Cross-Check Cancer fundraiser tops $16,000.

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Bruce Hallihan - The Daily Gleaner - February 26, 2018
Michele Berry didn't want to jinx a fundraising drive by the Fredericton Mr. Automotive Bantam AAA Caps by publicly stating a financial goal.

But she admits now she was hoping Cross-Check Cancer, in support of two families affected by cancer, would raise "maybe $5,000 to $8,000.”

Berry underestimated the community's benevolence for the fathers of Caps forwards Owen Tran and Zander Best -- Dr. Peter Tran and James Best, who are are undergoing cancer treatments.

The proceeds from Sunday's game against the North West Pionniers at York Arena generated a whopping $16,400, which will go towards the two families, as well as as the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada.

Peter stayed for the whole game and James made it almost to the end," Berry said. "They were extremely grateful and I think had a really good time.”

An estimated crowd of 700 made for a memorable day for the players.

Berry, who spearheaded the fundraiser along with fellow hockey moms Lisa Brewer and Angela Leaman, said her son, defenceman Ben Soke, "thought it was really cool to have that many people there," she said.

I asked him 'Did it make it better or did it make you nervous?' He said, 'No, it made it way better.’"

The 50/50 winners, Kari and Peter Clark, donated the $689 prize back to the event.
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"That was such a nice gesture," Berry said. "People were dropping $100 bills in the donation box, the canteen and prize table did really well, as did the chuck a puck contest.

"It was just a good day all-around. Everything went as well as it could have.”

EDZA West president Ray Arseneau said, "I was so impressed with how that team rallied around two families and brought together our community for such a great cause.

"Years from now, those players will not likely remember the score but will remember how important it is to be a good citizen," Arseneau said. "I salute head coach Trent Brewer, his staff, and their entire parent group. A big shout out to our entire hockey community for being part of this.”

Owen Tran scored the game's first goal after being set up by Zander Best.

"How beautiful is that?" Arseneau said.

Best added an empty-net goal with 44 seconds left to clinch a 4-2 victory.

Xzander Pierce and Demitri Shakotko also scored for the Caps to back winning goalie Zachary Major, who made 27 saves. The Caps, who also beat North West 5-3 on Saturday, now sit first in the eight-team Irving Oil bantam AAA minor provincial league with one game remaining.

Fredericton has a 20-1-6 record for 46 points, one more than the 21-3-3 Moncton Scorpions. North West is third at 14-10-4.