Hometown Hero coming through!
Born in New West Minister but Chilliwack has been his home ever since!
Having your Midget A2 coach call and say that the Chilliwack Chiefs will be needing you to suit up in a back-up roll against the Prince George Spruce Kings in the last regular season game of the year would be a shock to anyone. This is exactly what happened to Aiden Kirkpatrick when his coach Sean Hannah gave him that call. Although in shock, Aiden jumped on this opportunity and told his coach he’d be ready to go!
With a win, the Chiefs would finish second ahead of Penticton in the BCHL standing, meaning that they would have home ice advantage if and when the Chiefs meet the winner of the interior division in the BCHL final!
After a slow start to the game the Chiefs fell down 0-3 in the first period to the Spruce Kings who also are fine tuning their game heading into the playoffs. Head Coach and General Manager Jason Tatarnic had seen enough and look down to the young goal keeper and said “Let’s go, you’re in”. With a face as white as the snow falling down today, Aiden looked up at Jason and said “Who me?”. Well I’m not sure if the rules have changed but if you’re making a goalie change I’m pretty sure you only have one other option. “Yes you! Get in there!” Jason said, trying to hold a professional face while laughing inside at his response.
Now when a team goes down 0-3 in one period it can be a combination of a few things, but in this case it was pretty clear that the players in front of the starting goalie just weren’t playing well enough. That meant that young Aiden had his hands full. So you have to picture this. This young man might have been thinking that he was going to have a regular old Sunday, but within hours, all this has changed. On top of that, he’s now actually heading into the game!
To be honest the Chiefs were not playing well at all, now they have a young Midget A2 goalie going in the net. Even if Prince George were to put five goals past Aiden this would still be a pretty cool story for him to tell all his buddies back at school on Monday. This wasn’t the case. He came in and made some massive saves for his new team that was struggling in front of him. After these saves, it was obvious that the players were starting to believe in this kid. They felt that if they gave the same effort as Aiden that maybe this game would turn around. Save after save this young man was starting to build confidence in his players and before you knew it they started playing hard and filling the net with goals. As the time dwindled down Aiden and the Chiefs were looking at a 4-3 victory over the Spruce Kings and now in second place!
A lot of nerves, a few huge saves, and no goals against! Pretty impressive young man! Nicely done Aiden Kirkpatrick, CMHA is proud of you!