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Local youth had championship season on ice hockey team

April 22, 2004

Kevin Paynter, a fourth grader at La Cañada Elementary School, has had an unbelievable season playing goalie for the Sylmar Pee Wee Tigers ice hockey travel team.

His team experienced an incredible season as the Tigers won 15 games, lost only one and tied another. They were undefeated in their Thanksgiving and Christmas tournaments and were finalists in Arizona over the President's Day Tournament.

Their incredible record enabled them to compete in the Southern California Finals in Long Beach where they won 5-1 to take the Southern California title.

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That victory was their ticket to play in the state championship at San Jose. The team swept all its games in the semifinals, with Paynter scoring a 5-0 shutout in one of them.

They went into the finals in first place, but unfortunately lost the title in a triple sudden death overtime, 3-2, to the Santa Rosa Flyers.

Paynter said he loves his team and looks forward to playing for them next season. Kevin wasn't the only Paynter finding glory on the ice this year. His brother, Andrew, also played for the Squirt ice hockey travel team which also made it to the playoffs.

Next season, a third Paynter, their younger brother Ryan, will join the Mite program and all three will be involved in youth ice hockey.

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