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VIDEO: Double-overtime goal keeps Clippers unbeaten in pre-season

Nanaimo Clippers edge the Victoria Grizzlies by a 2-1 score on Wednesday at Frank Crane Arena
Nanaimo Clippers forward Vincent Millette gets a scoring chance in front of Victoria Grizzlies goaltender Shawn Parkinson as Grizz defencemen Drayson Pears and Nico Somerville close in during Wednesday’s BCHL exhibition game at Nanaimo’s Frank Crane Arena. (GREG SAKAKI/The News Bulletin)

The Nanaimo Clippers needed double overtime to do it, but they were able to remain undefeated so far in BCHL exibition play.

The city’s junior A hockey team edged the Victoria Grizzlies by a 2-1 score on Wednesday at Frank Crane Arena thanks to Tristan Crozier’s game-winning goal. Jake Harris also scored and Noah Featherstonhaugh Gowe and Conor Klaers shared the win in net.

Mike Vandekamp, Clippers coach, said it was a pretty good game and said his team seemed to play better as the game went on. The guys did what they were asked to do, he said.

“We’re introducing a lot of team structure and yet we don’t want to overload the guys and have them out there thinking too much and not playing,” he said. “So I think that’s what we’re trying to find a balance in right now is trying to play with some spirit and play with some energy and try to get smarter from one game to the next.”

The Clippers didn’t have a lot of guys in training camp this year and are close to cutting down their roster numbers. They have 24 players on the roster and need to get to 23, though they are also one under-age player below the league minimum.

“So we either have to find that guy or play a roster spot short until we do find one,” said Vandekamp, who is also general manager of the Clippers. “We still have a little bit of movement to make over the weekend, for sure. There’s still some tweaks with lineups.”

The current group is doing a lot of things right, the coach said, so the Clippers will have a strong opening day lineup, whatever it ends up looking like.

“We like what the guys have been doing,” said Vandekamp. “They’ve been working hard, they’ve had a good spirit and a good attitude about them since the first meeting, so we’re pretty happy with that.”

GAME ON … The Clippers play another home exhibition Friday (Sept. 1) when they host the Cowichan Valley Capitals at 7 p.m. at Frank Crane Arena. The Clips then visit the Grizzlies on Saturday. The regular season starts Sept. 8.

About the Author: Greg Sakaki

I have been in the community newspaper business for two decades, all of those years with Black Press Media.
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