North Okanagan Knights stay alive in KIJHL final

The North Okanagan Knights avoided elimination by skating to a 3-2 victory over the Castlegar Rebels Saturday in Armstrong.

The North Okanagan Knights remained alive in the KIJHL playoff series with a 3-2 win over Castlegar Rebels Saturday night in Armstrong.

The Rebeles took a commanding 3-0 series lead Friday with a 2-0 shut out of the Knights, but the NOKs would not go quietly.

The Rebels threw everything they had at Knights goalie Dustin Nikkel who stopped 56 of 58 shots for first star honours and the victory.

Mat Lambert scored what proved to be the winner at 12:50 of the third. Lambert converted a pass from Steven Pantazopoulos to give the Knights a 3-1 lead. The Rebels’ Stuart Walton would cut the lead to one with 8:52 to go, but Nikkel came up big time and again to preserve the victory.

After Castlegar’s Darren Medeiros took a cross checking penalty, Dryden Profeit would open the scoring for the North Okanagan beating Rebel goalie Jordan Gluck who stopped 17 of 20 on the night.

The Knights would go up 2-0 on a Connor Richards goal, but less than a minute later Castlegar got on the board when Medeiros made a nice individual effort and fired one by Nikkel to make it 2-1, before Lambert’s goal would seal it.

Game 5 of the best-of-seven game series goes tonight at the Castlegar Rec Complex at 7:30 p.m.