After coming out of the Thanksgiving weekend without a win, the Nanaimo Buccaneers were ecstatic to get four points from their home-and-home weekend with the Campbell River Storm. The Buccaneers had a 5–2 win on Oct. 11 and followed up with their second win in as many with 6–1 victory.
The Buc’s home game began slowly and looking like Nanaimo was in for a tough game. The Storm opened the scoring at 9:56 of the first period when Jon Brumwell beat Cameron Large for a 1–0 lead, which they held onto until Jake Kaese scored an unassisted goal tying the game 1–1, less than one minute into the period. At 15:13, Campbell River’s Scott Salberg and Nanaimo’s Jake Calverley dropped the mitts, both receiving a five minute penalty and a game misconduct. Minutes later, forward Tyson Rennie regained the lead for the Storm. Both teams fought hard, and at 4:35 Will McNamara scored to tie the game once again.
The third period was all black and yellow, as the Buccaneers scored three goals to give them a 5–2 lead. The final 20 minutes were also a constant parade to the penalty box, especially for Campbell River who took six minor penalties and one 10 minute misconduct. This resulted in the Storm playing most of the period shorthanded—and any hockey fan knows it is hard to win a game playing shorthanded. The Buccaneers took three minor penalties in the period but were able to keep their composure and capitalize on the Storm’s undisciplined ways. Lynden Eddy and Jordan Levesque added to the scoreboard for the Buc’s, both on the power play. Nanaimo outshot Campbell River 40–26 and proved that hard work and discipline is the best way to win a hockey game.
The Buccaneers travelled to Campbell River on Oct. 12 knowing they were able to beat this tough Storm team, but also knowing the Storm was looking to settle a battle they had lost just 24 hours earlier. Nanaimo came out and Nick White opened the scoring for the Buccaneers at 13:38 of the first period. Levesque followed up with a power play goal at 4:23, giving the Bucs’ a two-goal cushion. Nanaimo continued to pressure the Storm, resulting in more undisciplined hockey from their hosts. Derian Hamilton tallied on the power less than a minute into the second period and Garrett Dunlop netted Nanaimo’s fourth goal at 4:30. Campbell River took a total of eight penalties in the period.
Tyson Rennie got Campbell River on the board at 16:36 of the third, but Beau Blanaru scored for Nanaimo with just 4:12, and Garrett Dunlop scored his second goal of the game one minute later. The Buccaneers held on to win 6–1, capitalizing on Campbell River’s second night of penalty-riddled play.
The following weekend the Buccaneers lost both of their games—a 4–2 home loss to Penninsula on Oct. 18 followed by a 6–1 loss in Comox two nights later.
The Nanaimo Clippers had a busy two weeks following the Thanksgiving long weekend. They started out with a two day home-and-home challenge with the Alberni Valley Bulldogs, who beat the Clippers 7–2 in Nanaimo on Oct. 12. After getting pummeled at home, the Clippers took on the Bulldogs in Port Alberni the following night, and proved they were a hard-working team. Nanaimo scored the only goal of the first period at 6:57 when Reid Sturos tallied on the power play. Nanaimo took a commanding lead of the second period early when Greg Fraser scored a shorthanded goal. Michael McNicholas, Sturos, and Mason Mitchell also scored for the Clippers and they returned to Nanaimo with a 5–0 win.
On Sun., Oct. 14, the Clippers took on the defending champions, Penticton Vees. Coming off a big win the night before, the Clippers were fired up and ready for the challenge. Trevor Fitzgerald opened the scoring at 10:50 of the first period, giving the Clippers a 1–0 lead. Seven minutes later Penticton’s Michael Rebry scored to tie the game at one a piece. Kevin Miller then scored on the power play goal, giving the Clippers a 2–1 lead. Alex Jeweek from Penticton tied the game for a second time at 13:50 of the third period, but David Iacono scored shortly after on the power play to give Nanaimo a 3–2 lead. Greg Trichilo netted an empty net goal to secure Nanaimo’s 4–2 lead for the win.
Fans can watch the Clippers’ next home game Fri., Nov. 9 against the Cowichan Valley Capitals at Frank Crane arena. The Buccaneers will host the Comox Valley Glacier Kings one night earlier on Thurs., Nov. 8 at the Nanaimo Ice Centre.