Story and Photos by Christian J. Stewart – ISN
September 19, 2012, Victoria, BC (ISN) – A five-goal second period explosion propelled the Victoria Cougars to a 8-1 win over the Westshore Wolves in Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL) action Wednesday night at Bear Mountain Arena in Victoria.
Just when the Westshore Wolves were probably starting to feel good about their 3-2 start to their VIJHL season, along came the Victoria Cougars to remind the young, upstart Wolves just how much harder they will need to work to become an elite level team in the “V.”
After securing a 2-0 first period lead, the Cougars exploded for 5 goals in the second period and cruised to a 8-1 win over the Wolves to stay perfect so far this season.
Brody Coulter’s uncontested wrap around would give the Cougar’s a 1-0 lead just under 5 minute into the game (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
Doing the bulk of the damage for the Cougars was their top line of Brody Coulter, Sam Rice and Dane Feeney who accounted for five points each on the night, including three goals by Coulter and two from Feeney. This trio looked unstoppable and with the size and skill of Coulter and Rice mixed in with the water bug quickness of Feeney, they could be a lethal combination down the road for many teams.
Westshore’s Brett Lervold moves the puck out of his zone during the first period Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
The game did not start well for the Cougars however, as Nathan Chen-Mack was ejected from the game just 8 seconds in for a check from behind. Later in the period, the same fate befell the Cougar’s Wade Johnson and the Cougars and Head Coach Mark Van Helvoirt had some quick line juggling to do.
David Marshall, here in the first period, would later score the Cougar’s fifth goal in their 8-1 win Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
The early ejection to Chen-Mack did not seem to phase the Cougars, and with Feeney being bumped up to the top line in place of him, Captain Brady Coulter would kick off the scoring when he picked up a loose puck behind the net and caught Wolves goalie Matt Chester going the wrong way, wrapping it into the open side for a 1-0 lead. The Cougars would add a second, courtesy of Feeney at the 18:48 mark and take that 2-0 lead into the break.
The Cougar’s Jordan Davie looks for a path to the net during Wednesday’s game (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
In the second, the Coug’s would start the period on the power-play thanks to a first period ending penalty on the Wolves Brandon Nicholson and the Cougars would make them pay just a minute into the power-play when Mark Walton would score.
Brandon Nicholson’s first period ending penalty would prove costly as the Cougars would score on the power-play early in the second (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
Coulter would score his second of the night at the 4:11 mark and suddenly the score was 4-0. That would be enough to chase Wolves starter Chester who was pulled in favour of 16-year old Alec Dillon.
Cougar goalie Evan Roch was not terribly busy, stopping 21 of 22 shots for the win Wednesday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
Dillon fared no better against the Cougar attack and just 42 seconds later was rudely greeted on the first shot he saw by a laser beam to the top corner from David Marshall to make it 5-0.
The Cougars continued to hem the Wolves in their own end, and just a few minutes later goals by Feeney at 8:34 and Rhys Williams at 10:31 mad it 7-0 and the rout was on.
Dane Feeney would snipe this shot past Wolves goalie Alec Dillon for his second goal of the night, and the Cougars sixth, in the 8-1 win (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
To the Wolves credit they did not give up, and shortly after Cougar goaltender Evan Roch was sent sprawling after trying to avoid a charging Wolves player, the Wolves Clay Carson came in off the wing and put a soft one by Roch to get the Wolves on the board.
Westshore’s Josh Bloomenthal grimaces as he moves away from the forecheck pressure of the Cougar’s Garrett Brandsma (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
That would be all the Wolves would muster however and after the Cougars Coulter would score a power-play marker at 14:39 of the third period for his hat-trick, that would be it for the Cougars too and they would coast the rest of the way to the 8-1 win.
It seemed that all the Westshore Wolves could do was watch on Wednesday as the Cougar’s Brody Coulter appeared to have the puck on his stick at every moment, scoring a hat-trick and adding two assists in the Cougar’s 8-1 win (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / Island Sports News)
Final shots in the game were 36 for the Cougars and 22 for the Wolves. The Cougars improve to 5-0-0 on the season while the Wolves fall to 3-3-0.