VIU Mariners player Alex Milligan shoots and scores during the shootout as his team defeated the Selkirk Saints 5-4 on Saturday at the Nanaimo Ice Centre. GREG SAKAKI/The News Bulletin

VIU Mariners player Alex Milligan shoots and scores during the shootout as his team defeated the Selkirk Saints 5-4 on Saturday at the Nanaimo Ice Centre. GREG SAKAKI/The News Bulletin

VIU Mariners come back to beat Saints in shootout

Hockey team jostling for home-ice advantage in the playoffs

The VIU Mariners needed a shootout, but they were able to secure a win and one extra point that’s important to their playoff positioning.

Vancouver Island University defeated the Selkirk Saints 5-4 in a shootout Saturday in B.C. Intercollegiate Hockey League action at the Nanaimo Ice Centre.

The Saints led 3-1, but the Mariners twice tied it up and were able to beat their closest pursuers in the BCIHL standings.

“It’s all about battling and coming back. These guys were showing lots of heart,” said Steve Paul, coach of the Mariners. “To pull it off and get the two points was huge for this club tonight.”

The Mariners fired 55 shots on goal, and stuck with it until the pucks went in.

“It was all about traffic, getting pucks to the net and making it difficult for [their goaltender],” said Paul.

Alex Milligan scored the winning goal in the shootout and said even when the Mariners were trailing, they tried to stick with playing their game.

“I think you have to. You can’t really stray and get too far away from what you’re doing to make yourself successful and the team successful,” he said. “I think we played a really good game. We were getting pucks deep and just putting everything on net.”

Milligan said his team knew Saturday’s game would be a challenging one.

“They capitalized on their chances and we knew they would,” he said. “I think it shows a lot that our team’s got a lot of determination being down 3-1 … and coming back, and those are big points. We’re fighting with them for home ice for playoffs, so every point is crucial, especially at this time of year.”

Paul said players understand the importance of home-ice advantage in the playoffs, so now they’ve got to go earn it.

“We’re not perfect by any means for the playoffs, we’ve got to work a little bit harder, practise a little bit harder…” he said. “[They] need a little push here and there and a kick in the shorts.”

Garrett Murray led VIU with two goals Saturday and Dylan McCann and Gage Colpron were other scorers. Matt Huber made 22 saves and was perfect in five rounds of the shootout.

GAME ON … Next action for the VIU Mariners is Feb. 2, when they host SFU at 7:15 p.m. at the Nanaimo Ice Centre.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cash and drugs allegedly found in a suspect’s possession following an arrest earlier this month in downtown Nanaimo. (Photo submitted)
Accused drug dealer arrested in downtown Nanaimo carrying $20,000, fentanyl, crack and meth

Terrance Virus, 39, being held in custody, scheduled to appear in court Feb. 1

Letter writers weigh in on Nanaimo’s animal responsibility bylaw that will control roaming cats. (Stock photo)
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Bylaw will lead to cat abandonment

Letter writer foresees SPCA and pound will be overrun with cats that can’t be trained to a leash

Rick Morgan, Nanaimo Search and Rescue building director, and Carly Trobridge, president and search manager, turn sod to kick off the start of renovations to NSAR’s headquarters Tuesday, Jan. 26. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo Search and Rescue getting started on $2.6-million makeover at Harewood headquarters

Renovation project will increase space for vehicles and improve training and management operations

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: Vancouver Island in a January spike while B.C. cases decrease

Island’s top doc Dr. Stanwick breaks down the Island’s rising numbers

A downed power line has sparked a brush fire along Yellow Point Road south of Nanaimo. (Cole Schisler/Black Press)
Downed hydro line sparks brush fire in Yellow Point

North Oyster firefighters and B.C. Hydro on scene along Yellow Point Road

The Pachena Bay shoreline in 2013. (Twitter/Ateachersaurus)
This week in history: 9.0 magnitude quake struck under what is now called Vancouver Island

According to First Nations elders, the 9.0-magnitude quake in 1700 CE kick-started a tsunami

Extensive water on No. 4 and 5 at the Mount Brenton Golf Course following heavy rains earlier this month. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Island golf course does a booming business in 2020

A total of 15,000 more rounds played than the previous year at Mount Brenton

SAR crews worked late into the night Tuesday to rescue an injured snowboarder in North Vancouver. (Facebook/North Shore Rescue)
Complicated, dangerous rescue saves man in avalanche near Cypress Mountain

North Shore SAR team braves considerable conditions to reach injured snowboarder

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
UPDATE: No sign of small plane that went down in waters south of Vancouver Island

Searchers out on both sides of border between Victoria and Port Angeles

A tip from the public helped Victoria police located and arrest wanted men Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Tips lead police to arrest convicted killer, robber near downtown Victoria

Two men were at large after failing to return to community facility

The Pacific Rim Whale Festival is breaching for a COVID-safe return in March. (Poster photo by Owen Crosby)
Pacific Rim Whale Festival aims for virtual return in March

Educational celebration scheduled to arrive in Tofino-Ucluelet on March 15.

In this undated image made from a video taken by the Duke of Sussex and posted on @SaveChildrenUK by the Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, shows the Duchess of Sussex reading the book “Duck! Rabbit!” to their son Archie who celebrates his first birthday on Wednesday May 6, 2020. The Canadian Paediatric Society is reminding families that the process of raising a reader starts from birth. (Duke of Sussex/@SaveChildrenUK)
Canadian Paediatric Society says raising a reader starts from birth

CPS says literacy is one of the strongest predictors of lifelong health outcomes

Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion Minister Carla Qualtrough responds to a question during a news conference Thursday August 20, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Easing rules for parental benefits created inequities among parents, documents say

Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough’s office says the government will make any necessary changes

People walk along a pedestrianized zone of Sainte-Catherine street in Montreal, Monday, May 18, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. Newly released statistics point to a major drop in police-recorded crime during the first eight months of the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Crime down in first 8 months of pandemic, but mental health calls rise: StatCan

The agency says violent crimes such as assault dropped significantly

Most Read