The Comox Valley Glacier Kings got their Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League playoffs off to an impressive start Tuesday, defeating the Saanich Braves 4-1.
After giving up the first goal of the game, the Yetis fired four unanswered goals to take a 1-0 lead in their best-of-seven series with the Braves. Dallas Maxwell earned first-star honours for his two-goal performance while second star Eric Margo and third star Grant Iles added one each. Liam Shaw chipped in with a pair of assists.
Blake Pearson picked up the win as the Icemen out-shot the Braves 29-17. Both teams were 0-for-5 on the power play. The game was scoreless after one period, then the Glacier Kings went on the attack in the second stanza, firing 17 shots at Jason Stewart en route to grabbing a 3-1 lead.
Jake Daughtry netted Saanich’s only goal at 8:24 of the second period. Margo got that one back at the 16:56 mark, then Maxwell at 16:56 and Iles at 17:27 gave the G-Kings some breathing room. Maxwell’s second of the game at 8:52 of the third put things out of reach for the visitors.
Tuesday night’s tilt at the Comox Valley Sports Centre between the North Division champion Glacier Kings and South Division cellar dwelling Saanich launched the VIJHL post-season. The other North Island series with N2 Campbell River and N3 Nanaimo Buccaneers got underway Wednesday.
The other first-round series pit S1 Victoria Cougars against S4 Kerry Park Islanders and S2 Peninsula Panthers against S3 Westshore Wolves. All series are best-of-seven.
Game two in the Comox Valley vs. Saanich series goes Thursday, Feb. 20 in Saanich with Game 3 on Saturday, Feb. 22 in Courtenay (7:30 p.m.) and Game 4 in Saanich on Monday, Feb. 24.
If needed, Game 5 would be Feb. 25 in Courtenay (7:45 p.m.), Game 6 in Saanich Feb. 27 and Game 7 in Courtenay Feb. 28 (7:30 p.m.).
ICE CHIPS The VIJHL’s Bob Saunders Leadership award (which goes to a player from each team) for the Oceanside Generals went to Travis Flug … the balance of league awards will be presented at home games during the first round of the playoffs … in the Feb. 16 rankings of B.C. Jr. B hockey teams (based on winning percentage) the Glacier Kings (31-14-1-2 .677) were tied for eighth …. the Cougars (35-10-1-2 .760) were the top VIJHL team, checking in at sixth …