The Beaver Valley Nitehawks earned four points in KIJHL action on the weekend despite a temporary lapse against the Princeton Posse on Friday at the B.V. Arena.
The Hawks squandered a four-goal lead against Princeton but rallied to win 6-5 in overtime, and then kept the pedal down, rolling to a 6-1 thrashing of the Grand Forks Border Bruins the next night.
“Friday against Princeton we were pretty lacklustre,” said Nitehawks coach Terry Jones. “We were up 5-1 and we took some short cuts, made some mistakes and undisciplined at times and allowed them to comeback in the game.”
In Saturday’s game against Grand Forks, Braden Fuller notched the winner at 14:54 of the second period when he took a Jaxon Joseph pass in the high slot and wired a snap shot top corner to put B.V. up 2-0 on their way to Saturday’s 6-1 romp.
“I think we were really quite focused, and I thought Grand Forks threw a great effort at us . . . They have a good hard working team, I’m impressed with what they are doing and they forced us to work hard.”
Tyler Ghiradhosi put the Hawks on the board two minutes and 50 seconds into the first, banging in a cross ice feed from Devin Nemes to give B.V. a 1-0 lead through one period.
After Fuller put the Hawks up 2-0, Philip Lam’s shot from the right circle eluded B.V. goalie Jason Mailhiot to bring the Bruins within one at 6:27. But B.V. shut the door after that, with Coleton Dawson scoring with 54 seconds in the middle frame to restore the two goal lead.
The Nitehawks outshot the Bruins 30-13 through two periods and added three more in the final frame on a pair of goals from Tyler Hartman and a single from Dylan Heppler to make it a 6-1 game. Ghiradhosi had a three point night while Kyle Hope tallied two assists, as B.V. fired 49 shots at Anthony Galliart and Mailhiot stopped 20 in net for the host team.
“I thought we played a much sounder 60 minute game on Saturday, no question,” said Jones.
In Friday’s match, the Nitehawks built a 5-1 lead in the second period on goals from Hope, Dawson, a pair from Michael Pruss, and one from Jaxon Joseph before Princeton rallied to tie it. Posse forward Joshua Dixon netted a shorthanded marker with 4:50 remaining to even it at 5-5 and send it into overtime, where Jace Weegar would end it for the Hawks just 41 seconds in, as B.V. outshot the Posse 38-23.
Beaver Valley continues to reign atop the Neil Murdoch standings with a 13-2-0-0 record to stay a point up on the 12-3-0-1 Castlegar Rebels despite some major adversity.
The Hawks goalie situation grew dire last week when the Hawks only goalie, Drake Poirier, contracted a virus and is out of the lineup indefinitely. B.V. picked up Trail native Jason Mailhiot who became available when the Creston Valley Thundercats signed Kai McDonald, a former Border Bruin, from the Summerside Capitals of the Maritime Junior Hockey League.
“Since (Brandon) Wells left we’ve been patient we want to find a number one goalie, so the guys that have been letting go from Junior A camps are the guys we are trying to target,” said Jones.
“With Drake out we signed Jason Mailhiot and he did a pretty good job for us this weekend. That’s his opportunity, and he seized it so he just has to continue to work hard in practice, and show us that he is a capable goalie for us.”
The Hawks lost goalie Brandon Wells and defenceman Brett Roberts earlier this month to the Saskatchewan and Alberta Junior Hockey Leagues and then were hit with more bad news when defenceman Tyler Leicht suffered a career ending knee injury last week.
“We lose two guys Roberts and Wells, who are just really capable and good guys