The Nanaimo Buccaneers weren’t able to start the playoffs the way they wanted.
The Bucs were beaten 3-2 in overtime by the Comox Valley Glacier Kings in Thursday’s Game 1 at the Nanaimo Ice Centre.
“I thought for our first game of the playoffs, it was a good game by us, it was just not enough to win today,” said Dan Lemmon, Buccaneers coach.
The home team got a game-tying goal by Dawson Heathcote with two minutes left to force overtime, but Comox scored the game-winner as Cody Shepheard tallied about halfway through the 10-minute OT period.
Nanaimo had a 44-35 edge in shots in the game and a couple of clear-cut breakaways in the third period, but had trouble getting pucks past Comox goalie Marcus Gloss.
“I thought we had the majority of possession and opportunities to score. Obviously they’ve got great goaltending,” Lemmon said. “We made a couple simple mistakes. When you look at the overtime goal, we never go through the middle of the ice with the puck. We didn’t go glass and out.”
Chad Bell scored Nanaimo’s first goal and John Hawthorne suffered the loss in goal. Comox’s scorers in regulation were Brayden Durante and Jackson Gibson.
Lemmon said his team will take the experience of Game 1 into Game 2.
“I think we’ve got a little bit more in the tank and I think we’ll start seeing a little bit more calmness on the ice,” the coach said.
GAME ON … Game 2 is Saturday (Feb. 25) at 7:50 p.m. at the Comox Valley Sportsplex. Game 3 is back at the NIC on Monday at 7 p.m.