Langley – University hockey is back in B.C., as Trinity Western University’s men’s hockey team will host the three-team Captains Cup, featuring the University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University and the Spartans, starting November 12th. This year’s Captains Cup is a double round robin tournament that will conclude with the top two teams playing in the Cup Final on Dec. 2. All seven games will be played at the George Preston Recreation Centre in Langley and will be streamed FREE online (www.YouTube.com/SpartansSID).
Less than two weeks after the cancellation of the Canada West regular season, the announcement of the three-team competition will provide an exciting competition for both players and fans alike. While fans are not permitted in the arena, fans can follow along every step of the way with games being available both live and on demand.
The tournament provides an opportunity to showcase university hockey in Canada, with this being the fourth iteration of the Captains Cup. In each of the previous three editions, UBC took home the title, winning in a round robin series with TWU and SFU in 2017 and 2018 before earning the Cup in 2019 by winning a one-game showdown against the Spartans.
“We are really excited to elevate the Captains Cup to be a special event for university hockey in B.C.” said TWU coach Barret Kropf. “With the cancellation of the Canada West season, we of course had lots of disappointment but we have never once rolled over to admit the season is a right off. These student athletes have become so incredibly adaptable in the face of COVID-19 that we owe them this opportunity to compete. With every safety measure taken into account from B.C. health officials, we will be able to showcase the talent that is at the university level here in Canada and give our student athletes the opportunity to play meaningful games as they try to capture the tradition of the Captains Cup.”
2020 Captains Cup – Schedule
Nov. 12 (Thurs.) – UBC vs. SFU – 12 p.m. (PT)
Nov. 13 (Fri.) – SFU vs. TWU – 1 p.m. (PT)
Nov. 19 (Thurs.) – TWU vs. UBC – 12 p.m. (PT)
Nov. 20 (Fri.) – UBC vs. TWU – 1 p.m. (PT)
Nov. 26 (Thurs.) – SFU vs. UBC – 12 p.m. (PT)
Nov. 27 (Fri.) – TWU vs. SFU – 1 p.m. (PT)
Dec. 2 (Fri.) – Captains Cup Final – 1 p.m. (PT)
This year’s tournament will feature a series of six afternoon contests, with each team playing the other teams twice each, with the top two sides playing for the title in a championship contest.
“We are really excited to get the competitive juices flowing once again,” said UBC coach Sven Butenschon. “The Captains Cup has meant a lot to us before COVID and will mean that much more this year with Canada West pushing pause on league play.”
This fall marks the first year the Spartans men’s hockey team is part of Canada West and U SPORTS, having joined Canada’s top level of university hockey after spending the previous 14 seasons playing in the BCIHL (British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League). The Spartans capped their tenure in the BCIHL by winning the league championship in both 2017-18 and 2018-19, before taking the regular season title in a 2019-20 season that saw the cancellation of the league playoffs due to COVID-19.
Meanwhile, UBC is coming off an historic season in which the Thunderbirds earned a spot in the Canada West Final for the first since 1978 and, in doing so, qualified for the University Cup for the first time since 1977. After beating the University of Alberta in a thrilling best-of-three semifinal series that went the distance, the Thunderbirds lost to the University of Saskatchewan in a best-of-three Canada West Final series. The conference final ultimately marked UBC’s final action of the 2019-20 season as the University Cup was cancelled before UBC was able to play its quarter-final contest.
Traditional BCIHL power SFU finished second behind the Spartans in the league standings in 2019-20. A BCIHL announcement in June stated the league would not start any sooner than January 15, 2021.