Hockey season is intensifying, and the Nanaimo Clippers will have to be ready.
The city’s B.C. Hockey League team plays a road game tonight (Nov. 2) against the Victoria Grizzlies, the second of five contests this week.
“This will be our busiest week that we’ve had so far so I hope we can just find the energy that’s required to compete the same way we did [on the weekend],” said Bill Bestwick, Clippers coach.
Nanaimo is playing with more than just a handful of injuries, but the schedule won’t wait.
“You don’t really have a choice when guys go down,” said Mike Domsodi, Clippers forward. “Other guys have to step up into their roles and do different stuff they’re not used to.”
He said keeping the game simple and working hard should lead to success. The Clips have been satisfied with their game-night efforts and forward Ryan Stanimir said it’s a reward for practising hard.
“If we keep working like we can, there’s no reason why we won’t win every game,” he said.
Tonight’s matchup at Bear Mountain Arena will pose a challenge, of course. The Clips and Grizz have played twice this season so far and Vic has won both times. It’s something that might not sit well with the ex-Grizzlies on the Shipmen: Todd Gebert, Graeme McCormack and Stanimir.
“It’s really easy to get up and motivated for those games, that’s for sure,” Stanimir said.
GAME ON … The Clippers and Grizzlies face off tonight (Nov. 2) at 7:15 p.m. at Bear Mountain Arena. Nanaimo then plays Thursday at Alberni Valley in a 7 p.m. tilt before hosting the Grizzlies and Powell River Kings on Friday and Saturday, respectively, at Frank Crane Arena … Recently injured Clippers include Leo Fitzgerald, Sam Labrecque and Kyle Kramer. Kramer is close to returning and Fitzgerald is day-to-day but Labrecque may be out until mid-month.