December 10, 2012, Kamloops, BC (ISN) – The Kamloops Blazers (24-7-1-2) scored twice in the first 31 seconds of the third period to cruise to a 4-1 victory over the Vancouver Giants (8-23-0-0) on Sunday night. Brendan Ranford had a goal and an assist and Chase Souto scored twice for the Blazers.
The first period was a chippy period as the Giants seemed to try and intimidate the Blazers. It ended up getting both teams in the penalty box. The Blazers had an early five on three power play but did not score. The Blazers had their chances, but once again couldn’t bear down to finish them off. The Blazers outshot the Giants 19-7 in the period, but the game was scoreless.
After a scrum at the end of the first period, the Blazers found themselves short to start the second period. Tim Bozon, Sam Grist, and Tyler Hansen were all out with 10-minute misconducts. The Giants scored the game’s first goal on a two on one. Cain Franson snapped a shot off the post and in to give the Giants a 1-0 lead 3:21 into the period. Once the Blazers got their veterans back, they tallied as Matt Needham set up Chase Souto as he blasted a shot past 16-year-old goaltender Payton Lee. The game was tied at 1-1 through two periods.
The Blazers finished the last 24 seconds of the second period. The hockey club came out in the third period and scored 18 seconds in. Colin Smith set up Brendan Ranford right in front and Tim Bozon got his stick on it to give the Blazers a 2-1 lead. Off the face off, the Blazers regrouped in their own zone and a give and go play from Smith and Ranford allowed Ranford to snap home his 11th goal of the season only 13 seconds later to give the Blazers a 3-1 cushion 31 seconds into the third period. From there, the Blazers just cruised along eliminating any chances and only allowing four shots on goal in the third period. Chase Souto added an empty net goal for a 4-1 victory.
Taran Kozun earned the win for the Blazers with 24 saves and was the game’s second star. Payton Lee took the loss, but earned the game’s third star for his efforts.
Colin Smith has taken the WHL scoring lead away from teammate JC Lipon after recording two assists tonight. Lipon will now fly to Calgary tomorrow to join Canada’s National Junior Team selection camp.
The Blazers will now depart for Calgary to prepare for a game against the Hitmen on Tuesday, December 11th.