The Victoria Cougars (5-1-0-1) host the league-leading Campbell River Storm (8-1-0-0) this afternoon.
Game time at the Archie Browning Sports Centre, located at 1151 Esquimalt Road, is 3:30 p.m.
Purchase five dollars’ worth of 50/50 tickets and get admitted to this afternoon’s game for only five dollars.
This afternoon’s game marks the second of four meetings between these two teams. Back on September 9, Campbell River blanked the Cougars 3-0.
It was tense and close until Brady Chin and Reid Wheeldon iced the game with late third period goals to help the hometown Storm pull away and secure the victory.
Chris Smith, who was acquired from the Westshore Wolves in exchange for defenseman Joe Gage last May, stopped all 14 shots for first shutout since January 21, 2015.
After two full seasons of stagnation in Westshore, the trade to Campbell River has rejuvenated Smith’s career. Now under the tutelage of goaltending coach Andy Seppanen and head coach Lee Stone, Smith leads all VIJHL netminders with six wins, a 1.00 goals against average, and a .953 save percentage.
The Storm stretched its win streak to six games with a 5-1 win over the Oceanside Generals last night.
Christian Brandt scored twice while Reid Wilson, Will Warm, and Wheeldon each added singles for Campbell River which opened a three-game road trip in style.
17-year-old goaltender Zak Myrowich, an up-and-comer, stopped 18 shots for his second win of the season.
Dom Kolbeins will face his former team this afternoon. After scoring 36 goals and adding 47 assists for the Cougars last season, Kolbeins was dealt to the Storm in exchange for future considerations less than two weeks ago.
There is not much breathing room for first place in the South Island Division. Victoria sits only three points back of the division-leading Saanich Braves with three games in hand.
After a rough start to the season, the Cougars have rattled off wins over the Kerry Park Islanders, Saanich, and most recently the Peninsula Panthers.
On Friday, Tyler Vanuden scored twice while Nick Gomerich, Owen Dalman, Kenny Britton, James Scott, and Grayden Hohl each added singles to lead Victoria past the Panthers 7-4.
It was the biggest offensive output of the season for the Cougars which went into Friday averaging a woeful 2.7 goals for per game.
The score was tied 1-1 before Victoria took a 5-3 lead into the third period.
Justin Anderson turned aside 19 shots as he got the start in net for the Cougars.
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STANDINGS: Victoria – 2nd place, 11 points, South Island Division. Campbell River – 1st place, 16 points, North Island Division
OFFENSE: Victoria – 5th place, 3.29 goals for per game. Campbell River – 1st place, 4.56 goals for per game
DEFENSE: Victoria – 2nd place, 2.43 goals against per game. Campbell River – 1st place, 1.78 goals against per game
TEAM LEADERS: Victoria – Nick Gomerich, Owen Dalman, 4 goals; Grayden Hohl, Avery Hill, 6 assists; Nick Gomerich, Grayden Hohl, 9 points; Kenny Britton, 31 penalty minutes. Campbell River – Colin Blake, Kobe Oishi, Christian Brandt, 5 goals; Colin Blake, 9 assists; Colin Blake, 14 points; Aiden Blake-Smith, 21 penalty minutes
GOALTENDERS: Victoria – Anthony Ciurro (2.14 goals against average, .927 save percentage); Justin Anderson (2.50 goals against average, .898 save percentage). Campbell River – Chris Smith (1.00 goals against average, .953 save percentage); Zak Myrowich (1.82 goals against average, .917 save percentage)
POWER PLAY: Victoria – 1st place, 8-for-27, 29.63 percent. Campbell River – 3rd place, 9-for-40, 22.50 percent
PENALTY KILL: Victoria – 4th place, 35-for-41, 85.37 percent. Campbell River – 3rd place, 27-for-31, 87.10 percent
SEASON SERIES: Campbell River leads series, 1-0-0-0
PAST RESULTS/FUTURE MEETINGS:
September 9, 2016. Victoria Cougars 0 @ Campbell River Storm 3
December 11, 2016. Campbell River Storm @ Victoria Cougars
February 17, 2017. Victoria Cougars @ Campbell River Storm
HOME/AWAY RECORDS: Victoria – Home, 3-0-0-0. Campbell River – Away, 2-0-0-0
STREAKS: Victoria, 3-0-0-0. Campbell River, 6-0-0-0
LAST TEN: Victoria, 5-1-0-1. Campbell River, 8-1-0-0