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The Victoria Cougars of the Vancouver Junior Hockey League sit in third place in the South Division, three points back of the Saanich Braves. The Cougars have two critical games this week on the schedule.

The first of the two games is against the Braves at Pearkes Recreation Centre. The Cougars are five points back with 45 and have five games remaining in the season. They must win in Saanich and they must win the following game when they drive up to Campbell River Friday to take on the Storm, who currently occupy second place in the North Division. The Storm are two points back of the division-leading Nanaimo Buccaneers and want first place back.

Neither game will be easy for Victoria, who have been on a slide as of late. They have gone 0-4-1 starting with a 3-1 loss to the Oceanside Generals on January 19.

Their final four games of the regular season are on the road. They are in for a fight.

On Friday, Feb. 9 the Saanich Braves and the Nanaimo Buccaneers will tee-up against each other. It is the unofficial VSN Game of the Week as it is a battle between divisional leaders, both of whom wish to remain in the pole position going into the post-season.

It appears that 19-year-old Victoria product Cameron Coutre of the Westshore Wolves will likely win the league points race. He is eight points up on Darren Hards of the Campbell River Storm and currently has one game in-hand. He will nearly double his output from the 2016-2017 season where he earned 34 points in 31 games. He is currently at 59 points with five games remaining.

Hards of Prince George is also 19-years-old. The Storm are capable of blowing teams out. During their past two games they have scored seven goals each. The points race isn’t over, until it is over.

Hards has Brandon Tutte of the Wolves on his heals one point back with 50. The 20-year-old Victoria native has two games coming up against the young Peninsula Panthers. It is likely that Tutte will pass Hards before the tougher final few games of the season. The top three in the scoring race should go down to the wire.

It is highly unlikely that any goaltender in the league is going to surpass the stunning goals against average that 20-year-old Surrey native Liam Murphy has established this season at 1.57. His win-loss record is outstanding at 11-2-1. Of course it is easier being a goaltender for an elite junior B team like the Storm.

NORTH DIVISION
TEAM GP W L T TP
Buccaneers 44 35 7 0 72
Storm 44 32 6 4 70
Generals 44 16 22 1 38
Glacier Kings 43 4 38 0 9
VIEW FULL STANDINGS »
SOUTH DIVISION
TEAM GP W L T TP
Braves 43 23 16 2 50
Islanders 45 21 19 0 47
Cougars 43 21 19 2 45
Wolves 43 20 21 1 42
Panthers 43 19 23 0 39
VIEW FULL STANDINGS »
SCORING LEADERS
PLAYER GP G A PTS
C. Coutre (WSW) 38 28 31 59
D. Hards (CRS) 37 25 26 51
B. Tutte (WSW) 35 22 28 50
M. Jallabert (NAN) 31 21 27 48
D. Frank (CRS) 33 21 27 48
VIEW FULL LIST »
GOALIE LEADERS
GOALIE GP W GAA SV%
L Murphy (CRS) 17 11 1.57 .934
N Reinhart (VIC) 14 7 2.29 .913
R Mathieson (SAN) 34 17 2.48 .929
D Krall (NAN) 25 17 2.59 .925
P Ostermann (VIC) 33 16 2.72 .915
VIEW FULL LIST »

 

 

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