Sawan Gill pictured scoring his first goal in the KIJHL. Phil McLachlan/File

Fernie defenceman among KIJHL stars of the week

Sawan Gill helped his team earn wins over the Thunder Cats and Nitehawks

Fernie defenceman Sawan Gill was last week voted into the top-three KIJHL stars of the week.

Alongside Gill in stars of the week for October 28 to November 3 was Kevin-Thomas Walters and Andrew Palm.

The KIJHL explained in a release why each player was chosen.

After being held off the scoresheet in a 3-2 loss to the Princeton Posse on Nov. 1, Walters was named a game star for the North Okanagan Knights as he netted a hat-trick, including the game-winning goal, in a 4-1 win over the Osoyoos Coyotes. The Vernon natives winner came on the power-play with 15:59 remaining in the second period. He is the first star of the week.

“I felt like I had a productive night in Osoyoos. I was extremely happy with my play and ultimately it helped lead up to the successful outcome,” says Walters, who has nine goals and 15 points in 17 games. “I applaud my teammates for making great plays to get the puck to me in key areas. Scoring big goals are always awesome, scoring game-winners are extremely rewarding. Reflecting and knowing that I contributed in helping our team win is extremely fulfilling for me.”

Palm picked up a pair of wins for the Revelstoke Grizzlies to earn the second star of the week. He earned the game star Nov. 1 in a 2-1 win against the Sicamous Eagles turning aside 34 of 35 shots. The next night, against the Eagles again, the Whistler native turned aside 19 of 21 shots in a 7-2. With the wins, Palm improved to 4-2 with a 2.61 goals against average and .916 save percentage.

“I thought I had one of my best games of the year,” said Palm. “I made some highlight saves and was happy to be rewarded for it.”

Gill, a Fernie Ghostriders defenceman, received the third star as he helped his team earn wins over the Creston Valley Thunder Cats, 5-4, and Beaver Valley Nitehawks, 4-2. Against the Thunder Cats, Gill scored the overtime winner, which earned him the game star. Against the Nitehawks he collected an assist. The Calgary native now has a goal and seven points in 15 games.

“I thought getting four points this weekend was huge for us and a step in the right direction,” said Gill. “Especially the game in Creston. Everyone was buzzing and it was a good team effort and it was great to be able to contribute by scoring in OT.”

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