The Nanaimo Clippers regained their edge in the race to the BCHL finals.
The Clippers defeated the Chilliwack Chiefs 3-2 on Monday night in the Fraser Valley after Yanni Kaldis scored a game-winning goal with 45 seconds to go in the third period.
Chris Dodero opened the scoring on a second-period power play, whacking a rebound overtop of Chiefs goalie Aidan Pelino.
The third period was back and forth, with Darien Craighead tallying for Chilliwack, Matt Hoover one-timing in a go-ahead goal, and then Vimal Sukumaran tying the game again seven minutes into the frame. The game remained tied until late, when Kaldis received a pass, stepped into the slot and fired a wrister into the back of the net.
Evan Johnson, who made 39 saves, was chosen first star as shots were 41-27 in favour of the home team.
The Clippers (2-1) are now closest to reaching the requisite three wins to advance to the B.C. Hockey League final. The West Kelowna Warriors (1-1) and the Chiefs (1-2) meet Wednesday (April 6) in the Okanagan.
GAME ON … The Clips face the Warriors on Friday at 7 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena. For tickets, please call 250-751-0593 or visit www.nanaimoclippers.com.
-with files from Eric J. Welsh