Clippers handle Bulldogs
The Nanaimo Clippers bested a divisional foe, and will now try to build on the win.
The city's B.C. Hockey League team defeated the Alberni Valley Bulldogs by a 3-1 score on Wednesday night at Frank Crane Arena.
Nanaimo got two goals in a two-minute span late in the first period from Trevor Fitzgerald and Kyle Kramer and goalie Derek Dun calmly kept the Bulldogs from getting back in the game.
Alberni outshot Nanaimo by a 42-36 margin but Clippers players made sure that the majority of those shots were from the outside.
"After that, we lifted sticks, took the body and minimized the [scoring chances] that they got," said Mason Mitchell, Clippers forward.
The Bulldogs made it 2-1 midway through the second period on a tipped point shot, but less than two minutes later Mitchell restored his team's two-goal margin when he got free on a breakaway and put the puck, the opposing goalie and himself in the net.
Coach Mike Vandekamp said his players were responsible in their own end but at the other end of the ice, on the forecheck, they were perhaps not as aggressive as he would have liked.
"I thought we sat back a little bit more than we wanted to which allowed [the Bulldogs] to mount a little bit of an attack," he said.
Still, the win had the Clippers talking about momentum and confidence as they play two more home games this coming weekend.
"There's lots of things we can address, and play better…" Vandekamp said. "And I think we will."
GAME ON … The Clippers host the Trail Smoke Eaters on Friday (Jan. 25) at 7 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena, then host the Merritt Centennials on Sunday at 3 p.m. at Frank Crane … For more on those games, check back at Clippers Central on Friday morning … For profiles of the Clippers players and coaches, please click here.