Local sport club brings home trophy
Members of the Petersburg Whalers pose with their trophy. Front: Kalin Pitta-Rosse, Derrick O'Soup, Steve Penrose, Eric Larson Back: Adam Petersen, Kurt Wohlhueter, Greg Kowolski
The local hockey club The Petersburg Whalers won the Rainforest Classic's B Division tournament in Juneau earlier this month.
The "Old Timer's Tournament" consisted of hockey players more than 35 years old.
The Whalers competed against teams from across Alaska including Anchorage, Juneau and Palmer.
"Petersburg has been represented in almost every single tournament," said Whaler Greg Kowolski. "This year was the second time in ten years that we've won the tournament."
The Whalers lost its first game 1-7 to a veteran team of athletes on the Anchorage Aces.
"By far they were the best team in the tournament," Kowolski said. "They consisted of ex-college skaters and semi pros. They just took it to us and schooled us."
But the Whalers stomped Juneau's Lynn Canal and Whaler goalie Paul Klein didn't let one puck in the net. The Petersburg team won 5-0.
They went on to play Palmer the same day and won 5-1, putting the Whalers into the finals where it had to face Palmer once again.
The Whalers led the championship game 4-1 through most of the contest but the Palmer team fought back and tied the score 4-4 with just more than a minute left to go.
"It came down to the wire," Kowalski said. "We were starting to get a little bit nervous."
Whaler Steve Penrose got a shot off, which earned the Whalers the win and the championship.
Adam Petersen, Kurt Wohlhueter, Kim Wohlhueter, Kalin Pitta-Rosse, Derrick O'Soup, Eric Larson, Kyle Hebert, Ian Leary, Bob Bartholomew, Gernot Bucheli and Wayne Zigarlick also played for the Whalers.