Mike Nesbitt predicted a change for the better last year when he took over as head coach of the Comox Valley Glacier Kings. He promptly rebuilt the junior B hockey club, and the team started to win games.
In the early stages of the 2021/22 season, the Yetis are second behind the Campbell River Storm in the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL) North Division with a 9-5 record.
“Team’s great, good bunch of kids too,” Nesbitt said. “The boys are a pleasure to be around. They make every bus trip fun.”
Sunday in Victoria, the Kings won 5-2 over the Westshore Wolves, who sit second behind the Victoria Cougars in the South Division. On Saturday, the Yetis beat the Nanaimo Bucs 7-2 at home. On Friday, they lost 5-1 on the road to the Lake Cowichan Kraken.
“Tough one on Friday night, but the boys bounced back pretty good,” Nesbitt said.
So far this season, the Glacier Kings are the only team to have beaten Campbell River — a 3-2 overtime win at home Sept. 25.
“It was very emotional for the boys at home.”
Team captain Caileb Berge, a forward from Sylvan Lake, Alta., has scored 23 points in 14 games this season. Only five players in the league have more points.
“He keeps going the way he is, he’ll catch them.”
Matt Teasdale of Royston has also put up some impressive numbers, scoring eight times and registering nine assists in 13 games.
The Glacier Kings net is tended by a trio of rookies, with Ryder Lally shouldering most of the duties. The Black Creek native has backed the team to seven wins — third best in the VIJHL.
“We have a lot of good local rookies,” Nesbitt said. “We also have our experienced veterans that I brought in last year. You’ve got to have a good mix of both.”
The next game is Friday, Oct. 22 at Oceanside against the Generals, who are five points behind the Yetis in the North Division. Then on Saturday night, the Kings host Lake Cowichan. Puck drop is 7:30 p.m. at the Comox Valley Sports Centre.
“Hopefully fill that building real soon,” Nesbitt said. “It’s (fan numbers) coming up. Come out and support the local hockey club. It’s an exciting team.”
The Glacier Kings are back on the road Sunday in Campbell River.