The Nanaimo Clippers were able to string wins together for the first time this fall.
The Clips came back and beat the Coquitlam Express by a 4-2 score on Friday night at Frank Crane Arena. It’s the first back-to-back wins by the Shipmen early in the 2015-16 B.C. Hockey League season.
Nanaimo got down 2-0, but scored twice in the second period to tie the game and then Edwin Hookenson scored what stood up as the game-winning goal on a point shot early in the third period.
“It’s good to see that this early [in the season] we can come back,” Hookenson said. “It shows a lot about our team, I think.”
He said the team has confidence that its offence will score goals and that goaltender Jonathan Reinhart will make the comeback possible. That’s what happened Friday, and once the Clippers got the lead, they made it tough on the opposition.
“We were pretty stingy defensively,” Hookenson said. “We hardly gave them any shots after we took that lead, and not a lot of chances. So we really buckled down and we played our systems well in the D zone and even in the offensive zone, forechecked them hard and hardly let them get out of their end.”
The first two Clippers goals came on the power play, both in traffic close to the Express crease. Yanni Kaldis and then Matthew Hoover scored the goals.
“We worked hard to get to the inside and found some pucks around the net and go some screens and so on and so forth, and that’s what we were looking for,” said Mike Vandekamp, Clippers coach.
Sheldon Rempal’s insurance marker late in the third was the goal of the year so far. Devin Brosseau split the Express defence for a partial breakaway and although his stick was slashed out of his hands, he was able to kick the puck over to Rempal, who did the rest, deking out the goalie.
Brosseau ended up with two assists on the night and Hoover also tallied two points. Reinhart made 25 saves as shots ended up 46-27.
GAME ON … The Clippers play the Vernon Vipers on Saturday (Oct. 3) at 6 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena.
Nanaimo Clippers beat Coquitlam Express 4-2. Edwin Hookenson with the game-winning goal in the 3rd period… pic.twitter.com/mBafLclSC2
— Greg Sakaki (@BulletinSports) October 3, 2015