Clips, Caps clash at top of standings

The Nanaimo Clippers and Cowichan Capitals could be playing for first place on Friday (Nov. 18) at Frank Crane Arena.

Nanaimo Clippers forward Trevor Fitzgerald

Nanaimo Clippers forward Trevor Fitzgerald

It’s always lively when the Nanaimo Clippers take on the Cowichan Valley Capitals. It’s even better when there’s something on the line.

Depending on results of the B.C. Hockey League’s Thursday games, the Clips and Caps could be playing for first place on Friday (Nov. 18) at Frank Crane Arena.

“We know that we’re going to be in for a battle; they’re playing well right now,” said Andrew Gladiuk, Clippers alternate captain. “But everything’s so tight that we’ve got to get up for all our games right now. Points are crucial.”

Gladiuk said he doesn’t think it takes a different mindset to play against a first-placed team. Clippers goalie Billy Faust said the same thing, adding that he doesn’t even look at the standings.

“When we’re preparing for games, we treat it like every other game and that’s how it should be, because no team in this conference is more special than any other team,” he said.

“It’s extremely close and any team can beat any other team on any given day,” Billy Faust said.

For the Clippers to win the day on Friday, the flow of traffic in front of the creases will be key. The Clips’ goalie said the Capitals battle hard in front of the net, so he’ll be counting on his teammates to clear guys out of that area and keep the action in front of the Caps crease, instead.

Home-ice advantage could be another storyline. Friday’s game is the second of three straight at Frank Crane Arena, where the Clippers want to start stringing wins together.

“We want teams to fear coming into Nanaimo, so we’ve got to get some wins here and be really focused to get our home record up and make it a tough place to play,” said Andrew Gladiuk.

GAME ON … The Clippers and Capitals are scheduled to face off at 7 p.m. Friday (Nov. 18) at Frank Crane.  The Clips then host the Coquitlam Express on Sunday at 3 p.m. at Frank Crane … The Clippers are coming off a 2-0 shutout Wednesday of the Powell River Kings. To read about that game, please click here.

sports@nanaimobulletin.com