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WHL comes to Planet Ice

Junior hockey heavyweights the Vancouver Giants are set to face the Western Hockey League’s newest team, the Victoria Royals, in exhibition action this Saturday at Cam Neely Arena at Planet Ice in Maple Ridge.

RG properties, the owners of the Planet Ice hockey arenas in Maple Ridge, Coquitlam, and Delta, bought and moved the Chilliwack Bruins WHL franchise to Victoria earlier this year.

The Royals opened their 2011 preseason on Friday with a 4-2 loss to the Kamloops Blazers on the road.

The Vancouver Giants, meanwhile, are 1-1 in preseason play after a 4-3 overtime loss to Kelowna on Friday and a 6-3 win over Kamloops on Saturday.

Maple Ridge native Connor Redmond will be suiting up for the Vancouver Giants. After injuries limited him to just 15 games last season, the 19-year-old left-winger is hoping to bounce back this season with the G-Men.

Proceeds from tickets sold online are being donated to local hockey groups. So far, more than $3,500 has been raised for the Ridge Meadows Minor Hockey Association and the Meadow Ridge Female Minor Hockey Association, said Marian Gardner, the assistant general manager at Planet Ice.

To purchase tickets online, go to and enter the promotional code “Rustlers” or “Barracudas.” The promotional code will determine where the sale came from and forward the funds to the appropriate association.

Gardner said there are still plenty of tickets available, with tickets available on game day at the door.

Tickets for general admission are $10 each, plus service charges.

The exhibition game takes place Saturday, Sept. 10 at 3 p.m., and is expected to sell out. Doors will open at 2 p.m. on the day of the event.