Back-to-back blowouts have lifted the Nanaimo Buccaneers into Round 2.
The Bucs defeated the Comox Valley Glacier Kings 7-1 on Thursday at the Nanaimo Ice Centre to win the best-of-seven series, four games to one. Nanaimo had won 6-0 in Comox in Game 4, and kept the pressure on in Game 5.
“We didn’t want to get too cocky or too confident, coming out here thinking it’s already our game,” said Jayden Schubert, Bucs forward.
Nanaimo scored four goals by the midway mark of the first period and was in control the rest of the night.
“We just tried to play our style – a hard forecheck, keep the puck in deep and get as many shots on the net as we can,” said Chad Bell, Buccaneers captain.
Dan Lemmon, Nanaimo coach, said his team got contributions from all lines and said that was a reason why the Bucs were able to take over what had started out as a closely contested series.
“We were able to roll and we were able to showcase our depth and our talent and I think we made some adjustments in the offensive zone that really helped us out,” Lemmon said.
Schubert and Bell scored two goals each and Brady Chin, Mateo Albinati and Trent Bell were Nanaimo’s other scorers. Cedric LeSieur got his first action of the post-season and made 19 saves for the victory.
Comox’s only goal came from Jackson Gibson. Zak Myrowich tended goal for the Yetis after No. 1 goalie Marcus Gloss was injured the previous game.
Lemmon said as the Buccaneers get ready to play the Campbell River Storm in Round 2, his team can feel good about the way it’s playing.
“It’s always nice when you can score some goals, guys get some confidence, but at the end of the day it was a good team win and I’m happy to move along,” the coach said.
Please look for a series preview on Monday at www.nanaimobulletin.com/sports.
GAME ON … The Bucs and Storm will play Game 1 on Tuesday (March 7) at 7:10 p.m. at Rod Brind’Amour Arena at Campbell River. Game 2 will be Thursday at 7:15 p.m. at the NIC.