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The Saanich Braves and the Campbell River Storm both won back-to-back games this weekend to close within one point of first place in their respective divisions.

In the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League, the Nanaimo Buccaneers are holding down first in the North Division one point ahead of the Storm going into Sunday’s prospect’s game in CR at the Rod Brind’Amour Arena.

The Victoria Cougars are being hunted by the Braves in the South Division, also separated by a single point.

Friday, the Storm washed into Nanaimo and sunk them (Buccaneers are ocean going people, yes?) by the score of 4-2. Remarkably both teams went 0/7 on the powerplay.

The Storm outshot the Buccaneers 44-25.

It was a feisty game with 11 majors handed out, 10 during the third period alone.

Four different Storm players scored once each. Aiden Sutherland scored the game winner from Pearce Messer and Timon Prexler at 9:40 of the third. The goal sparked 104 minutes in penalties including a gross misconduct to Campbell River’s Joe Gage at the 20-minute mark.

The fourth goal was an empty-netter, short-handed marker by Brett Marker at 19:22. The goal was unassisted.

Derek Krall manned the net for Nanaimo, while it was Liam Murphy who earned the win for the Storm.

Saturday, the Storm played a much more calm game defeating the Comox Valley Glacier Kings 4-1. The Storm similarly outshot the Glacier Kings 43-24, as they had against Nanaimo. Again they spread the scoring around, with four different players finding the back of the net.

Davis Frank scored the game winner during the first period to put the Storm up 2-0. The goal was assisted by Dawson Frank at 16:16. The two Franks are age 15 and 18 respectively. They are both hometown boys.

Campbell River went ½ on the man advantage while the Glacier Kings were 0/4.

Carson Schamerhorn earned the win in net for the Storm. The 20-year-old hails from Vernon. Braedyn Funke of Sherwood Park, AB was in goal for Comox.

Buccaneers 35 27 7 0 55
Storm 34 26 6 2 54
Generals 35 14 17 1 32
Glacier Kings 35 4 30 0 9


The Saanich Braves took on the Kerry Park Islanders twice this weekend in a back-to-back, home-and-home set, where they won both games.

Friday, in Mill Bay, they won by the score of 6-2. Six different Braves players scored with Ryan Strange netting the game-winner at 9:26 of the third period. Devin Fraser assisted.

Jarrett Mallet opened the scoring at 6:00 of the first for the Islanders, with Zach Guerra tying the game up at 17:45. Sean Ramsey earned the only assist on the goal.

Parker Ellis scored the only goal of the second period. The teams skated to their respective dressing rooms with the Islanders up 2-1.

The Braves scored five unanswered goals during the third period.

Both powerplays went 0/3. The Braves outshot the Islanders 39-26. In net it was Parker Swanson for the Islanders and Riley Matheison for the Braves.

Saturday, at Pearkes Arena, the Braves held a lead of 1-0 for two periods, as Michael Sproule opened the scoring at 8:37 of the first and then Evan Easton evened the score at 8:06 of the third.

One-minute and eight seconds later, Trevor Owens buried the winner from Guerra and Elliott MacIssac.

The Braves outshot the Islanders 37-31. The only powerplay goal of the game was Easton’s goal.

Again Matheison manned the Braves net, while Chase Anderson took the loss for the Islanders.

Cougars 34 19 13 1 40
Braves 35 18 14 1 39
Wolves 34 16 16 1 34
Islanders 35 14 17 0 32
Panthers 35 15 19 0 31

From the VIJHL website:

The Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League has released the rosters for the 2018 VIJHL Prospects Game. Forty-two of the league’s rising young stars will meet at Campbell River’s Rod Brind’Amour Arena on Sunday, January 7, 2018 for a North versus South showdown.

“It’s a truly special experience for the players assembled from across the VIJHL who have the opportunity to showcase their skills before hundreds of the passionate hockey fans in Campbell River and the scouting staff in attendance,” said VIJHL President Barb Byrne on announcing the lineups.

Named to the Prospects North squad are forwards Dawson Frank, Booker Chacalias, Pearce Messer, Kyle Kaufmann, Luc Wilson, Brett Kinley, Finn Withey, Jalen Price, Ryan Butler, Noah Kelly, Landon Dziadyk and Greyson Weme, defensemen Dylan Hartl, Logan Cursley, Aiden Sutherland, Timon Prexler, Erik Hanus and Mauro D’Alessandro, goaltenders Derek Krall, Spencer Deakin and Jacob Sweet.

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