Playoff upset still a highlight
LaBarbera was born in Burnaby but his ties to Prince George go back to 1993 when he was 13 and moved to the city from Langley with his parents, Debbie and Tony, and brothers Adam and Matt. His brothers now live in Calgary and his parents are planning to move there from Prince George next spring.
LaBarbera played two seasons of bantam hockey for the Farr Fabricating Kings and had no hesitation when asked to pick out his minor hockey highlight. It happened in the playoffs when Farr took on the older boys on the major team (Chieftain Auto Parts) and beat them 4-3 in overtime in Game 2 of the bantam regional playoffs, a qualifier for the provincial championship. Chieftain recovered and won the series in Game 3 but LaBarbera says he’ll never forget the 73 saves he made in the game before that.
“They were the 15-year-old team and they were way better than us – we didn’t have a whole lot of talent but we had some hardworking guys,” he said.
“I’m buddies with a lot of those guys I played with when I was 14 and we still talk about that game. It was a big deal for us.”