Lucas Vanroboys plays one of his last games for the Cowichan Valley Capitals against the Prince George Spruce Kings on Jan. 5. (Citizen file)

BCHL final begins this Friday in Prince George

Vernon Vipers take on Spruce Kings

The Cowichan Valley Capitals may be out, but the B.C. Hockey League playoffs have continued, with the final series set to start this Friday.

For the first time in league history, the Fred Page Cup final will be contested by the Vernon Vipers and Prince George Spruce Kings.

The Vipers earned their berth in the BCHL final by beating the Wenatchee Wild four games to one in the Interior Division final. The defending league champion Wild were responsible for eliminating the Caps in six games in the second round, after the Caps upset the Penticton Vees in the first round, also in six games.

The Spruce Kings have rolled through the playoffs with 12 wins and a single loss, sweeping the Victoria Grizzlies in the third round showdown between the Mainland and Island Division winners.

The Spruce Kings include Lucas Vanroboys, who the Caps dealt to P.G. at the trade deadline in January. The 19-year-old agitator had 15 points and 87 penalty minutes in 27 games with the Caps prior to the trade and eight points and 23 penalty minutes in 15 regular-season games with the Spruce Kings afterwards. In 13 playoff games, he has collected three goals and five assists for eight points along with 16 penalty minutes.

The series will start this Friday when the Vipers travel to Prince George.

Head to head this season, Prince George earned a 2-1 home win over Vernon on Dec. 5 and went to Vernon Jan. 19 and posted a 4-1 victory.

The BCHL champion advances to the best-of-seven Doyle Cup against the AJHL winner. That series is slated to begin in Alberta on April 26.

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