Dane Rupert and the Kelowna Chiefs will take on Sicamnous in the third round of the KIHJL playoffs

Chiefs battle Sicamous in KIJHL semifinal

In a meeting of two playoff underdogs, Kelowna and Sicamous fight for berth in the junior B league's championship series

Apparently regular season records mean next to nothing in the Kootenay International Junior Hockey’s Okanagan-Sushwap Conference.

The Kelowna Chiefs and Sicamous Eagles—a pair of fourth place teams—will meet in the KIJHL’s semifinal series beginning Saturday night at Rutland Arena.

Face-off is 7 p.m.

Game 2 will be played Sunday in Kelowna, with Games 3 and 4  in the best-of-seven series next Tuesday and Wednesday in Sicamous.

The Chiefs took down first-place Osoyoos and second-place Princeton in the first two rounds to win the Okanagan Division title, while Sicamous upset first-place Revelstoke, then second-place Kamloops in seven games to capture the Doug Birks Division title.

The Eagles posted a pedestrian 22-28-1-1 during the regular season.

The Chiefs and Sicamous played just twice during the regular campaign, with each team winning once.

In the two combatants, Chiefs’ coach Ken Andrusiak sees more than a few similarities.

“(Sicamous) is a lot like us,” said Andrusiak. “They’ve improved steadily and it’s really showing in the playoffs. Like us they have good offense, and they work hard. They’re a young team like us, too.”

If necessary, Game 5 would be played Friday, March 23 in Kelowna, with Game 6 in Sicamous on March 24, and a seventh game on Sunday, March 25 at Rutland Arena.

The series winner will advance to the KIJHL final against the Kootenay Conference winner.


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