The Langley Rivermen closed out an island road trip with a victory — and one extra night — in Nanaimo.
The Rivermen doubled up the host Nanaimo Clippers 4-2 on Sunday afternoon, but instead of catching a ferry back to the mainland, the team spent the night in Nanaimo after a severe storm cancelled all ferries.
It was the junior A hockey club’s only victory in three tries as they dropped a 4-2 decision on Friday night in Powell River to the Kings and then lost 4-3 the next night in Port Alberni to the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.
“We played decent Friday night (but) Saturday it was a struggle,” said coach Bobby Henderson.
“We just couldn’t get anything going.
“But on Sunday, we regrouped and got it done.”
Saturday turned out to be a longer travel day than expected as the team missed their 8 a.m. ferry that morning from Powell River to Comox. And after the 12 p.m. ferry was cancelled because of weather, they had to drive down the Sunshine Coast to Horseshoe Bay to catch the ferry to Nanaimo and then drive to Port Alberni.
The results leave Langley with a 4-3-0-1 record and nine points — and just two points back of the Mainland Division lead — as the BCHL season kicks into the second month.
Rivermen 4 Clippers 2
Against the Clippers, Langley fell behind 1-0 early in the game on a power play goal from Bo Brauer before Austin Azurdia and Matt Ustaski put the Rivermen ahead for good.
Kevan Kilistoff made it 3-1 in the second and Will Cook scored for the 4-1 lead midway through the third. Colton Dahlen made it a two-goal game with six minutes to go, but that would be it for the scoring.
Goaltender Steve Myland made 15 saves as the Rivermen outshot the hosts 31-17.
Bulldogs 4 Rivermen 3
James Robinson returned to the line-up from suspension and netted a pair of goals but that was not enough as Langley lost 4-3 to Alberni Valley.
Robinson had opened the scoring before Mitch Makin, Luca Doctor and Ryan Buse pulled the Bulldogs ahead 3-1 early in the second. Robinson then pulled the visitors within a goal with a short-handed marker but Makin scored his second on a power play late in the period.
Jakob Reichert had the only goal of the third, a power-play score which made it 4-3.
Kings 4 Rivermen 2
After a scoreless opening period, Powell River’s Jarid Lukosevicius and Azurdia traded goals 64 seconds apart. And prior to the second intermission, the Kings received goals from Kurt Keats and Stephen Hiff to take the lead for good.
Ryan Scarfo made it 4-1 before Azurdia scored his second of the night for the 4-2 final score.
The Rivermen are in for another busy weekend, albeit with less travel this time around.
The team will again play three games in three days, beginning with a home-and-home series versus the Surrey Eagles.
The teams play at South Surrey Arena on Friday (Oct. 4) before the return match at the Langley Events Centre on Saturday (Oct. 5) at 7:15 p.m.
They wrap up the weekend with a Sunday matinee at the LEC against the Alberni Valley Bulldogs at 2 p.m.