The Delta Ice Hawks won’t be going quietly into Christmas, playing three home games over the next week including very rare back-to-back nights.
The Ice Hawks welcome the Ridge Meadows Flames on Tuesday, then 24 hours later the Abbotsford Pilots are at the Ladner Leisure Centre. Both games get underway at 7:30 p.m.
Delta will then welcome the Mission City Outlaws on Dec. 27 (7:30 p.m.) before heading to Minoru Arenas for the annual Pacific Junior Hockey League’s Winter Classic Showcase. The will see all 13 teams in action in Richmond over the four days (Dec. 29-to-Jan. 1).
The Hawks will open the schedule against the Surrey Knights at 10 a.m. on Dec. 29 then close out the showcase against the host Sockeyes at 7 p.m. on Jan. 1.
The Showcase double header will be an opportunity to close ground on their cross-river rival for top spot in the Tom Shaw Conference despite having the best winning percentage of any junior “B” hockey team in the province.
Delta heads into this week’s play with a 23-4-0-0 record, but trail Richmond (24-5-1-3) thanks to having five games in hand.
The quirk in their schedule saw the Hawks play their first road game in 24 days on Saturday — a 9-2 win over the Port Moody Panthers.
Sophomore standout Carson Merriman led the way with a goal and four assists. Rookie Payton Hu scored twice while Conner Merriman, Colin Jang, Kyle Robinson, Carson Hemenway and call-ups Beckett Cross and Brady Miller also scored. Both play for the Vancouver Thunderbirds U18 A1 team.
Among the players out of the Hawks line-up was forward Henry Smith, 18, who was playing for the Vancouver Giants as the Western Hockey League club deals with a number of injuries and players at the World Junior Hockey Championships.