The Junior A Penticton Vees skate into the British Columbia Hockey League’s 50th anniversary season with its blades and instincts sharpened, poised to capitalize on a quick start that has the team in reach of first place in the Interior Conference standings. In his fifth year with the team, head coach and general manager Fred Harbinson makes sure his players keep their sticks low and their self-confidence high as they navigate the icy roads of their regular-season schedule. Forward and 2011 NHL draft pick Mario Lucia leads the way for the Vees, splitting defenses with Zamboni-polished slickness and subjecting opponents to more body checks than an anxious physician. Mario and fellow NHL draftees Steven Fogarty and Mike Reilly are not the first Vees to earn interest from the big league, as NHL All-Stars Brett Hull and Duncan Keith both donned the club’s dashing V-neck sweaters in their early days.
Located on Ellis Street, Sunplex Sports Arena is a privately owned indoor sporting venue that hosts a wide array of roof-topped sports. Sun-shy sportsmen can drop in on any number of ball-centric back-and-forths, including roller hockey, ball hockey, or futsal. FIFA-approved futsal is an incarnation of indoor soccer that pits two five-person teams against one another on a wall-less playing surface, making for more strategy and less of the treacherous geometry of traditional indoor soccer. Meanwhile, roller hockey and ball hockey allow athletes to improve their hand-eye coordination while successfully avoiding rouge zambonis. Each of Sunplex's inspired athletic bouts take place on polyethylene flooring, known for its improved traction and gentle, knee-forgiving surface.
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• For $20, you get a seat in sections J or K (a $40 value, including ticket fee and HST). • For $22, you get a seat in sections L, M, N, E, F, or G (a $45 value, including ticket fee and HST). • For $40, you get a ticket to the VIP section, row four (an $80 value, including ticket fee and HST). • For $50, you get a ticket to the VIP section, row three (a $100 value, including ticket fee and HST). • For $75, you get a ticket to the VIP section, row two (a $150 value, including ticket fee and HST).