Duncan’s own Ben Berard scored four goals against the Cowichan Valley Capitals on Saturday, a day after committing to a scholarship at Cornell University. (Citizen file)

Island hockey player gets four goals and a scholarship

Duncan native Ben Berard gets a ride at Div. 1 Cornell

Last weekend was a big one for Duncan native Ben Berard.

On Friday, he committed to an NCAA Div. 1 scholarship at Cornell University, starting in the 2019-20 season. That night, he scored once in a 7-0 win by the Powell River Kings over his hometown Cowichan Valley Capitals.

The next night, he scored four times and added an assist as his Kings defeated the Caps 7-5, locking up B.C. Hockey League Player of the Week honours.

According to Berard, it was just a coincidence that the big game came a day after he locked up his college deal.

“I don’t think I was doing anything too different,” he said, crediting the four-goal explosion to “a bit of luck. My shot was finding the back of the net.”

He did admit that it does get him fired up to play the Caps, for whom he appeared in six games as an AP between 2014-15 and 2015-16 before he signed with Powell River.

“It’s always exciting playing Cowichan,” he said. “I grew up watching them.”

Cornell has been interested in Berard since he first started playing for the Kings at the start of the 2016-17 campaign, he said, and the interest was mutual. The Ithaca, New York school has a good relationship with the Powell River team, with four players from last year’s Kings team now skating for the Big Red. Although he did communicate with other schools, Cornell was his first choice.

“Cornell was always the one I liked the most,” said Berard, who plans to study business. “It has the best combination of hockey and school.”

Including two assists he recorded in a 7-3 win over the Victoria Grizzlies on Tuesday, Berard now has 27 points (13 goals and 14 assists) in 26 games this year after posting 31 points (13 goals and 18 assists) in 56 games as a rookie.

“I definitely feel like I’ve made an improvement,” he said. “I still want to keep growing before I go to Cornell.”

Berard played his minor hockey in the Cowichan Valley through the end of bantam, then moved on to a year with the major midget South Island Royals and another with the Shawnigan Lake School prep team. Capitals head coach Brian Passmore coached Shawnigan’s bantam team when Berard was playing prep, but has still gotten to know him, and is pleased to see his success.

“He’s a great kid,” Passmore said. “I’m happy for him to get a commitment. He hurt us on the weekend, but congratulations to him.”

Not surprisingly, Berard’s current coach in Powell River is also pleased to see him doing well.

“I think we’re not even close to seeing what he’s capable of at this level” Kings head coach Kent Lewis said. “Continuing to develop and bringing that consistency every night will be important here because the next level at Cornell and in the NCAA will be a lot harder.”



kevin.rothbauer@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

A monument was unveiled during a ceremony in Tofino last week honouring Jo-Ann Fuller and Ivan Polivka. The monument will be placed on Hwy. 4 near Kennedy Lake. (Photo courtesy of Ambulance Paramedics and Emergency Dispatchers of BC)
In the line of duty: Remembering two beloved Vancouver Island paramedics

Sombre ceremony held in Tofino to mark 10th anniversary of fatal Kennedy Lake ambulance crash

Adam Ireton holds his son Weston, along with Kristen and Beckett as they celebrate Weston's last day of treatment for lukemia. (Kristen Ireton photo)
799 days: ‘Super’ Weston defeats cancer

North Island kid celebrating the end of a battle that has taken up the bulk of his life

Artists, activists and supporters stand at the ‘More Justice, More Peace’ mural in Victoria’s Bastion Square after the letter ‘S’ was painted over in black. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
ACAB removed from Victoria’s More Justice, More Peace mural

New message points to VicPD, City of Victoria for silencing BIPOC voices

(file)
Province rejects Parksville needle bylaw as counter-productive to health and safety

Mayor says he fails to understand the logic against proposed limits on hypodermic distribution

An untitled Emily Carr painting of Finlayson Point was donated to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria by brothers Ian and Andrew Burchett. The painting had been in their family for several decades. (Courtesy of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria)
Newly public Emily Carr painting depicts well-known Victoria view

Painting among several donated to Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

A woman wears a face mask and plastic gloves while browsing books as a sticker on the floor indicates a one-way direction of travel between shelves of books at the Vancouver Public Library’s central branch, after it and four other branches reopened with limited services, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, July 14, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
B.C. reports 234 new COVID cases, 1 death of senior who had attended small birthday party

Roughly 5,700 people are isolating due to being exposed to a confirmed case

Burnaby RCMP responded to a dine-and-dash suspect who fell through a ceiling in March 2020. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Suspected dine-and-dasher falls through ceiling of Burnaby restaurant

A woman believed to be dashing on her restaurant bill fell through the kitchen ceiling

A can of Canada Dry Ginger Ale is shown in Toronto on Thursday Oct. 29, 2020. The maker of Canada Dry Ginger Ale has agreed to pay over $200,000 to settle a class-action lawsuit launched by a B.C. man who alleged he was misled by marketing suggesting the soda had medicinal benefits. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Joseph O’Connal
B.C. man’s lawsuit over marketing of Canada Dry ginger ale settled for $200K

Soda’s maker, Canada Dry Mott’s Inc., denied the allegations and any liability

According to a Nanaimo RCMP press release, Jason Klughart, 28, was arrested at about 7:45 a.m. Wednesday at Port Place Shopping Centre. (News Bulletin file photo)
RCMP officer and security guard team up to detain suspect after chase in downtown Nanaimo

Jason Klughart arrested on outstanding warrant for possession of stolen property

Victoria police are asking for people's help identifying the suspect of a sexual assault that occurred early Oct. 29. (Black Press Media file photo)
VicPD searching for suspect in sexual assault incident

A woman was sexually assaulted at the 800-block of Cormorant Street just before 4 a.m. Oct. 29

A deer was spotted in October 2020 in Prince Rupert, B.C., with a bright pink yoga ball stuck in its antlers. (Kayla Vickers/Chronicles Of Hammy The Deer Official Page)
Hammy 2.0? Prince Rupert deer spotted with bright pink yoga ball stuck in antlers

The BC Conservation Officer Service is aware of the deer roaming around the city

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Kelowna Mountie hit with 2nd lawsuit in 2 months for alleged assault

Const. Julius Prommer is accused of breaking a woman’s knee during while responding to a noise complaint

Hirdeypal Batth, 24, has been charged with sexual assault and forcible confinement in relation to an incident in August 2020. (VPD handout)
Man, 24, charged with sex assault after allegedly posing as Uber driver in Vancouver

Investigators believe there could be more victims outside of the Vancouver area

This house in the 600-block of Linden Avenue in Fairfield has a Día de Muertos theme for 2020. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)
PHOTOS: Haunted Oak Bay

Residents spookify houses

Most Read