The Victoria Cougars hope to continue their dominance over the Campbell River Storm when the two teams square off for the fourth time this Thursday.
Game time at the Archie Browning Sports Centre, located at 1151 Esquimalt Road, is 7:15 p.m.
Victoria is 3-0-0 against the Storm this year and is 8-1-0 dating back to last season.
In their last meeting, the Cougars shut out Campbell River 3-0. Scoring for Victoria was Anthony Bonner, Brody Coulter, and Ben Kinshella. In net was Kiefer Giroux who faced only 17 shots that game.
Mark Van Helvoirt and his troops just completed a stretch of three games in four nights in which they collected four out of a possible six points. Last Thursday, the Cougars downed the visiting Kerry Park Islanders 2-1 in a shootout before dropping a 4-2 decision to the hometown Saanich Braves 24 hours later.
Victoria (19-4-1) last saw action on Grey Cup Sunday when it beat the visiting Peninsula Panthers 4-2. Netting the goals for the Cougars were Mark Walton and Coulter who sits atop of the league leaderboard with 45 points.
Giroux turned aside 19 shots for his league leading 11th win.
Steve Axford had his 18 game point streak come to an end after being held off the score sheet for the first time since Sep. 17.
Campbell River (7-15-1) enters Thursday’s game having lost four in a row.
For the Storm, it must start the game off quickly to have any chance of winning. In their last six games, they have faced deficits of 3-0, 5-0, 3-0, 4-0, 1-0, and 1-0.
After getting shut out by both the Braves and Cougars in between Nov. 16-18; Campbell River exploded for nine goals this past weekend. However, it was not enough as the Storm dropped a 6-5 overtime decision to Peninsula on Friday before losing 6-4 on Saturday to Kerry Park.
Campbell River has a European on its roster. Davis Sprukts, who stands six-foot-three and weighs in at 205 pounds, hails from Jelgava, Latvia. The 18-year-old forward has one goal and four assists for five points in ten games.
The Storm has been dreadful against teams from the South Island Division, going 2-11-1. Conversely, Campbell River is 5-4-0 versus teams within their own division.
Tyson Rennie, who leads the Storm with 21 points, is tied for 16th place in league scoring.
STANDINGS: Victoria – 1st place, 39 points, South Island Division. Campbell River – 3rd place, 15 points, North Island Division
TEAM LEADERS: Victoria – Brody Coulter, 22 goals; Steve Axford, 24 assists; Rhys Williams, 66 penalty minutes. Campbell River – Alex Grupe, Dane Feeney, 10 goals; Tyson Rennie, 13 assists; Jesse Spooner, 120 penalty minutes
GOALTENDERS: Victoria – Kiefer Giroux (1.95 goals against average, .922 save percentage); Evan Roch (2.57 goals against average, .890 save percentage). Campbell River – Nick Babich (3.72 goals against average, .893 save percentage); Andy Salazar (4.64 goals against average, .861 save percentage)
SEASON SERIES: Victoria leads, 3-0-0
PAST RESULTS/FUTURE MEETINGS:
September 9, 2011. Victoria Cougars 4 @ Campbell River Storm 1
September 15, 2011. Campbell River Storm 4 @ Victoria Cougars 5
November 18, 2011. Victoria Cougars 3 @ Campbell River Storm 0
January 27, 2012. Victoria Cougars @ Campbell River Storm
February 16, 2012. Campbell River Storm @ Victoria Cougars
HOME/AWAY RECORDS: Victoria – Home, 10-1-1. Campbell River – Away, 3-8-0
STREAKS: Victoria, 1-0-0. Campbell River, 0-3-1
LAST TEN: Victoria, 7-3-0. Campbell River, 4-5-1