 2,000 volunteers.
He also believes the Cyclone Taylor Cup will benefit the Outlaws on the ice – both in terms of motivating returnees, and recruiting new talent.
“Playing in the Cyclone Taylor Cup is a carrot for anybody we want to bring in,” he said.
The Outlaws’ 2013-14 season recently came to an end in the first round of the PJHL playoffs. Facing the Harold Brittain Conference-leading Aldergrove Kodiaks, Mission was swept in four straight games.
Veitch acknowledged that the Kodiaks are a tough team, but noted his squad was hamstrung by two-game suspensions to top-line forwards David McGowan and Cameron Bertsch. Both were banned after being whistled for head contact on hits.