The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League’s top team during the regular season lived up to all expectations in the playoffs.
The Beaver Valley Nitehawks, who lost just 11 times—regular season and playoffs combined— beat the Kelowna Chiefs 4-2 Sunday night at Rutland Arena to sweep the best-of-seven championship series in straight games.
Braeden Hikichi scored the game’s first goal just over two minutes into the second period to give the Chiefs their first and only lead of the night.
Craig Martin scored twice for the Nithehawks, who seized the lead for good with a power play goal 5:19 into the second period.
Matt Hill pulled Kelowna to within one with an unassisted marker at 11:53 of the third period to make it 3-2.
But Dallas Calvin, who had 27 points in the post-season, sealed the deal with an empty net goal with 23 seconds remaining.
The Chiefs overcame the odds in the 2011-12 KIJHL playoffs after finishing in fourth spot in the Okanagan Division with a 26-22-0-4 record.
Kelowna knocked off defending-champion Osoyoos in six games in the opening round, bumped off Princeton to win the Okanagan Division, then took down Sicamous in the five games in the Okanagan.Shuswap Conference championship to advance to the final.
The Chiefs, under the guidance of Ken Andrusiak and Grant Sheridan, moved to Kelowna from Chase for the start of the 2010-11 season.