News and Announcements
The Saanich Express wish to announce their team award winners from the 2018 PNWJLL season. Each and every player (rostered and affiliated player) bonded as a team throughout the season and finished in 2nd place in regular season play. This was a tremendous first season for the Express under new ownership and with only a handful of returning players.
The awards ceremony took place on Saturday, September 15th at the Tsawout First Nations – Gym and Multi-Purpose Room. All in attendance enjoyed a tremendous array of potluck dishes and a wonderful Baron of Beef dinner supplied by our wonderful sponsor, the Local (located at 1205 Wharf Street in downtown Victoria.
This seasons winners are as follows:
Most Valuable Player: Zack Dhillon & Nolan Tytgat
Top Scorer: John Etzel Jr.
Rookie of the Year: Brayden Flynn
Most Improved: Andre Snow
Most Sportsmanlike Player: Carter Wood & Bryan Toth
Unsung Hero: Matt Caseley
Top Defender: Jonny Harmsworth
Outstanding Dedication: Jorden Tytgat
Coaches Award (Offence): Riley Condon
Coaches Award (Defence): Noah Ackinclose
Leadership Award: Dan Barrodale
Volunteer of the Year: Doug Walker
The Express would also like to thank the number of volunteers (Gary Johansen (Pictures), Marilyn Johansen, Keri Ward, Klaire & Aubree, Jacquie Churchill, Gloria Tytgat, Christy Tytgat, Deanna Rivers, Bobbi Walker, and Doug Walker). We would also like to thank our “Game Day” staff; John Charlesworth (Announcer), Newman (Announcer – Playoffs), Kevin Bendall (Scorekeeper), Jimmy Hansen (Timekeeper), and the shot clock contigent of young officials.
A big thank you to our fabulous coaching staff (Colin Bell, Darcy Tytgat, Tyson Leies, Charlie Rivers and Bob Harmsworth for bringing our team a long way in such a short period of time.
Lastly, a “HUGE” shout out to our numerous program, game day and jersey sponsors! This team was able to achieve a number of goals this season because of the wonderful support it received from you. Thank you!
Pictures of the banquet can be found by going to the drop down menu in our navigation bar under “Team”.
The Saanich Express came up just shy again in their first playoff series with the Westshore Bears.
The Express lost their 2nd game of the 2 out of 3 series which now pits the two series winners; Cowichan Thunder vs. the Westshore Bears. The PNWJLL final series schedule can be found on the league website (http://wcjll.teamopolis.com/league/division_info.aspx?SeasonID=13399&DivisionID=23156&DisplayType=0) once details are uploaded by the league.
The Saanich Express would like to wish the Westshore Bears and Cowichan Thunder the best of luck in the PNWJLL Finals as well as at Provincials being held at the Q Centre Arena from August 2nd – 5th.
Further team notices will be posted within the next few days as information becomes available.
The first round of the PNWJLL Playoffs has been set. The first place Cowichan Thunder will face fourth place Campbell River Ravens; and the second place Saanich Express will face the third place Westshore Bears in the other playoff round. The Thunder and Ravens will play Saturday and Sunday in their 2 out of 3 series, while the Express and Bears open up tomorrow on the Westshore. The dates of this series have been set and are as follows:
Game #1: Saanich Express @ Westshore Bears
Date: Thursday July 12th, 2018
Location: The Q Centre Arena
Game #2: Westshore Bears @ Saanich Express
Date: Monday July 16th, 2018
Location: SaveOn Foods Arena
Game #3: Westshore Bears @ Saanich Express (*If Necessary)
Date: Wednesday July 18th, 2018
Location: SaveOn Foods Arena
The Express’ move to the SaveOn Foods Arena is due to arena unavailability in Esquimalt as well as Panorama as the Canadian National Ball Hockey Championships have those facilities. The Express are thrilled to be in the SOFA for their first round of the playoffs and are asking fans of lacrosse to spread the playoff excitement as they embark on the start of their 2nd season within a season.
Admission will not change from regular season prices.
Children (12 & Under): FREE
*Arena entry will only be through Gate #3 entrance.
To the Saanich Express faithful and those hopping on the Express train passenger car… Come out to the SOFA. Put your feet up and relax, but just until the opening whistle as your Express depart on their 2018 PNWJLL Playoff run. All Aboard!!!
With the PNWJLL league statistics updated, the Saanich Express have found themselves taking the next step on the run of the league ladder, with a confirmation they have finished in 2nd place in the 2018 season.
