Steam prepare for hockey playoffs

The Summerland Steam Junior B hockey team have a guaranteed spot in the division playoffs next month.

The Summerland Steam Junior B hockey team have a guaranteed spot in the division playoffs next month.

With eight games remaining, the Steam have a record of 28 wins, 14 losses and two overtime losses.

This puts them in the second place spot in the Okanagan/Shuswap Conference: Okanagan Division of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League.

The last regular season game for the Steam will be on Sunday, Feb. 21.

At present, the Osoyoos Coyotes are in first place, while the Kelowna Chiefs are in third and the North Okanagan Knights are in fourth.

The standings this year are similar to the team’s performance a year ago, when Summerland finished the year second to Osoyoos. “It’s been another solid year by the boys,” said John DePourcq, coach of the Summerland Steam.

He said the team has played well, despite some recent losses.

“The difference between winning and losing is such a fine line,” he said.

In the weeks to come, DePourcq said he will be focussing on keeping the players healthy and ready for playoff action.

Last year, the Steam defeated the Kelowna Chiefs and then faced the Osoyoos Coyotes in the division finals. Osoyoos won that series in six games.

DePourcq said the junior hockey league is exciting and the games have provided fans with good hockey.

He would like to see more fans in the stands for the remaining home games, in order to give the players an extra boost of encouragement.