By Junior Reporter Mike Beelby
December 17, 2012, Campbell River, BC – After a redeeming win Friday night at home against Comox, the Saanich Braves journeyed north on a snowy Sunday night and came away with two points after 60 minutes of gritty, grinder-like hockey, earning a 5-2 win over the 8th place Campbell River Storm.
The Braves were on a two man advantage as Storm players Ryan White and Gibson Doney were both serving penalties and the Braves capitalized as Chad Roorda sent a one timer on a Ty Jones pass and beat Storm goalie Nicholas Clark low blocker side to start the rally halfway through the first.
The third line, who played a gutsy, hard game every chance they got, scored a goal of their own as Sam Johnston made a backhanded pass to Josh McGladery who sent it in front of the net where rookie Seamus Maguire banged in his 3rd between the chest and arm of Clark for the final tally of the first. The Braves were stymied early on as they had troubles beating the stingy goaltender, but figured him out before long.
On the other end of the ice, Tanner McGaw looked sharp, although he only faced 6 shots, but made a couple of pretty saves, as he was the best penalty killer of the night.
On a controversial play, the Storm scored their loan goal through the first two periods, as Jordan Rauser took a snap shot from the point that was stopped by McGaw and fluttered in air for what seemed like forever and was eventually potted in by Jesse Spooner. The referees talked the play over but the play stood and the Storm split the lead in half.
The Storm absorbed almost all the momentum but couldn’t keep composure, as they took more penalties and the Braves scored once again as Chad Roorda made a short pass to Maguire for his second of the night, firing an absolute howitzer from the top right of the circle beating Clark and regaining the two goal lead.
Not much later, Ty Jones scored his league leading 27th as he one timed a Garrett Kemmler pass just a couple of feet away from the net top corner as the Braves lead 4-1 after 40. The Braves were leading on the scoreboard and had a wide margin on the shots as they stood at 27-16 after two.
With just seconds remaining in the second, Shawn McBride was denied as he went coast to coast on the power play and was just inches short of the goal of the year, but was denied by Clark. The Storm net minder was injured on the play and they had to bring in backup Jordan Salas for the final period.
Five minutes in, the Storm had two breakaways and McGaw stood tall on both and made a huge poke check to keep it at 4-1.
The Storm had no shortage of momentum and then capitalized for the second time on 27 tries as Josiah Friesen won a face-off straight back to Joel Smith, who pulled the trigger and let go a nice shot over the blocker hand of McGaw to once again cut the lead in half.
The third was all Campbell River, out-shooting the Braves 11-6, but couldn’t generate anything besides the Smith goal. Referee Steve Brown called nothing in the third besides a misconduct to Brandon Story near the end of the game.
Oh, and lets not forget a fancy goal by another rookie. Nick Guerra received a Roorda pass, streaked out wide then cut across the crease, pulled both hands in and shelved it passed Salas to put the game away.
The Braves were heavily outshot in the third, but ran a short bench only having 13 skaters, and also called up a backup goaltender as Saanich Midget A goalie Jason Stewart got the call for an absent Bowman Rutledge. Missing players tonight were Max Mois, Josh Gray, Jordan Groenheyde, Tom Dakers, Brandon Parmar & Nolan Kinney.
Tonight’s three stars were
1st – Seamus Maguire (2 goals)
2nd – Kurtis Coburn
3rd – Chad Roorda (3 assists)
But in my honest opinion, I’d definitely switch Coburn with McGaw who was the main piece for the win and stopped 25 out of 27.