New Peninsula Panthers owners Pete Zubersky

Peninsula Panthers returned to former ownership group

Junior B team changes hands part way through the season

A pair of former Panther owners are off the bench and back in the game after purchasing the rights to the local junior-B hockey club, which was being run by the league.

John Wilson and Pete Zubersky purchased the Peninsula Panthers junior B team after weekend meetings with the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League.

“We really enjoyed our time when we did it,” said Zubersky who owned the team for eight years, until about five years ago. Wilson took over the club for two years after that. Jackson Penney took ownership about two and half years ago and relinquished it to the league last month.

Wilson learned of the team’s availability and after a call to Zubersky – and conversations with their wives, Coreen Zubersky and Val Wilson – the two families made a powerplay for ownership.

“What you see in the on-ice product is a culmination of a lot of off-ice work by volunteers and people putting together a business plan,” Wilson said of the full family commitment involved. The new owners met with players Monday night to break the news.

The Panthers saw success on the ice the past two years, earning league titles, provincial titles and finishing fourth at nationals last year.

Zubersky and Wilson will focus on rebuilding local relationships with the community, local businesses and Peninsula Minor Hockey.

“Those are the people we need to develop relationships with because without those, we’re toast,” said Zubersky. “Minor hockey is our bread and butter and we want to build those ties again.”

Parents, players and coaches wear the logos of both the minor hockey Eagles and the Panthers with pride, said minor hockey president Steve Pearce.

“Players coming out (to play) is very important. It’s important to development for the kids. With hockey skills and social skills required for life. Hockey is really secondary for 99 per cent of these kids,” Pearce said.

The old owners will resurrect old prices on Friday night (Dec. 9). All tickets for the Panthers game are $5 with a donation to the Sidney Lions Food Bank.

The team will face Comox at 7:30 p.m. at Panorama Recreation Centre.

Saturday night they host arch rivals Victoria Cougars at 7:30 p.m. Parksville is in town Dec. 16 and the Panthers make the trip to Oceanside Place Dec. 17 before breaking for the Christmas holiday.

“That’s going to give us some time to take a breath,” Zubersky said.

sports@vicnews.com

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Unemployment surpasses historic high in Greater Victoria, tourism hit hard

Hospitality and tourism sectors hurting as pandemic continues

Victoria tattoo shops respond to sex assault allegations against male artists

Carne Tattoo and Painted Lotus Studios respond to allegations

Victoria seeks court order to enforce sheltering rules in Beacon Hill Park

People being asked to move out of environmentally sensitive areas of park

Mayor not in favour of low barrier housing at Oak Bay Lodge

Process is already in place to determine future of Oak Bay Lodge

Police watchdog reviewing Victoria police-involved crash

VicPD officer collided with another car in downtown intersection

VIDEO: Langford cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 7

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Would you get a vaccine for COVID-19 when it is available?

With the number of positive COVID-19 tests skyrocketing across much of the… Continue reading

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Vancouver Island business ad unintentionally features OK gesture linked to white supremacy

Innocuous ‘OK’ gesture in cleaning franchise advertisement gets flak on social media for ‘supposedly’ promoting white supremacy

Comox Valley RCMP looking for missing woman

Ami Guthrie was last seen in Courtenay in early July

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Most Read