The Summerland Steam improved to 4-1-0 in the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League with a 5-3 win over the North Okanagan Knights Sunday.
Paulsen Lautard’s second goal of the game was the winner in the Nor-Val Centre in Armstrong as he and his linemates Braden Eliuk and Jack Mills combined for nine points. Mills led the way with a goal and four points.
“It was good their line played like I know they are capable of playing,” said Summerland Steam coach John DePourcq. “They had plenty of other chances to score as well. Great game by them.”
The Steam opened the scoring in the first on a short-handed tally by Riley Pettitt at 7:49. Two minutes later Eliuk and Mills set up Cole Williams to give the Steam a 2-0 lead heading into the first intermission. In the middle frame, the Knights used a power-play goal by Austin Fournier to make it 2-1 then beat Austin Wells for the equalizer less than a minute later. Seven minutes after that goal, Lautard scored his first. After Fournier scored again to make it 4-3 on the power-play midway through the third, Mills scored on the power-play to secure the win.
“We played a great game. We had plenty of opportunities,” said DePourcq.
In what was a gritty performance for the Steam, the only thing DePourcq didn’t like were the poorly timed penalties in the offensive zone. The Steam found themselves down two-men in the final four minutes.
“We have to understand, we don’t want to be biting our nails, and I don’t want to get anymore grey hair,” said DePourcq. “It is important that they understand how we need to play and if kids want to play in certain situations, they have to understand those things. It’s nice when we can still win, yet learn from some valuable things that happen on the ice late in the game.
Wells finished with 25 saves. The Steam’s next two games are against the Knights, in Armstrong on Oct. 2 then at the Summerland Arena on Oct. 4 at 2 p.m.
Soles help Coyotes blank former team
Osoyoos Coyotes goalie Brett Soles stoned his former team, the Nelson Leafs, by stopping 30 shots in a 4-0 victory at the Osoyoos Sun Bowl on Sept. 26.
“I think he had a little extra motivation,” said Coyotes general manager and coach Ken Law, who acquired Soles last season in a trade.
Ryan Morrell scored a pair, while Bobby LaRue and Daniel Stone rounded out the scoring for the Coyotes. LaRue buried the winner past Joseph Barton with 6:21 remaining in the first period and had a 2-0 lead after two. Barton turned aside 37 shots.
“I just thought our depth got to them. We have four lines that were all playing well. We didn’t have to match lines at all. We could just roll them.”
Law added that Soles made the saves he needed to and his defence didn’t allow the Leafs to get second and third chances.
“We were pretty good in our own zone,” he said.
The Coyotes next game is Wednesday in Princeton when they take on the Posse (4-2-0, including one overtime win) at the Princeton and District Arena.