Fresh off visits back home, some family time and extra helpings of holiday turkey, the Osoyoos Coyotes are back on the ice this evening, hosting the Summerland Steam in a pivotal Okanagan division contest.
The Yotes (20-8-1) trail the Steam by a single point. A win tonight would vault the Coyotes into first place — with the added luxury of a game in-hand.
“They look good,” said head coach Ken Law of his players. “You can tell they were off for nine days, but we had a couple of good practices just to get the legs moving.”
Most of the Coyotes were back in town for a Thursday practice. Some straggled in late, held up by the weather of last-minute commitments.
“Everybody’s back except for (Jackson) Barrett,” said Law. “He’s still driving back from Indianapolis. So, he’ll be a couple of days.”
This evening’s match — a 7:35 start — is the second time in two weeks the Coyotes have found themselves playing for first place.
On Dec. 15, the Yotes fell 2-1 to the very same Summerland squad, that game also at the Sun Bowl.
“Every one has been tight,” said Law of games so far this season between the Coyotes and Steam. “Hopefully we’ll come out on the positive side of it.”
A win tonight gives the Coyotes the chance to add a little breathing room later this weekend.
The Coyotes have a New Year’s Eve contest against the North Okanagan Knights Sunday; Summerland doesn’t play again until Jan. 4.