The Beaver Valley Nitehawks soared to its fifth win in a row with three victories over Neil Murdoch division rivals on the weekend.
The Hawks skated to a 4-2 victory Friday over the Nelson Leafs and an impressive 7-2 win over the Castlegar Rebels, before a 6-2 drubbing of the Spokane Braves Sunday afternoon.
On Sunday against the Braves, Nitehawks forward Nolan Percival scored the winner with four minutes 30 seconds left in the second period, slamming in the rebound off a Jake Yuris point shot to make it 3-2 heading to the third. The victories put the Hawks four points ahead of Castlegar for top spot in the division, and still hold one game in hand.
Jaxon Joseph opened the scoring finishing a pretty 2-on-1 with Braden Fuller with a snipe to the top corner at 5:49 of the first period for his 13th goal of the season. But Spokane tied it on the power play when Austin Breen went top shelf on Hawk goalie Drake Poirier.
Smoke Eater rookie Blake Sidoni made a power move to the front of the net and slid the puck between Norman’s pads to make it 2-1 with 2:56 to play in the opening frame, as the Hawks outshot the Braves 16-9.
The Braves picked up the pace in the second, going end to end with the Hawks until a Mason Jones blast snuck by Poirier with 4:59 to play in the middle frame.
After Percival sent the game into the third with a 3-2 lead, the Hawks struck three times in the final frame. Tyler Ghiradosi netted a power play goal shoveling in a rebound off a Yuris point shot to make it 4-2 at 16:10, then Sam Swanson made a pretty play in the slot, dropping it back to McKoy Hauk who sent a low screen shot by Norman for a 5-2 Hawk lead. Dyler Heppler then finished off the scoring taking a pass from Joseph stepping around the defenceman and wiring a laser top corner to complete the scoring with 5:36 to play.
The Nitehawks outshot the Braves 41-26 going 1-for-3 on the power play, while the Braves went 1-for-7. Joseph was the Hawks player of the game while Norman got the nod for Spokane.
On Saturday, Swanson scored twice and added an assist to lead the Hawks to a 7-2 victory over the Rebels. The Nitehawks jumped out to a 4-0 first period lead on Swansons two goals and singles from Brett Roberts and Karsten Jang. The Rebels Mike Bhatoa would score two in the final minutes of the first, but goals from Roberts, Devin Nemes, and Joseph rounded out the scoring for the Hawks in the final two periods.
Tallon Kramer stopped 32 shots for the Hawks, while Logan Sawka and Joseph McLeod combined for 41 for the Rebels.
On Friday, Drake Poirier was stellar in net stopping 42 of 44 shots to backstop the Hawks to a 4-2 victory over the Nelson Leafs. Ryan Terpsma and former Leaf Nolan Percival gave B.V. a 2-0 lead after two periods but Malcolm Fenelon made it 2-1 midway through the final frame before Braden Fuller scored on the power play for what would prove to be the winner with 6:09 left in the third. With just over one minute remaining, Swanson added an empty netter to make it 4-1 and the Leafs scored a consolation marker with one second left to end it.
The Leafs outshot B.V. 43-32 on the night with Poirier getting the game star honour for the Hawks.
The Hawks next games go in Grand Forks on Friday and Fernie on Saturday.