When it comes to eye protection in hockey, most amateur players will put safety first and wear a visor. But there are instances where wearing a visor can prevent opportunity.
Thanks in part to Air North/Cinderwood Jet Mike Beauchamp’s visorless headgear, his team received a four-minute power play to start the finals of the fourth annual Dawson City Senior Hockey Tournament last weekend. With an extra two minutes because of blood drawn from near Beauchamp’s eye on a high stick, the Jets scored three power play goals en route to an 11-4 win over the Whitehorse Pilsners
“Mike Beauchamp got a high stick right in the face – it clipped him probably a centimetre from his eye,” said Jets forward Ryan Gleason. “He never (wore a visor) in that tournament, but he wants to start wearing one now.”
The Jets stayed on top for the rest of the game, with three goals from Gleason, two from Burt Stevens, two from Beauchamp, two from Will McKenna and singles from Drew O’Connor and Ben Cole. Scoring a hat trick for the Pilsners was Chris Evans.
The champion team advanced to the finals with a 7-5 win over Dawson City Blazing Aces Sunday morning. After missing Saturday’s games due to illness, Gleason started the day with five goals.
“I missed that whole day Saturday because I was really sick, but I was fortunate enough to get my strength back to play Sunday,” said Gleason. “I got some sort of virus that I still have today.”
Although Gleason put in the bulk of the goals in the semifinal, teammate Ryan Kinney got a pair of important ones, tying the game at 4-4 and later scoring the game-winner.
“He comes through in the end,” said Gleason of Kinney. “He’s a good player.”
The Pilsners earned their ticket to the finals with a 9-2 win over Whitehorse’s Narrow Gauge. Leading the Pilsners in scoring was Andrew Sprokkreeff with three goals.
The Air North/Cinderwood Jets was a composite team at the tournament, made up from players on Whitehorse Rec League A Division teams, the Air North/Cinderwood Jets and ORC Tree Services. Currently the Jets sit at the top of their division in the league.
“I thought it was well organized and the community and the organizers of the tournament put on a good show,” said Kinney. “They made everyone feel welcomed and made sure everyone enjoyed themselves.”
Tournament organizers would like to thank the Downtown and Eldorado hotels, Dawson mayor Peter Jenkins, employees from the Drunken Goat, plus sponsors Klondike Visitors Association and Diamond Tooth Gertie’s.
“We can have about eight in a tournament, but six is the usual right now,” said tournament organizer Dave Ezzard. “I think we’ll have eight next year because everyone had such a good time and said it was one of the best-run tournaments they’ve ever been to.”
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