Miners set for play-in game as Logan Lake hosts BCIHL Championship tournament

Crowning BCIHL champion

The Logan Lake Miners will play host to the 2024 British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League Championship, getting underway Thursday at the Logan Lake Recreation Centre.

This year the tournament returns to a single-weekend format, rather than its traditional best-of-three playoff format.

The mini-tournament gives the top two seeded teams an additional opportunity to compete for the championship, instead of facing elimination after their first loss of the tournament.

Five teams play in the BCIHL — the Logan Lake Miners, Simon Fraser University Red Leafs, Okanagan Lakers, Victoria Vikes and Vancouver Island University Mariners.

The host and number five seed Miners will face the fourth place Red Leafs in a play-in game to determine the final four team bracket. That matchup gets underway at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday.

For the quarterfinals, winner of that game will play the third seeded Okanagan Lakers at 3 p.m. on Friday, while the top two seeds — the Vancouver Island University Mariners (34 points) and University of Victoria Vikes (29 points) — face off Friday at 7 p.m.

Whichever team comes out on top in the battle of the best game earns a bye to the final, while the loser plays the winner of the other quarterfinal game in the semi-final matchup Saturday at 2 p.m. with a chance to earn a rematch.

The championship game will be held Sunday at 1 p.m.

This format was previously used in 2021 when SFU defeated VIU for their fourth championship in program history.

BCIHL president Chris Munshaw told Castanet Kamloops the league had historically held its championship in a tournament format and decided to go back to it for a number of reasons.

"We like the opportunity to have all the teams in one location [and] host the elite banquet to give out our year end awards," he said.

Happy to be in Logan Lake

He added the Logan Lake bid on the 2024 tournament was appealing for multiple reasons — one being there is plenty of ice time availability, which has been a challenge for the BCIHL. Munshaw also said hosting the tournament will be good experience for the Logan Lake staff and enable the BCIHL to pursue its interest in expanding to the Okanagan.

"Having an events out in that direction gives us some opportunity to do some networking and communication with universities and colleges in the area," Munshaw said.

The 2024 BCIHL Championship will be held at the Logan Lake Recreation Centre located at 31 Chartrand Ave. in Logan Lake. Tickets start at $10 and are available now online.

This season was the second for the Miners in the BCIHL. Thompson Rivers University had a club team competing in the league between 2009 and 2014.

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