The West Kelowna Warriors have a new owner and new President of Hockey and Business Operations.
While the new management has said that there will be no current changes to the on-ice staff, the feeling of a new slate can be felt among the franchise and the West Kelowna fans with the arrival of new owner John Murphy and new President Chris Laurie.
That fresh slate feeling may be exactly what the Warriors need as they sit 6th in the Interior division with a 4-15-3-2 record and 13 total points. Both Laurie and Murphy stated that they have confidence in the Warriors current bench boss Brandon West.
“Obviously there’s room to improve,” said Laurie, who spent three years as the GM of a North American Hockey League franchise in Amarillo, Texas. “I can say that Brandon and his group have done a good job of keeping the guys competitive and keeping them focused. In meeting with him, you can tell he wants to have a good second half of the season and going into playoffs.”
The past two weeks of the BCHL schedule has not been kind to the Warriors. Currently on a six-game, 28-day stretch since their last home game, West Kelowna’s struggles have continued since their last win on Oct. 18.
Near the halfway point of the season and by the grace of the BCHL’s playoff format, the Warriors still have a good chance to make the post-season.
Fresh faces in the front office and a new energy and potential culture shock with the emergence of Laurie’s experience in junior hockey, may be just what the Warriors doctor ordered as the season continues.
A fan base desperate for a boost in the thus far lackluster season may have gotten their wish, but it will be up to the Warriors on the ice to perform when they return to home ice on Nov. 22.
West Kelowna plays its first home game since Oct. 25 when it hosts the Wenatchee Wild.