Canucks Alumni, Stamps face off for kidsMarch 30 2010 at 8:49 AM
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By Greg Sabatino - Williams Lake Tribune
Published: March 30, 2010 8:00 AM
More than 700 fans flocked to the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex to watch the Vancouver Canucks Alumni take on the Williams Lake Stampeders in a fundraising game for the Cariboo Chilcotin Child Development Centre.
Many former Canuck greats including Dave Babych and Orland Kurtenbach, along with former fan favourite Chris Oddleifson behind the bench and Canucks public announcer John Ashbridge, visited the lakecity to help raise funds for the CCCDC’s new building fund.
The game itself didn’t disappoint, as the Canucks Alumni defeated the Williams Lake Stampeders Saturday night in an action-packed 10-4 final.
After jumping out to a 6-0 lead with goals from Doug Rose, Greg Neeld, Babych, Mark Lofthouse (2), Jason Hufty and Jeff Oddleifson, Stampeders’ forward Gilbert Robbins found the twine to put the Williams Lake squad on the board.
Later in the second period, Robin Gilbert scored his first of the night to make it 6-2, before adding his second to kick off the third period.
The Canucks, undaunted by the surging Stampeders, piled four more goals on the Stamps from Hufty (2), Oddleifson, and Neeld.
Scoring the final goal for the Stamps was Robbins, with his second of the night.
CCCDC early intervention manager Vanessa Riplinger says the entire evening was a huge success, with everyone on and off the ice enjoying the game.
“It was awesome,” Riplinger said.
“We were really pleased with the support the community showed, and the Canucks, too, were really pleased with the support.”
So impressed, in fact, that the Vancouver Canucks Alumni made an impromptu presentation during the first intermission, donating an additional $1,000 to the CCCDC.
“They asked about our charity, and they loved the way the game was set up,” Riplinger said.
“They told me what a great community Williams Lake is, and they also said what a great team the Stampeders were.
“They just said it was awesome.”
Prior to the game, the CDC’s preschool children sang the national anthem to a chorus of applause from the packed house at the CMRC.
“They hadn’t seen anything like it at one of these games,” she said. “The Canucks were wonderful with the kids and the fans — they had a blast — they really enjoyed Williams Lake and would like to come back.”
The game was the CCCDC’s kickoff event for its new building fund, as the organization has outgrown its currently locations and is looking to put all its programs back under one roof.
“It was the perfect event to start the ball rolling for the CDC,” she said.
“I really would like to thank our sponsors and the community who came out in droves, and of course the Stampeders. We’re very fortunate.”
See a future issue of the Tribune for fundraising totals from the event, which were not available by press time.