A look back at the highs and lows of 2019 Trail Times sports

The Times revisits the accomplishments and accolades of Trail athletes in its Sports Year in Review

It was an exciting year in Trail Times sports as athletes from a variety of disciplines rose to regional, national, and international prominence.

Over the next four days, Times Sports will feature a selection of the year’s top stories beginning at the beginning, January to March.


4 – The Beaver Valley Nitehawks honoured Fruitvale native Sam Swanson and retired the former captain’s No. 29 jersey in a ceremony prior to the Nitehawks-Castlegar Rebels game.

8 – Black Jack skier and National Ski Team member Julien Locke finishes first at the U.S. National Sprint Championship.

9 – Greater Trail Tier 2 Midget Smoke Eaters capture gold at the GTMHA annual Midget Rep tournament with a 7-2 victory over Salmon Arm.

15 – The Trail Smoke Eaters add WHL goaltender Donovan Buskey to the mix at the BCHL Jan. 10 trade deadline.

17 – Trail native and former Smoke Eaters captain Jake Lucchini was nominated for the Hobey Baker Award. The Michigan Tech Huskies captain earned the consideration for top NCAA Div. 1 player in the nation after leading the Huskies in scoring the last two seasons.

– Rossland’s Sage Stefani races to gold and silver medals in the U18 Girls Western Series Races and shared the River Cup (and a bag of BC apples) with Red Deer friend, Rory Stadler, whom she tied for most points.

23 – Rossland native Ross Armour earned the WCHA Rookie of the Week considerations for his play with the Bemidji State Beavers. The former Smoke Eater and Nitehawk forward assisted on four of seven Bemidji’s goals in two weekend wins.

24 – Super League curler and skip Bill van Yzerloo of Castlegar, along with third Brian Lemoel and second Richard Faunt of Trail, and lead Alex Coutts of Castlegar, went undefeated in the Kootenay playdowns to earn a berth to the Senior men’s curling provincials in Trail in February.

25 – Fruitvale native and former B.V. Nitehawk Arie Postmus is making big strides off the ice with the Red Deer Rebels.

30 – Doug Smith of Vernon teamed up with Brian LeMoel of Trail, Garry Beaudry of Nelson and Bill King of Beaver Valley and defeated the Ken Fines rink in the final to win the Kootenay Masters Zone Playdown.

– The Western Hockey League announces that the Kootenay Ice will be relocated in Winnipeg.

31 – Long time B.V. Nitehawks trainer Tom Meakes retires after 23 years.


6 – Baseball Canada announces that Trail native Jason Bay will be inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.

7 – Trail Smoke Eaters defenceman Kyle Chernenkoff”s playing career cut short by concussions, but takes on assistant coaching duties for Trail.

8 – Greater Trail products and former WHL Kootenay Ice players Steve Makway and Pat Iannone weigh in on Ice move to Winnipeg.

12 – Pride Gym’s BJJ fighters Jared Kovar, Gilbert Champagne, Brandon Krumm and Noah Champagne acquitted themselves well at the Spokane Submission Series tournament on Feb. 2. Jared won bronze in GI, Gilbert earned silver in GI, and Noah captured gold in No-GI and silver in GI.

15 – The Trail Curling Club is ready to host the Men’s and Women’s BC Senior Curling Championship.

20 – B.V. Nitehawks wrap up their home season on winning note – set stage for successful playoff run.

25 – The Marilou Richter rink from Penticton-Kelowna and the Wes Craig rink win the BC Women’s and Men’s Senior Curling Championship hosted by the Trail Curling Club.

26 – Smoke Eaters end season on winning note in a 5-4 overtime victory over West Kelowna Warriors to finish season in seventh place in Interior Division with 23-24-8-3 record.

28 – Trail Smoke Eaters forward Kent Johnson up for BCHL Rookie of the Year Award.


5 – Beaver Valley Nitehawks complete sweep of Grand Forks Border Bruins in first round of KIJHL playoffs.

6 – Black Jack skiers Remi and Jasmine Drolet win multiple gold medals at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer. The Rossland siblings won five gold with 18-year-old Remi winning the 10-km interval start and the 15-km classic mass start, while Jasmine, 14, captured gold in the 10-km mass start classic. The pair then captured gold in the Team Relay.

12 – The Trail Smoke Eaters eliminated the Merritt Centennials in five games to move on to the semifinal of the Interior Division playoffs.

13 – Trail product Jake Lucchini signed a one-year entry level contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins AHL affiliate Wilkes Barre-Scranton Penguins.

– Former Nitehawks captain Lyle Frank donates kidney through Kidney Paired Donation Program, helps his mom find a match.

14 – Trail bowlers Erika Kivi and Taylor Servatius capture silver at the BC Youth 5-Pin Bowling Championship in Surrey.

19 – The Beaver Valley Nitehawks win the Neil Murdoch Division final in a Game 6, 4-1 victory over the Nelson Leafs. Play Kimberley in Kootenay Conference final.

– Beaver Valley Skating Club’s Brenna Paulsen and Brian Chan are BC/Yukon Super Series StarSkate Champions. Brenna won first place in the Star 10 Women and Brian took home the champion’s trophy for Star 5 boys at the provincial event in Kelowna.

20 – Pride Gym fighter Charles Bisset loses World Muay Thai title bout to Diaguely Camara.

– The West Kootenay Pee Wee Wildcats host the 2019 Female Pee Wee provincial hockey championships.

27 – Kimberley Dynamiters defeat the Beaver Valley Nitehawks in the third overtime period for a 3-2 victory and a 4-1 series win in the Kootenay Conference final.

29 – The Trail Smoke Eaters suffer a Game 7, 5-2 loss to the Vernon Vipers to end their BCHL Interior Division playoff run.

31 – Greater Trail players Scott Davidson and Craig Martin end their NCAA Div. 1 hockey careers with the Quinnipiac Bobcats after an inspired playoff run. The Bobcats fall a game short of making the Frozen Four in a 3-1 loss to defending champion Minnesota-Duluth.

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