California Rubber

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Jr. Sharks, GSE alum Yates’ BCHL jersey heading to Hockey Hall of Fame


Rylan Yates is going to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

An Antioch native who played several years of roller hockey (River Rats, Quakes, Tsunamis) and then ice hockey with the San Jose Jr. Sharks and the Golden State Elite Eagles, Yates is spending the 2022-23 season playing junior hockey for the BCHL’s Nanaimo Clippers.

Last month on Nov. 11, during a special Remembrance Day game, the Clippers wore a very unique jersey designed by Lieutenant Tristan Robertson, a Combat Information Divisional Officer, Navy Fleet School Pacific, in the Royal Canadian Navy. Yates had a stellar game that night, scoring the game-winning goal and an assist as the Clippers defeated the Alberni Valley Bulldogs 4-1. He was also named the second star of the game.

In light of his accomplishments, his jersey was chosen to be sent to the Hockey Hall of Fame. The jersey will be held in the archives and brought out to be shown in various displays, as needed.

“Your (team’s) contribution helps us to preserve and display a wonderful collection of hockey artifacts to over 300,000 guests annually,” stated a Hockey Hall of Fame archivist in an email to the Clippers. “The contents of our showcases are rotated every year. This is done for conservation purposes and as an attempt to provide a thoroughly new experience for any guest who visits annually. If an artifact is off display at any given time, it will be available for one of our highly regarded travelling exhibits. Otherwise, all artifacts are preserved in their proper climate-controlled archives for preservation and research purposes.”

The Remembrance Day specialty jersey logo replaces the traditional three-mast Clippers ship, with a depiction of the K101 HMCS Nanaimo, a Flower-class corvette that served with the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. The ship served both coasts during World War II and the jersey’s color scheme is based off the Royal Canadian Navy’s Admiralty Camouflage from World War II and was recently seen on HMCS Regina from the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic.

“Being able to involve the Navy in designing our specialty jersey this season made the event so much more meaningful, and Lieutenant Robertson did an amazing job,” said Clippers director of business operations Robb Hunter. “The team also had the opportunity to tour the current HMCS Nanaimo and the crew with an autographed jersey.”

The rest of the game-worn Clippers Remembrance Day jerseys were auctioned off on the Clippers website,

After playing for GSE and the Jr. Sharks, Yates moved to BC to play in the CSSHL for his Bantam and Minor Midget years. He then played 16U for the Wenatchee Wilderness and was drafted by the Northern Cyclones in the NCDC for his first year of juniors. The NAHL’s Odessa Jackalopes signed Yates the year after that. Longing to return to BC, Yates joined the Clippers this year for his third year of junior hockey.

Photo/Island Images Photography

— Matt Mackinder

(December 19, 2022)

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