January 21, 2013, Courtenay, BC (ISN) – The Yetis came out forechecking hard in the first period, creating multiple scoring opportunities. Neither team was able to capitalize on their chances, both net minders would remain perfect in the first forty minutes.
Comox Valley Glacier Kings (0) -v- Nanaimo Buccaneers (2) FINAL
Finally, at 5:28 of the third period, Buc’s forward Beau Blanaru would slide a puck past Hails, amongst confusion with the ‘Kings on the ice with Max Crawford down in the corner from taking a puck to the face. Crawford would not return to the game.
Despite the Glacier Kings throwing everything they could on net, nothing would break former Glacier Kings goalie Cam Large who would finish the game with a shutout.
The Buccaneers would add an empty net goal for a 2-0 final.
“Overall the boys played well, not every game that you out play [the opposition] you’re going to come out on top of the scoreboard. It’s a moral victory for us, we controlled what we could control and we feel confident in the team’s play going forward.” Assistant Coach Mark McNaughton.
The Glacier Kings outshot Nanaimo 36-24.
Nanaimo Buccaneers (1) -v- Comox Valley Glacier Kings (2) FINAL
The Glacier Kings would come out surprised by a hungry Nanaimo Buccaneers team. The Bucs would pounce on Glacier Kings lackluster effort by firing nine shots on net with the ‘Kings mustering only one. Due to a brilliant effort by goaltender Michael Hails the game would remain scoreless after one.
A re-energized Yetis squad would turn the tables in the second. The Buccaneers were met with aggressive Glacier King play that seemed to take away most of the Buc’s ability to make the clean plays that they were making earlier. A goal by local forward Jordan Crisp would break the deadlock at the beginning of the period. The Yeti’s play would not let up, not only creating scoring chances, but power play opportunities as well in which they would capitalize on after Andrew White faked a shot from the point sliding a hard pass through a seam to Rylan Ball who would one time the puck past goaltender Cam Large.
Despite the ‘Kings coming out strong, Nanaimo would narrow the lead early in the third period. Power play chances for the Bucs would give them the opportunity to even the game up; however, a committed penalty kill and strong play from Hails, including a six on four, during the last minute and seventeen seconds, would seal the win for the Icemen.
Assistant Coach, Cam Knox, was happy with the ‘Kings performance, “After a slow start to the game, the players had solid second and third periods, on the back of a strong game from goaltender Michael Hails. Games like these show a lot of character, and it shows the team’s compete factor when it comes to protecting their lead. This will prove huge in the playoffs.”
Goaltender Michael Hails was the star of the series recording a 1.00 GAA and a .963 save percentage over the two games. Special teams were a strong factor in favour of the Glacier Kings going 25% on the power play and a perfect 100% on the penalty kill over the two games.
Head Coach Bill Rotheisler, says close games are preparing the team for the post season, “These were tight games which is exactly what we have to prepare for going into the playoffs. Playoffs are almost always a test on who can win the most one goal games and whose special teams are more committed. I believe there is a strong foundation to continue to develop over the last ten games so we are prepared to go deep in the playoffs.”
The Icemen hit the road on Thursday to play the Victoria Cougars.