Story and Photos by Christian J. Stewart (ISN)
December 18, 2014, Saanich, BC (ISN) – Evan Horvath had a goal and an assist to lead the Saanich Braves to a 3-1 win over the Kerry Park Islanders in Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League action last Wednesday night (Dec. 17) at Pearkes Arena in Saanich.
Saanich’s Evan Horvath had an assist and a third period insurance goal to help the Braves to a 3-1 win over Kerry Park on Wednesday (File Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
The win snapped a six game losing streak for the Braves and was just their second win in the last 13 games. More importantly though, the win snapped a streak of five games where the Braves had allowed three or more third period goals that turned close games into losses.
That was far from the case on Wednesday, as the Braves took a 2-1 lead into the third period thanks to second period goals from Alex Schleuter, his fifth of the season on the power play, and Jordan Parmar, his fourth. Zack Smith had replied for the Islanders shorthanded, also in the second.
In the third, it would be the Braves who would be the only team to score, as Horvath would net the insurance goal, again on the power play, just 1:18 into the period. Schlueter earned an assist on the play to also finish with a two-point evening for the Braves.
Saanich’s Alex Schleuter scored the Braves first goal of the evening and added an assist to have a 2 point evening (File Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
After that, the Saanich defence and goaltender Riley Mathieson, making his third start as a Brave, ensured there would be no collapse this time, keeping all 12 Kerry Park shots out of the net and preserving the 3-1 win. Mathieson, who allowed six goals in each of his previous two starts, was solid on Wednesday, stopping 31 of 32 Islander shots to earn his first win as a Brave and sixth win of the season.
The win improves the Braves record to 9-19-0-5 and puts them eight points up on Peninsula for fourth place in the South Division. It also moves the Braves back to within seven points of the Islanders for third.
Saanich will have one more chance before Christmas to improve on that record, as they will host the Peninsula Panthers on Friday night at Pearkes Arena in Saanich in a 6:30 start. They are then off until New Years Day, where they face a return engagement with the Panthers, this time at Panorama Arena in a 6:00 pm start.