Local legends enjoy Cup

Al Formo is pictured with the Fred Page Cup along with his close friend Ivan McLelland in this undated Herald file photo.

If a 20-0 record isn’t enough to inspire you to come out to Wednesday night’s (November 23, 2022) Vees’ game, a trip down memory lane will.

The Vees, still unbeaten in the BCHL regular season, will add two names to their Ring of Honour when they host Salmon Arm Silverbacks at the South Okanagan Events Centre.

Al Formo and Duncan Keith will have their names in the rafters of the SOEC.

Formo served as the colour commentator on radio broadcasts from 1967 until his retirement in 2012, calling more than 2,500 games including the RBC championship in his final season. During this time he also drove the team bus, logging 240,000 km without a single accident in 27 years.

“It’s always been fun whenever I’ve sat down with Al, it’s like having a history lesson right in front of you,” Vees head coach Fred Harbinson said Monday.

“Al is extremely passionate. If you peel the skin back, he has a Penticton Vees logo on his chest. Al was always able to find the bright side in things.”

Keith, who played for the Penticton junior team (then known as Panthers), went on to win both the Conn Smythe and Norris trophies, two Olympic gold medals plus three Stanley Cups as a member of the Chicago Blackhawks.

“Duncan was here for two seasons and he put up 82 points in his second season,” Harbinson said of the defenceman. “I was coaching another team at the time and remember watching him. His feet were so quick and he developed into a decorated defenceman. He has also given a lot back to our community.”

With the Vees still unbeaten, Harbinson is expecting a tough challenge from the Silverbacks (11-7-0-1).

“The last time we played we won 3-1 with an empty netter,” he said. “They are a good, physical team with good depth and strong goaltending. Their organization has done a really good job at getting them back into the better half of the league.”

Following Wednesday’s game, the Vees hit the road for games in Alberni Valley and Powell River.

Tickets for the Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2022 game are $10. To purchase tickets: valleyfirstitx.ca