Pod ‘Keen’ For Winter Classic

Whalers lace up against Pilots January 1; Outlaws January 2.

WHITE ROCK – The weather outside is frightful, but the Whalers received a last-minute present from the provincial health office: this season’s Pacific Junior Winter Classic will go ahead.

The Winter Classic is a regular season tournament held in Minoru Arena after Christmas. During a four-day span, Dec. 30 to Jan. 2, each team will play two games.

Head coach Jason Rogers explains a drill to the Pod.

Jan. 1: Whalers vs Pilots, 1:00 p.m.

First, the Whalers will lace up against the Abbotsford Pilots on New Year’s Day at 1 p.m.

“We’re excited for the last part of the season leading into the playoffs,” said Whalers captain Tyler Price. “We’re keen on being at our best like we’ve been for the past while.”

Price referred to the recent winning streak of seven victories in a row that propelled the Pod – 18 wins, 11 losses, a single overtime loss for 37 points – into third place in the Tom Shaw Conference.

Meanwhile, the Pilots have little hope of making the playoffs. Abbotsford has only 14 points and one win in the past five games.

The Whalers skate during a mini-training camp Dec. 28 in Centennial Arena.

Alternate captain Matt Burry (yellow sweater) prepares to receive a pass.

Jan. 2: Whalers vs Outlaws, 7:00 p.m.

The next day, White Rock will take on the Mission City Outlaws to conclude the Winter Classic. The Whalers have played the Outlaws only once this year: a 4-3 Mission win on Oct. 23.

According to the City of Richmond, the capacity limit for Minoru will be a crowd of 400. We hope that plenty of Whalers fans will drive safely and brave the sub-zero temperatures to cheer on the Pod!

Coach Rogers watches closely as his players perform a dump-and-chase play.