Currently tied with the Bears from the Westshore, the missing game is a default/forfeit by the Nanaimo Timbermen on Sunday June 17th which gives the Express a two point lead over the Westshore Bears. Regardless of the Bears outcome tonight vs. the Cowichan Thunder, your Saanich Express will finish in 2nd place and will have home floor advantage over the Westshore Bears.
The rounds will be as follows: First Round (2 out of 3), Final Round (3 out of 5)
The Thunder will face the Ravens next weekend (July 14th – @ Cowichan & July 15th @ Campbell River) and game #3 if necessary on July 21st
The Express will face the Bears next Thursday (July 12th @ 8pm at the Q Centre Arena), games #2 and #3 (if needed will be Express home games once an arena can be found) as Pearkes Arena in Saanich now has both floor surfaces covered in ice and the Archie Browning Arena is hosting the Canadian National Ball Hockey Championships.
Once an arena can be found, the schedule will be updated. Congratulations to the Saanich Express! Now… All Aboard the Express Train!!!
To say there is not love lost between these two franchises would be an understatement. The rivalry between Westshore and Saanich has been a tremendous one throughout the past 15 years. Although the Cowichan Thunder sits atop of the standings; it was this game tonight that was drawing such overwhelming attention as playoff implications weren’t much of a factor as we know that the Thunder will face the Ravens and the Bears will face the Express, but seedings between Westshore and Saanich are still up in the air. The winner tonight could very well be the 2nd place finisher.
The Bears would start Senft in net while the visiting Express countered with Nolan Tytgat. Both goalies were tested in the first minute with each one standing up to the test but at 18:11 of the period, Peninsula Warriors product Mason Lo buries a low shot between the legs of Senft assisted by Riley Condon and Bryan Toth. At 17:57 Express’ John Etzel takes a major penalty for cross-checking and James Thompson of the Bears takes exception and gains himself an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, then a 10 minute misconduct and then finally a game misconduct but the home team gets the power play as Tytgat gets a slashing penalty from the crease and the Bears capitalize with two power play goals. Saanich then returns the favour with Mason Lo scoring his 2nd of the night assisted by fellow Peninsula product and midget teammate Jace Francis and tie the game. The Express take the lead on a shorthanded goal by Brayden Flynn, assisted by Lo and John Etzel but the home team would come back with another of their own. The Bears would take the lead 4-3 at 9:57 of the period but the Express didn’t stop at the station and scored 4 more unanswered goals by Jace Francis, John Etzel (x2), and Nic Hoekstra with assists going to Walker (x2), Condon (x2), Snow and Lo to finish the period with the Express leading 7-4 after 20 minutes of play.
With the Bears shorthanded to start the 2nd period, Saanich took full advantage on the power play with Etzel blazing one past the new Bears ’keeper (Damien Spaven) assisted by Brayden Flynn. The next 6 minutes has some good end to end action with a few penalties to boot but some good lacrosse. Then the Bears would score at 13:45 to make the score 8-5 and it appeared as though momentum was in the home teams favour but then the wheels fell off the bus for the Bears and Jace Francis would find the top right corner of the Westshore net assisted by Robbie Walker and Riley Condon. Then Zack Dhillon would score two goals 3 minutes apart; one on a breakaway and the other one shorthanded as he split the defense and drove to the net and beautifully buries a behind-the-back goal to make the score 11-5 for the visiting Express, the lone Express assist on one of the Dhillon goals was by goaltender Nolan Tytgat.
The third period was a quiet one with only a handful of penalties and only 2 goals, one each by the Bears and Express. The Express’ goal by Zack Dhillon who was wearing the “C” tonight in place of absent Captain Dan Barrodale who was away at work. Your Saanich Express have been firing on all cylinders and on a good “team” roll the past 2 weeks and as mentioned earlier, with this 12-6 win has taken over 2nd place in the PNWJLL standings.
The freight train has now earned a well deserved rest over this long weekend before they are back in the rink for practice to prepare for their first round playoff match-up with the Westshore Bears. Playoff dates and games per round are still undetermined at this time but the Express will announce this to their fans once it has been determined.
Okay fans of lacrosse and those still sitting on the tracks in disbelief that the Express are for real; let’s get on the Express Train and cheer on your home team when playoffs are announced. The road to Provincials had begun and the Express need everyone’s support! All Aboard!!!