(Update 8:00 p.m.) - It was an inspiring evening of hockey in Humboldt, Saskatchewan on Wednesday.
Nearly six months removed from a fatal bus crash, the Humboldt Broncos returned to the ice for the first game of their SJHL season.
After opening the scoring in the second period, the Broncos lost to the Nipawin Hawks 2-1 in what both a valent effort and a great hockey game.
— TSN (@TSN_Sports) September 13, 2018
The sold-out crowd delivered a standing ovation at the end of the game before the team honoured the 16 members lost to the crash.
Humboldt will take on the Hawks again on Friday night.
(Original Story) - Humboldt Saskatchewan's Elgar Petersen Arena is sold out tonight to watch the hometown Broncos play their first regular-season game since the tragic bus crash in April.
The game, currently being broadcast commercial-free across Canada on TSN, is tied at zero after the first period between the Broncos and visiting Nipawin Hawks.
Before the opening faceoff, a touching ceremonial puck drop was held in honour of the fallen Broncos' team members with several surviving team members and returning players Derek Patter and Brayden Camrud.
Any concern about the Broncos being able to ice a competitive team after the fatal accident has faded after the first period where the Broncos outshot the Hawks and looked solid on the defensive end.
TSN has sent an all-star crew to cover the game, including legendary play-by-play man Chris Cuthbert as well as analysts James Duthie and Bob McKenzie.
Christina Haugan, wife of late Humboldt Broncos coach Darcy Haugan, shares a story about Darcy and league officials. pic.twitter.com/eweZi0OyAy— TSN (@TSN_Sports) September 13, 2018
There's still two periods left in what is a very entertaining hockey game between two competitive SJHL teams and you can click here to watch it live.