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Bantams Take the Title in Salmon
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The Sun Valley team takes a swipe at goal.
   
Saturday, January 15, 2022
 

STORY BY BOB B. OAR

 PHOTOS BY BRAD GOLUB, MIKE MCKENNA and TIFFANY ORR

 The outdoor rink on the bluff above Salmon, Idaho, has been home to many memorable games for Sun Valley Youth Hockey over the years. The recent 10-team Bantam (ages 13-14) tournament was no different.

The Suns sent two teams up to the snow-covered river town. The more experienced SV1 team was able to bring home the championship that had eluded the group a few years before. Meanwhile, the scrappy SV2 team ended the weekend with an impressive victory in some frigid temps.

 
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The Sun Valley Bantams defended the goal well.
 

                                                                                                   

SV1

The last time most of the SV1 players laced `em up together in Salmon they were just Squirts (9-10 year olds) and they made it to the championship game only to come up short. This time the hard-charging group was not to be denied.

While fans stood on snow piles overlooking the ice, which was protected from the afternoon sun by homemade shades, the SV1 squad rolled through the competition. They coasted to easy wins over Butte, Coeur d’Alene and Helena.  After a tight first period, the Suns then cruised to victory over Missoula in the championship game, 6-1.

 
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Sun Valley player waits for the onslaught.
 

Alex Golub got all 4 wins in goal, including his first two shutouts. He made 44 saves during the tournament.

Sutter Ellison led the team in scoring with 9 goals—including 4 in the championship game—and 3 assists for 12 points. Benjamin Fenn scored 8 times and tallied 11 points. Their linemate, Seth London, scored twice and had 10 points.

Owen Tempest had 2 goals and 5 points, while fellow defensemen Kaz Hogan, 3 goals, and Jack McKenna each had 4 points. Blake Nissan, 2 goals, and Wyatt Miller and Riley Ortega, 1 goal each, all had 3 points. Will Swink had 2 assists and Owen Gingrich, Jacob Korzen and Simon Morgan all scored goals for SV1.

Jackson Turner played forward and Drake Orr served as a back-up goalie as the team happily hoisted the Salmon River of No Return Classic trophy.

 
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The Bantams celebrate victory.
 

 SV2

The SV2 team consisted of primarily younger and less-experienced players who seemed to get stronger every shift. After close losses to Missoula and Bozeman, the Suns battled back to tie Butte. Cooper Salvoni scored with just seconds to go to tie it, as Suns’ fans huddled around the fire pits rejoiced.

With temps topping out in the single digits the next morning, the SV2 squad knocked off their rivals from Idaho Falls.

“It was really cool to watch those kid improve and come together and win that game,” head coach Baba Street said.

 
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The Sun Valley Bantams brought home the Salmon River of No Return Classic trophy.
 

Street was joined on the bench all weekend by fellow coaches Jamie Ellison, Troy Ortego and Frank Salvoni.

Drake Orr had a win and tie in net for SV2 and made 81 saves during the four games. Justus Rosser and Jacob Korzen each had 2 goals and an assist. Jacob Choma had 2 goals, Cooper Salvoni had a goal and an assist. Grason Martin scored and Connor Prew had an assist.

The teams head to Utah (SV1) and Boise (SV2) next.

 

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