The Beaver Valley Nitehawks are hurting but they keep putting up Ws in the KIJHL standings.
Despite having six players in the press box, the Nitehawks won a pair of games on the weekend, beating Summerland Steam 6-2 on Saturday night before dumping Spokane Braves 7-2 on Sunday.
The Nitehawks have suffered a rash of injuries lately with Dallas Calvin, Arie Postmus, Derek Lashuk, Jacob Boyczuk and rookie Scott Davidson out with injury and Bryan Hinchcliffe sidelined due to suspension.
To remedy the situation, the Nitehawks called up 16-year-old Jake Luccini and the injection of new blood proved just what the team needed.
Luccini responded with a huge night, scoring twice and adding an assist to lead the Hawks. He was also named the game’s first star while another 16-year-old rookie, Craig Martin, was named third star.
In both games the Nitehawks dominated, but a growing concern of the team has been the number of missed opportunities, said assistant coach Jeremy Cominotto.
“The inability to capitalize may eventually come back to bite us, that’s what we’re worried about,” he added.
In the game against Summerland, the Nitehawks got off to a quick start, enjoying five power plays in the first period and scoring on two to go up 2-1.
“It should have been 7-1, I mean their goalie played well, but we missed a lot of chances,” said Cominotto.
Christian Johnson picked up two goals and an assist, while Justin Niminiken pitched in with three points on a goal and two assists, while Ryan Edwards counted two goals.
The Hawks out shot the Braves 43-29 with Zach Perehudoff getting the win.
In the Spokane game Sunday, the Hawks attack seemed to be clicking a little better against Spokane as they took advantage of fewer scoring chances.
Ryan Edwards continued his torrid scoring pace, knocking in a pass from Chris Derochie and Fraser Stang to go up 1-0. Luccini would convert a Max Flanagan pass to make it 2-0 before Edwards would score his second late in the first period.
Spokane got on the board five minutes into the second period but Martin and Archie McKinnon would each add one to take a 5-1 lead into the third.
In an undisciplined third period where the Nitehawks took six minor penalties, the Braves could only capitalize on one power play.
Luccini and Mason Spear rounded out the scoring for the Hawks, as Beaver Valley goalie Mike Vlanich faced 30 shots for the victory, while the Nitehawks fired 34 at the Braves’ duo of Brandon Amatto and Mitch Tyson.
Summerland helped out the Nitehawks in the Neil Mudoch division standings by beating first place Nelson Leafs Sunday 6-5.