Hoping to build on their playoff success from this past spring, the Cowichan Valley Capitals will kick off the 2019-20 B.C. Hockey League season on Friday, Sept. 6.
The league released the schedule for the upcoming season last week, with several highlights for the Caps.
The Caps will visit the Nanaimo Clippers in their first game of the campaign, but won’t have to wait long for their home opener as the Victoria Grizzlies will stop by the Cowichan Arena the following night at 6 p.m.
An early highlight of the season will take place when the Penticton Vees visit the Big Stick on Saturday, Sept. 21 for a rematch of the first-round playoff series in which the wildcard Caps upset the Interior Division champion Vees four games to two. The Caps will host the Wenatchee Wild, who knocked Cowichan out of the 2019 playoffs, on Saturday, Oct. 19. The defending BCHL champion Prince George Spruce Kings will visit on Nov. 15.
The regular season will conclude for the Caps on Saturday, Feb. 22 when they play host to the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.
Wednesday and Friday home games will start at 7 p.m., Saturday games at 6 p.m., and Sunday games at 2 p.m.
The Caps’ 58 games this season break down as follows: eight against each of their divisional rivals (Nanaimo, Victoria, Alberni Valley and the Powell River Kings) split evenly between home and road dates, and two each (one at home and one on the road) against each of the five Mainland and seven Interior teams, and two at the BCHL Showcase Festival in early October.
The BCHL Showcase has taken a different format this year, with Island and Mainland teams gathering in Chilliwack on Oct. 2 and 3, and Interior teams in Penticton on Oct. 4 and 5. The Caps will face the Langley Rivermen at Chilliwack’s Prospera Centre on Oct. 2, and the Surrey Eagles on Oct. 3.
Other notes on the Capitals schedule:
Cowichan will play six of their eight divisional games against Victoria and Alberni Valley before New Year’s, but six of their eight meetings with Nanaimo will take place after Jan. 1. Games against Powell River are split evenly.
The Caps’ longest home stand will be six straight games between Oct. 27 and Nov. 10. They will never play more than four consecutive road games, which will happen three times.