High school players from the Sun Valley Youth Hockey are aiming for a trophy this weekend at the Idaho Amateur Hockey Association (IAHA) state tournament on two rinks at Boise’s Idaho Ice World.
Competing with six other teams in the “A Division,” coach Chad O’Brien’s Sun Valley skaters have a tough opening game today at 7:45 a.m. against defending IAHA high school champion Boise Braves.
Last March at Hailey’s Campion Ice House, the goaltending of Seth Askew and scoring of Ed Osterberger led Boise Braves to their first IAHA state tournament title since 2014 with a dominating 5-1 title game victory over Eagle/Rocky Mountain.
Osterberger ended his five-game state stint with 13 goals and 5 assists for 18 points. It was the third state high school title for Boise Braves, who won their first in 2007.
SVYH made the state semi-final game last year in Hailey where O’Brien’s squad fell 6-2 to Boise Braves. The Suns won twice at state in 2019, beating Bonnecrest of Idaho Falls 6-0 and also taking care of the Mountain View/Centennial Mavericks by a 7-4 count.
The SVYH high school hockey program still holds the most IAHA state championships, seven in all from 2002-05, 2008, 2011 and 2015. This weekend’s IAHA high school tourney is being contested for the 19th time.
In 2020, there are seven teams in the “A Division” and six teams in the “B Flight.” Over three days there are 27 games planned, ending Sunday with the “B Flight” title game at 8:30 a.m. and the “A Division” championship contest at 10:15 a.m.
Sun Valley has four preliminary games starting this morning against Boise Braves. Also today, at 1:15 p.m., the Suns meet the Mountain View/Centennial Mavericks.
On Saturday, Sun Valley faces off at 9:15 a.m. against Idaho Falls Tigers and plays at 5:45 p.m. in its final preliminary, against Moscow. Rounding out the “A” field are Timberline and Eagle/Rocky Mountain.
Having placed second in the “A Division” for two straight years, Eagle/Rocky Mountain will be seeking its fourth state high school championship in the last six years.
In the “B Flight” are Salmon, Teton Valley, Bonnecrest, Canyon County, Skyline of Idaho Falls and the Boise Knights. Last year, the Palouse Moscow Bears beat Salmon Rapids for the “B” title.