This year’s last Nor Cal Cup event before finals is hosted at Stockton’s own, Stockton Indoor Sports Arena. It’s great to have a venue to play hockey since there aren’t very many rinks in the area. It’s definitely one of the newer rinks around. The employees that run the facility are very welcoming and accommodating.
We kicked off the tournament this morning with the big boys, bantams. The rink’s home team, Stockton Thunder, were matched up against the River Rats of Antioch, the Rats went on to win that game with a score of 6 – 3. The game to watch was the Bantam Final between The River Rats against NCR Elite Brown. Elite, initially down by one goal in the first, cruised by in the second with a 5 to 2 victory. Elites own, Donny Carter wins top sniper for bantams as well.
PeeWees started in the afternoon with four very competitive teams: Bauer Riot, Delta River Rats, NCR Elite, and Stockton Jr. Thunder. The top two of these teams played for the final and those were the River Rats and NCR Elite. Sound familiar? Similar to the Bantam final, however it did not end the same. Elite’s Nathan Boone scores first to take the lead and stays up by one till 8 minutes into the second. Delta recovers with a goal to tie it up with 12 minutes left on the clock, but the game winner came from a nice dangle to a backhand from Delta’s Dylan Robello with only a minute left, leaving the Rats victorious.
Day 1 was filled with nothing but success and concluded with a very exciting championship. I had the chance to meet new people in the Northern California hockey network; doing whatever I could to learn more about it’s community. We are looking forward to another exciting day tomorrow with the little guys, atoms and mites, here at Nor Cal Cup in Stockton.
Nor Cal Cup day 2 in Stockton belonged to the little guys, Atoms and Mites. Atoms were the first to play and unlike yesterday, today we have gold and silver finals. It’s always exciting to watch the little guys, especially in the finals. The amount of raffles we did today was substantially higher. Some cool prizes were handed out, including a pair of Hyper reversible pants, which was awarded to Paul Nelson of NCR Elite.
Although the day went on to be hotter than yesterday, the Nor Cal Cup crews were hard at work. Itan using his creative expertise to puzzle together some sensational videos. Also, Blake was putting time in with the camera snapping photos of everything from games and refs to candid shots of the energy within the facility.
Just as each mite team had their first game in the bag, we had our first final of the day, and it was for the Atoms Gold division. Delta River Rats and Silicon Valley Quakes made their way to the Gold Final round, and oh boy was it a close one! During the second half of that game, as one team scored the other would come right back. Delta’s Drake Daley makes an incredible save that deflects the puck just enough to land on the top netting of the goal which helps them to victory over the Quakes by a score of 7 – 5.
After the Atoms finals, the Mites continued their last four games and they went by quick. Before you knew it Revision Mustangs were set to square off against the Stockton Jr Thunder. Revision’s team might be one of the best Mite teams in the area. The Jr Thunder put up a great fight but they were no match against the Mustangs, thanks to the help of their goalie, Jake Fuss who also earned Top Goalie honors.
Stockton turned out to be an extraordinary event. Everyone was happy and had a great time, which what I care about most. I hope to come back next year to this great facility and see the same kids playing hockey. See you at Nor Cal Cup Finals in San Jose in two weeks!