(Photo Courtesy: Vicki Brown)
WEST KELOWNA – On a night they rebranded as the Peachland Warriors, paying tribute to the District of Peachland approximately eight minutes south of West Kelowna, the Warriors defeated the Prince George Spruce Kings by a score of 4-3 at Royal LePage Place Friday night.
Prince George sees their record go to 17-13-2-1 while the Warriors create some cushion between them and PG in the standings, bettering their record to 19-10-4-0.
While Prince George outshot the Warriors 30-24, Cayden Hamming was able to hold off the Spruce Kings attack long enough to secure the win.
Jake Bernadet opened the scoring with his sixth of the season less than three minutes into the game. The goal was assisted by Brennan Nelson and Kailus Green.
After the Warriors were called for too many men on the ice, the Spruce Kings capitalized on the powerplay. Austin Fraser was set up for a one-timer at the top of the offensive zone to tie the game up at 1-1.
The score stood at 1-1 into the first intermission.
In the second period, the Spruce Kings put themselves ahead. John Herrington collected the puck along the right side of the left-wing circle before putting the puck on the net. Cayden Hamming made the initial save with his left pad but couldn’t stop Jake Schneider from potting the rebound on the backside of the net.
The lead didn’t last long as the Warriors responded with a goal of their own. Rylee Hlusiak was able to tie the game up at 10:59 of the period. Luke Devlin and Bobby May earned the assists on the play.
Inside the final few minutes of the period, the Warriors capitalized on a powerplay after Colton Cameron was sent off for a blow to the head minor, as well as a misconduct. Ben MacDonald made use of the man advantage and reclaimed the Warriors lead.
Later in the period, Bernadet came in down the left wing before putting the puck between his legs and sending it over to Devlin on the far post just as the buzzer sounded. The goal would stand with fractions of a second remaining on the clock, putting the Spruce Kings behind 4-2 at the end of two periods.
Jordan Fairlie found himself on the bench to start the third period as Aidan Feddema entered the game in relief for the Spruce Kings goalie. Feddema ended the game by stopping the three shots the Warriors put on the net in the final period.
Ty Gagno scored one more to bring Prince George to within one on a solo effort goal, stretching the puck in past the leg of Hamming. The goal marked Gagno’s eighth of the season as Primerano and Fraser added assists.
The Spruce Kings were unable to complete the comeback late in the third as the Warriors went on to win their 19th game of the season.
Prince George will look to get back into the win column Saturday night when they visit the Wenatchee Wild at the Town Toyota Center south of the border.
Spruce Kings: Fraser, Schneider, Gagno
Warriors: Bernadet, Hlusiak, MacDonald, Devlin
Spruce Kings: Jordan Fairlie (L) 40:00 (4 GA, 17 saves)
Aidan Feddema 18:45 (three saves)
Warriors: Cayden Hamming (W) 60:00 (3 GA, 27 saves)
Spruce Kings: 1/3 (33%)
Warriors: 1/4 (25%)
Spruce Kings: 30
Next Game: Saturday, January 14th versus the Wenatchee Wild at Town Toyota Center in Wenatchee, WA.