The Nanaimo Buccaneers clamped down on the high-scoring Westshore Wolves and took over first place in the league.
The Bucs doubled up the Wolves 4-2 on Thursday night at the Nanaimo Ice Centre to pass two teams in the standings and reach top spot in the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League.
“I thought it was our best win of the season in regards to playing a full 60,” said Derek Bachynski, Bucs coach. “A good team buy-in. I thought our D zone coverage and limiting their chances was the best that I’ve seen all year.”
The Wolves, expansion cousins of the Buccaneers, came into Thursday’s tilt averaging more than five goals a game.
“We know that they have a lot of skill in their forward lineup, so … we were just really trying to take away their time and space,” said Jake Calverley, Bucs captain.
Will McNamara led Nanaimo’s offence with two goals and an assist, Trent Bell and Nolan Richardson had one goal each and Jordan Levesque dished three assists. Liam Young was the winning goalie as shots were 28-24 for Nanaimo.
To hang on to first place in the North Division, the Buccaneers (8-1-0-1) will need a good result tomorrow (Oct. 3) as they visit the undefeated Campbell River Storm (8-0-0-0).
“We want to outwork them, bang bodies, get shots on net,” Calverley said. “It’s tough to play in Campbell River’s rink, it always is, everyone knows that, but we’ve just got to play together as a team and do the little things.”
GAME ON … The Bucs and Storm play Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Rod Brind’Amour Arena. The next home game for the Buccaneers is Thursday (Oct. 9) against the Victoria Cougars at 7:15 p.m. at the NIC.
— Greg Sakaki (@BulletinSports) October 3, 2014