saanich tigers

Kamloops Cruises to Gold Medal

By Janice Huckin

Victoria BC (ISN) – The 2012 Jr. B Lacrosse provincials wrapped up at Bear Mountain Arena Sunday and it was the Kamloops Venom capturing gold, going undefeated through the tournament and defeating the Delta Islanders in the final match-up. Delta takes home silver and in the bronze medal game, Saanich got their only win of the weekend in the bronze medal game and it came against their archrivals, the Westshore Bears.

The bronze medal was up first, game 7 of the tournament. Westshore had won the earlier round robin game between the two and it was the Bears taking the first lead, Nolan Ryan going end-to-end and scoring unassisted on the power play at 7:01. Saanich got on the board a little over 5 minutes later. This was also a special teams tally but came shorthanded as Trevor Hansen cut across in front and beat Westshore’s starting goaltender Cody Cook at 12:15. That was all the scoring in the opening period but there was a lot more action of the extra curricular variety. We had earlier discussed that 6 games had been played with no fights – that shutout streak ended at the 19:32 mark and I guess if you would have predicted a fight, it probably have come in a game between these two fierce rivals. In any event, several majors for fighting, face-masking, and a few misconducts saw 5 players in total ejected. Shots on goal favoured the Bears by a 15-6 margin but things were tied up on the scoreboard.

Westshore started things off in the second period, just 1:41 in, Sam Chiasson getting a breakaway and putting the host team up by a goal, that tally coming shorthanded. It took almost 13 minutes before the next goal was scored but it started a 3-goal run for the Saanich squad. Craig King scored unassisted at 14:15 going over top of Cook to tie things up. Just 9 seconds later, off the ensuing faceoff it was Quinton Hamilton putting the Tigers up by a goal and at 15:18, Ethan Garland found the back of the net. That put the Bears down by a pair and also marked the end to Cook’s stint in net as he was replaced by Will Chiasson. The Bears got within a goal right away, Kelly Schiarizza scoring at 15:33, as he powered to the front of the net. That was how the second period ended, with Saanich holding a 1-goal lead by a 4-3 score. Shots on goal favoured the Tigers 17-14 after 40 minutes.

The Bears were unable to solve Jared Jackson in the Saanich net through the final 30 minutes as the Tigers put three on the board. Mason Pynn scored at 6:55 and the final two goals came into the empty net as Westshore had their goaltender on the bench for the extra attacker. Both came from Ethan Garland. Garland finished with the hat trick and 1 assist for the victors. Quinton Hamilton and Craig King each chipped in a goal and 1 assist with other goals coming from Mason Pynn and Trvor Hansen. Westshore got singles from Nolan Ryan, Sam Chiasson and Kelly Schiarizza.

On to the gold medal game in which the undefeated Kamloops Venom took on the 2-1 Delta Islanders. It was another low-scoring battle that saw great goaltending at both ends as Kamloops jumped out to a 3-2 first period lead. Jimmy Latin started things off for the Venom at the 5:17 mark but Delta replied right way as Ethan Jones scored unassisted just 28 seconds later. A power play goal off the stick of Riley Donahue put Kamloops ahead at 16:42 and Donahue picked up his second just 9 seconds later, off the ensuing face-off. Delta pulled within a goal at the 18:52 mark, Evan Messenger cutting in to beat Kamloops goaltender Mitch Horsman. After 20 minutes Kamloops had the 3-2 lead and the edge in shots on goal by a margin of 14-10.

Kamloops increased the lead to 2 goals at the 5-minute mark of period 2, Braidy Jorgenson scoring on what appeared to be a crease infraction. Delta replied at 7:08 when Jordan Thauli scoring on a bouncer. They were unable to pick up any momentum from that goal and Kamloops regained their 2-goal led with a goal off the stick of Chris Case at 11:31. That was all the scoring in the middle frame and in fact just one more goal was scored in the game, that going to the Venom’s Jamie Forster into the empty net at 19:42. Kamloops’ Riley Donahue finished the game with a pair of goals, Jimmy Latin and Braidy Jorgenson each chipped in a goal and 1 assist with Chris Case getting the other goal and Colten Defrias contributing 2 assists. Delta got singles from Ethan Jones, Evan Messenger and Jordan Thauli.

Kamloops picks up gold and is travelling to Ontario to participate in the Founders Cup later in August. Delta grabs silver in a very entertaining and well-played finale to the 2012 Provincial tournament.