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Junior Canucks hoping Lumby, B.C. talent returns to team in the fall

One year after Dawson Creek just missed capturing the Hockeyville title, it's Lumby, B.C. that is now vying for votes, home of two Dawson Creek Junior Canucks forwards: Jayden Pederson and Wyatt Warnes.

One year after Dawson Creek just missed capturing the Hockeyville title, it's Lumby, B.C. that is now vying for votes, home of two Dawson Creek Junior Canucks forwards: Jayden Pederson and Wyatt Warnes.

Two players coach Gene Cooper is hoping to retain next year.

"We first made contact with Jayden last fall and (he) came up and started skating with us and really enjoyed it here in Dawson," head coach Gene Cooper said in an interview with the team's play-by-play man Matthew Nicholson provided to the Dawson Creek Mirror.

"He made contact with Wyatt and (he) also came up and they spent the season with us here. They're really quality guys and they're both good hockey players. We hope to see them again next year," Cooper said.

With their season now over, ending in a loss to Grande Prairie in the first round of the playoffs, Pederson and Warnes wait to see if their hometown will be named Canada's Kraft Hockeyville for 2016.

The announcement will be made live on Hockey Night in Canada, April 2.

"B.C. is a great hockey province from top to bottom," Cooper added. "There is lots of small towns that have good hockey players and Kraft Hockeyville kind of brings it back to the roots."

Last year, Dawson Creek's Memorial Arena made the top ten of the contest before losing out to North Sannich, who went on to be the Western finalist, and eventually were crowned Kraft Hockeyville.

But, cracking the top ten meant that the arena did get some money, $25,000. A drop in the bucket for the $9 million of work proposed at the arena.

After closing for the hockey season last year, the rink reopened in the fall after a $2.4 million replacement of the facilities aging ammonia chiller with new Freon plants.

Council paid for the project by putting off several non-urgent capital expenses and will decide later whether to complete additional upgrades identified in the $9 million work plan they received last spring.

The Memorial is a rink that's well known across the province, Cooper said, and the upgrades will go a long way towards keeping it in the community.

With files from Matt Nicholson, Peace FM

dcreporter@dcdn.ca