The Red Cup Showcase, a premiere boys’ high school hockey tournament, has been hosted by the Riverview Redmen in Cape Breton for 42 years, dating back to February 1977.
The Avon View Avalanche attended the tournament this month, playing three games in their division.
They came out on the losing end all three times, losing by scores of 3-2 in overtime to the Redmen, 6-3 against Lockview, from the Metro High School Hockey League, and 4-2 against the Memorial Marauders from North Sydney.
Their overtime game with the Redmen was by far the most exciting.
Avalanche goaltender Joe MacDonald stopped three breakaways in the opening period as the clubs played to a scoreless draw after one. In the second period, Matt Benedict and Dan Lord both scored and the Avalanche were up 2-0 after 40 minutes.
The third period was considerably different, despite the fact the Avalanche appeared to have the tying goal but Riverview nullified with 21 seconds showing on the clock.
Play continued for a few brief seconds before the on-ice official ruled the puck had crossed the goal line and the game was tied at 2-2.
Both teams had a number of quality scoring chances in the overtime before Riverview scored the game winner.
The Avalanche will now get back to business as they wrap up their 2018-19 Valley High School Boys’ Hockey League regular season.
Heading into weekend play, they had a record of 11-3-0 and occupied second place in the Eastern Conference.
They were slated to visit Kingston on Feb. 15 for a 7:30 p.m. start against the West Kings Wolverines, a team the Avalanche defeated 7-4 in Windsor on Feb. 2.
On Feb. 16, they are to return home for their final home game of the season when they entertained the 6-5-2 Clare Loups from Digby County.
After a dismal season last year, the Loups have bounced back in 2018-19 and are presently only four points out of first place in the Western Conference as they trail the Par-en-Bas Sharks.
The Avalanche were also planning to have a ceremony to honour the 10 graduating players from Avon View’s line up at the start of the match.
The Avalanche boys will finish their league games on the road, travelling to Bridgewater on Feb. 22 to take on the 13-0-0 Parkview Panthers, and then to Kentville Feb. 23 to take on the Horton Griffins.