Injury-riddled team playing hard

Nanaimo Clippers goalie Charles-Andre Pelletier makes a save on Powell River Kings opponent Chad Niddery during Saturday's B.C. Hockey League game at Frank Crane Arena. The Clips were shut out 4-0.

The injury-riddled Nanaimo Clippers were able to earn two big points, but weren’t able to keep up with the conference’s best team.

Nanaimo’s B.C. Hockey League team defeated the Victoria Grizzlies 7-4 on Friday before running out of steam in a 4-0 loss Saturday to the Powell River Kings.

In Saturday’s game at Frank Crane Arena, the Clips had 10 players listed as injury scratches.

“To win games when your roster is depleted, somebody has to have the game of a lifetime to give you a chance to win, and it’s hard to get that,” said Bill Bestwick, Clippers coach.

After the game he offered “full compliments” to all the players, especially considering that it was their fifth game in seven days. The Clips allowed two first-period goals to the Kings, but kept the game close until the Kings added an insurance goal midway through the third.

Final shots ended up 31-29 for Nanaimo, with Charles-Andre Pelletier suffering the loss in net.

“With any luck at all, maybe we could have scored a goal somewhere along the line there and made it a 2-1 game, but all in all there’s not really a lot to be disappointed about,” Bestwick said. “That’s the top team in our division and we played pretty hard given our roster.”

Powell River Kings goalie Sean Maguire, who posted the shutout, said his team was aware that the Clippers would be tired and tried to force the issue early.

“Part of it was just coming out hard,” Maguire said. “They weren’t ready for those two goals at the beginning of the game.”

Nick Bell, Clippers alternate captain, was satisfied with the effort.

“We definitely competed hard; the biggest thing was we didn’t compete smart, though,” said Bell. “A couple errors in the first, a couple errors in the third kind of cost us. We were in the game but we kind of let it slip away.”

He said the Clippers aren’t about to start making excuses. Every team goes through injuries, he said, and every team plays three games in four nights. The Shipmen are tired, he said, but plan to be ready for the next game Wednesday (Nov. 10) at Coquitlam.

“First of all we’ve just got to recover physically. Hopefully some of the injured guys will be back Wednesday,” he said. “We’ll recharge, get our minds back in it and we’ll be good.”

ICE CHIPS … On Friday the Clippers defeated the Victoria Grizzlies 7-4 at Frank Crane Arena. Ryan Stanimir and Zach Martin each had two goals and an assist and other Nanaimo goal scorers were Colton Cyr, Andrew Gladiuk, and Todd Gebert with his first career BCHL marker. Pelletier was the goalie of record in the win as he shared playing time with Charles-Alexy Premont. Shots in that game were 34-27 for the Grizz … The Nanaimo Clippers and the Coquitlam Express face off at 7 p.m. Wednesday (Nov. 10) on the mainland. The Clips then face the Surrey Eagles on Thursday in a Remembrance Day matinee before returning home to host the Grizzlies on Friday in a 7:10 p.m. start at Frank Crane Arena … Forward Brett Hartskamp will return to the lineup on Wednesday and defenceman Kiefer McNaughton is listed as possible.

sports@nanaimobulletin.com

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