The Beaver Valley Nitehawks dropped the puck on its Kootenay International Junior Hockey League exhibition season as it visited the Nelson Civic Centre to take on the Leafs Tuesday.
Both squads iced a heavy contingent of rookie players and when the final whistle sounded, the Nitehawks edged the Leafs 5-4.
The Hawks play the Castlegar Rebels on Friday at the Beaver Valley Arena with puck drop at 7 p.m., before a return trip to Castlegar on Saturday. The Hawks then host the Selkirk College Saints on Sunday at 6 p.m. before heading to Creston on Tuesday for their final exhibition game.
Opening season is just over a week away for the Hawks as they look to defend their KIJHL title.
The team opens the season against Grand Forks Border Bruins Sept. 14. The score of the Hawks – Leafs game Wednesday night was unavailable at press time.