Kootenay Ice host the defending BCMML champion Fraser Valley Thunderbirds on Saturday and Sunday at the Cominco Arena. Jim Bailey photo.

BCMML: Kootenay Ice take two from Royals

The Kootenay Ice swept their two-game series against the South Island Royals on the weekend

Kootenay Ice left Victoria on Sunday with two big wins in BC Major Midget League hockey action on the weekend.

The Ice defeated the South Island Royals 5-2 on Saturday then completed the sweep with a 4-2 victory on Sunday.

Ice forward Ashton Underhill scored Sunday’s game winner converting a setup from Cole Cowan and Noah Quinn with 5:28 remaining in the third period to give the Ice a 3-2 lead.

The game-winning tally was Underhill’s third goal and fifth point of the season for the 16-year-old Whitehorse product.

Kootenay had a tough run, going 0-6 against three of the top teams in the league, before breaking out of their slump.

Related read: Okanagan Rockets sweep Kootenay Ice

South Island’s Simon Pollock put the Royals up 1-0 at 11:52 of the first period, but Kootenay replied just over a minute later when Anthony Williams and Underhill set up Noah Quinn for a shorthanded tally.

South Island’s Ethan Ewer scored the lone goal in the middle period with 43 seconds remaining for a 2-1 Royals lead.

But the Ice rallied in the third. Trail’s Ethan Smyth tied it at 17:21 with helpers going to Austin McKenzie and Gavin Damstrom.

After a Kootenay goal was disallowed, Underhill gave the Ice the lead, and Connor Cooper, another Whitehorse recruit, notched his first of the season with an empty net goal to make it 4-2 with 49 seconds left on the clock.

The victory improves Kootenay’s record to 3-7-0-0 good for eighth place in the BCMML.

In Saturday’s match, Ice forward McKenzie had a three-point game, scoring twice and adding an assist in a 5-2 victory.

The Fruitvale native opened the scoring firing in a pass from Cooper at 13:05 for a 1-0 Kootenay lead. The Royals tied it before the period was out and Ewer gave the home team a 2-1 lead at 11:21 on the second period.

Luken Murray tied it for the Ice at 9:04 and Underhill scored a shorthanded goal at 2:19 for the 3-2 lead. Smyth and McKenzie rounded out the scoring as the Ice scored four unanswered goals for the 5-2 victory.

The Ice are back home next weekend and host the 2018-19 BCMML champion, Fraser Valley Thunderbirds. The two-game series will be a good test for Kootenay and an opportunity to move up the standings. After finishing first in the regular season last year, the Thunderbirds are off to an inconsistent start going 4-3-0-1 this season and sit in fifth in the BCMML standings.


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