By Peter Kung
Victoria, BC (ISN) – Dane Feeney scored a pair of goals and the Victoria Cougars survived a third period scare to beat the Westshore Wolves 7-3 in their home opener on Sunday afternoon.
Victoria took a 4-0 lead into the third period only to have the Wolves score three times in a span of under four minutes.
Max Mois scored his first of two after he converted a Kayle Ramsay rebound into a goal only 36 seconds in. Then at 3:20, Dylan Grant threaded the puck between the left arm of Cougars goaltender Evan Roch and the near post.
Westshore pulled to within a goal on Mois’ second of the night at 4:31. Skating through the neutral zone, Chris McDonald was able to dish the puck off to Mois before getting sent into next week by an open ice hit from Jordan Davie. McDonald, who withstood the collision, was credited with his second assist of the season.
But the comeback bid would fall short as the Wolves spent more time killing penalties than anything else.
Two minutes after Mois had given Westshore some glimmer of hope, the parade to the penalty box began.
At 6:52, Clay Carson took a needless tripping penalty. 77 seconds later, Nathan Chen-Mack tipped a Garrett Brandsma point shot past Wolves netminder Matt Chester.
Grant, at 11:18, found himself sitting in the sin bin after getting whistled for hooking. Feeney, who was acquired during the offseason from the Campbell River Storm, scored 34 seconds later to give Victoria a 6-3 lead.
A cross-checking penalty to McDonald put the Cougars on another power play. Late in the man advantage, Brandsma wired a point shot past Chester with over six minutes remaining in regulation.
Joel Gordon, who was involved in his second fight of the season, tussled with Wade Johnson near the end of the game.
The Cougars, who outshot Westshore 44-22, opened the scoring with a power play goal at the nine minute mark of the first period. From in close, Feeney took a Sam Rice rebound and beat Chester high glove side.
Rice finished the game with four assists and now has two goals and seven helpers in two games.
Brody Coulter doubled the lead at 19:18 on a strange goal that surprised everyone inside the Archie Browning Sports Centre.
There was no scoring until the 1:28 mark of the second period when Ben Kinshella got hold of a Davie rebound and fired the puck home for his first goal of the season. Then at 4:10, David Marshall set up Johnson who rifled the puck just under the crossbar which in the process knocked Chester’s water bottle clear off the net.
Victoria improved to 2-0-0 on the season; meanwhile, Westshore falls to 1-2-0.
Next game for the Cougars is Thursday, September 13 against the Nanaimo Buccaneers. Game time at the Nanaimo Ice Centre, located at 750 Third Street, is 7:30 p.m.