Capitals defencema Simon Chen battles with a Port Alberni player during a recent exhibition game. (Citizen file)

Capitals defencema Simon Chen battles with a Port Alberni player during a recent exhibition game. (Citizen file)

Cowichan Capitals ready for Game 1

Season opener Saturday at 7 p.m.

The puck drops on the Cowichan Valley Capitals’ 2017-18 B.C. Hockey League season this Saturday.

The Caps host the Nanaimo Clippers to open the regular season, having lost twice to the Clippers in preseason games by scores of 3-1 and 5-3.

The game begins at 7 p.m., but fans are encouraged to show up as soon as the doors open at 6 p.m. for celebrations including live music.

This will be the first regular-season game for new head coach Brian Passmore. Returning players from last year include forwards Haydn Hopkins, Ty Pochipinski, Nick Wilson and Alec Zawatsky, defencemen Simon Chen, Marshall Skapski and Nii Noi Tetteh, and goalie Adam Marcoux. New faces to watch include local products Cole Broadhurst and Caleb Franklin up front alongside David Laroche, Troy MacTavish and Azzaro Tinling, blueliners Yuri Davis-Martel and Boo Grist, and goalie Yann Dery.

Tickets for the home opener are $14 for adults, $11 for seniors and students, and $7 for children. Kids five and under get in free.