VIJHL roundup: Friday, October 7th

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The Kerry Park Islanders defeated the Saanich Braves tonight at Pearkes Recreation Centre, winning by the score of 4-2.

After a scoreless first period the Islanders netted four consecutive goals including two 36 seconds apart to open the scoring, before the Braves managed two power-play goals at 15:49 and 18:56 of the third period. The late goals came from Gavin Grewal and Connor Birmingham.

Caleb Franklin and Kayden Peck each earned a goal and an assist, while Tanner Tiel and Will Connors rounded out the scoring for the visitors.

It was a rough, penalty-filled game, where the Braves’ Nick Guerra, the league leader in goals (19) and points (26) was kept to one assist.

The Braves pulled goalie Riley Mathieson in favour of the extra attacker with 30 seconds to go, but failed to capitalise.

Shots were 30/39 Islanders. The power-plays saw plenty of action going 2/8 and 2/10 respectively.

The Islanders entered the game with a 4-4 record and sit in third place in the South Division. Tonight’s victory moved them two points closer to the division leading Braves and Victoria Cougars.

Meanwhile the Peninsula Panthers continue their rough start to the 2015-2016 season for their new coach Brad Tippett, getting smashed at home by the score of 11-2 to the Oceanside Generals. Ethan Sundstrum and Brandon Roberge each scored a hat-trick; they were credited with four and five points respectively. The Panthers are now 1-9-0-2 and sit last overall in the VIJHL with just four points.

The Generals managed 35 shots while the Panthers got off 22, with only three taken during the third period.

The Campbell River Storm move their record in the North Division to 10-2, by shutting out the Nanaimo Buccaneers 4-0 in Campbell River, while the north island neighbours, the Comox Valley Glacier Kings won again, this time taking out the Westshore Wolves 3-2 in the valley.

Although the Storm appear to be dominating the North Division again this year, the Glacier Kings appear to be stronger than last year and perhaps can challenge the Storm. In the South Division there are just three points separating the Braves and the Cougars, while the Cougars have two games in hand. Interestingly the Islanders have played one less game than the Cougars and have accumulated 10 points – there appears to be some parity in the South Division this year, although it’s early.

During the 2015-2016 season, the Cougars ran away with the division and the league going 41-5-1-1 amassing a total of 84 points, which was 35 more points that the second place Peninsula Panthers.

The Storm won the North Division with 80 points and 38 wins.

The Glacier Kings and Generals will meet Saturday night as will the Panthers and the Islanders, both games are slated for 7:30 PM.

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