The Beaver Valley Nitehawks came out with conviction on Thursday night, as they jumped out to a 3-1 first period lead against the Kelowna Chiefs and never looked back, skating to a 7-1 victory in Game 2 of the KIJHL final.
Dallas Calvin would net the winner, counting his first of three on the night, on a power play marker at 6:07 of the first.
After the Chiefs P. J. Lawler took a penalty for slashing, the Nitehhawks AP Jake Lucchini made a pretty pass to Calvin at the point who blasted it past Kelowna goalie Tyler O’Donnell to make it 2-1.
The Nitehawks came out flying in the first but it was Kelowna that started the scoring at 14:47. A quick face off win in the Hawks zone set up Tre Mason who snapped it past Zach Perehudoff to put the Chiefs up 1-0.
But the lead was short lived, as the Hawks Dallas Calvin skated in over the blue line cut across the front of the net drawing a defenceman and goalie before neatly sending a slick pass over to Tyler Collins who deposited in the open cage to tie it at one.
“I thought we got off to a great start, even though Kelowna managed to get the first goal, I thought we responded really well with our forecheck, it was pretty relentless tonight and I thought our defensive play was top notch,” said Hawks assistant coach Jeremy Cominotto.
The Nitehawks continued to press, winning every battle in the corner and executing a smothering forecheck that paid dividends.
Following Calvin’s goal to make it 2-1, Nick Perez scored his first of two on the night with just over two minutes remaining in the opening frame. Calvin carried the puck into the Chiefs end, waited and hit the trailing defenceman with a pass that Perez wired low glove-side to make it 3-1 heading into the second.
The Nitehawks never let up, and were even more impressive scoring two more high-light goals, with Derochie setting up Perez for his second of the night and Lucchini making a dazzling move on a break away to make it 5-1 going into the third.
“That was one of the things we talked about tonight, was showing a little more patience and maybe out waiting the goaltender a little bit more, and I thought our guys did a great job of that so far.”
Calvin added two more late in the third to give him five-points on the night and first-star honours, while Lucchini was named second star, and Zach Perehudoff third star, making 24 saves, in another solid outing. Tyler Collins also had a goal and two assists.
Mason Spear missed his second game with a shoulder injury and is uncertain for Game 3, while Brantley Shapansky is day-to-day with a sore shoulder, after laying down numerous crushing blows in the opening game.
“We have a lot of skill on this team and when we get the puck moving and our feet moving, magic can happen,” added Cominotto.
The Nitehawks next home game will be Tuesday at 7 p.m. if necessary.