An Octo...errr April Saturday in So Cal

by Daryn Goodwin

by Alex Morrison

Out here in beautiful Southern Cal, we have this phenomenon known as Santa Ana winds.  Hot dry air from the desert blows back toward the ocean, in the opposite direction of normal air flow.  As my meteorology professor said 25 years ago, "The wind will always blow from a high to a low."  This high pressure usually forms after the summer, and makes our fire season what it is out here. Well, that weather pattern has made its' way to us this spring weekend, and for a lot of out of towners, it was quite a surprise!  It has been dry, hot and windy all day, and doesn't look to let up any time soon.  Other than the heat, the rinks are doing get, and conditions are about as good as you would want in an area just a few miles from the beach.

The rinks here in Irvine are running a bit late this afternoon, mainly because we have had some very competitive games that have taken a long time to finish.  We have even had overtime today.  That just took place in the Mite Gold final between Militia Red and High Rollers.  Militia held a one goal lead late in the game, and with less than a minute to go, the High Rollers stole the puck.  I had looked back to see when the goalie was going to come off for an extra attacker, but it never happened.  Coach Joey Madrid must have known something, because a few seconds later, the Rollers skated the puck toward the net and scored to tie the game with 20 seconds remaining.  In overtime, a similar thing happened, as the High Rollers ended the game with a nice backhand shot.  Back on Rink 1, we had a Pee Wee Quarterfinal go to a 7 round shootout.  Holy cow!

Today has been a crazy one, not just because of the playoff games, but because we have been seeding every division playing, including an 18 and 20 team division.  For over 6 hours today, we had 6 games taking place simultaneously at 2 different facilities.  It has been organized chaos!  Kids that play on multiple teams in different divisions, it was a bit of a challenge, but they were able to get through it.

The Junior final just ended, and it had the makings of a sleeper.... that is, until the 2nd half.  Pama took an early lead on Konixx, and kept their foot on the gas pedal, bringing their lead up to 4-0 before the Outcasts had enough of it, and started one heck of a comeback.  With just over 6 minutes to go in the game, Konixx finally tallied their first goal, then another with 3, and another with 2, bringing the score to 4-3.  They had great pressure in the last minute, but the Prospects were able to hold off the rush, and win a gold medal.  The interesting thing about this one is that Pama lost to the Outcasts, and lost to Verbero in the round robin, only to come back and beat both of them in the playoffs.

I have heard from multiple people this weekend about how much the like the skittles jerseys and pants.  They are very creative, and the teams play well!  They have faced some great competition tough, especially in the game against the Nor Cal Jokers.  The goaltending in that game was impeccable.

The Cub division started and ended today.  It is always great to see the future of the sport have their first experience at a NARCh event.  Look for pictures from that division posted by Daryn later.

The Revolution program seems to be growing each and every event that they participate in.  Yoshi and Jose spend a lot of time getting these kids ready to play, and it shows.  They also have a great set of uniforms, looking as good as they are playing out here this weekend.  I am sure you will see their name mentioned a few times in tomorrow's recap.

Just over 24 hours to go here in Irvine... it should be a great time!