Pictured here at the 2017 NAHC in the Cowichan Valley, Ty Brant claimed his second gold medal in three appearances at the tournament when Team BC won the 2018 championship. (Citizen file)

Pictured here at the 2017 NAHC in the Cowichan Valley, Ty Brant claimed his second gold medal in three appearances at the tournament when Team BC won the 2018 championship. (Citizen file)

Valley boys win NAHC gold

Local products help Team BC to boys title, girls team finishes fourth

Two hockey players with local ties were part of Team B.C.’s championship win in the male division at the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships in Nova Scotia earlier this month.

Duncan’s Ty Brant won his second title in three appearances with Team B.C. at the NAHC. The defenceman was also on the gold-medal winning team in 2016, and helped B.C. to bronze in 2017 when the event was held in the Cowichan Valley. Brant spent the 2017-18 season with the Delta Hockey Academy

Making his first appearance at the NAHC was Ladysmith’s Hunter Livingston, also a defenceman, who played in the Cowichan Valley Minor Hockey Association until heading to the Notre Dame hockey academy in Saskatchewan for the last two years.

B.C. defeated Team Saskatchewan 6-5 in overtime to win the gold-medal game, the third time in the NAHC’s 17-year history that B.C. has won the national title.

The head coach for Team B.C. was Dwayne Roloson, a former NHL goalie who served as an assistant coach with two of Shawnigan Lake School’s teams in 2016-17.

“After a pool-play loss to Saskatchewan earlier in the week, we went into the final game with a renewed focus and each period saw our boys more determined to not give up,” Roloson said. “These young players were full of heart, hard work and talent and I feel proud to have been a part of this program.”

B.C. finished second in their pool after round-robin play, then beat the defending champions from Manitoba in the semifinals.

Maryna Macdonald, a Shawnigan Lake School Grade 12 player, captained B.C.’s female team to fourth place in their tournament and was named the Most Valuable Defensive Player. The Harvard-bound Macdonald was joined on Team B.C. by Shawnigan teammate Georgia McLellan.