The buzzer sounded at the SOEC in Penticton last night, and for the first time in 14 years neither the Vernon Vipers or Penticton Vees will be represented in the Interior Division Final.
The Trail Smoke Eaters topped the Vees in Game 7 on the road 4-2 to clinch their first trip to the third round in franchise history, and they will meet the newly moved Wenatchee Wild for the Interior Division Championship and a berth in the BCHL finals. Wenatchee topped the Vernon Vipers 4-2 in the series after coming back from an 0-2 deficit. This will also mean a fourth team (other than the Vees, Vipers, or Warriors) will win the Interior Division title in that 14 year time frame.
The Mainland Division Championship went to seven games as the Spruce Kings dispatched the Surrey Eagles at home in Prince George and it sets up a collision course with Island Division Champions, the Powell River Kings, who won in 5 games over the Victoria Grizzlies. This matchup represents what is the 3rd longest possible series in the BCHL with 890 kilometres between the two rinks (and two ferries!)
The clash of Kings begins on Friday, while the Smoke Eaters and Wild series schedule has not yet been announced.