The Beaver Valley Nitehawks offence sputtered on Saturday as the home team fell for the first time this season to the Spokane Braves.
B.V. managed just 20 shots on the Spokane net in a 3-1 loss, following a 3-2 road win against the Fernie Ghostriders Friday.
It was the second straight victory for the 17-22-0-4 Braves over Murdoch Division rivals, coming on the heels of a 5-2 win over the Castlegar Rebels on Friday.
Spokane forward Bear Hughes opened the scoring at 17:08 of the first period finishing a set up from Jed Butler and Mark Oestreich for his team-leading 41st goal and 62nd point of the season. Six minutes later Aaron Morris put the Braves up 2-0 beating Hawks goalie Noah Decottignies, as Spokane outshot Beaver Valley 12-7 in the first period.
The Nitehawks got on the board in the middle frame when Marty Ingram converted a Morgan Peace pass at 18:42 to cut the lead to one.
Spokane goalie Campbell Arnold shut the door from there and with Decottignies on the bench for an extra attacker, Alex Enegren scored unassisted into the empty net for the 3-1 final.
Spokane outshot the Nitehawks 25-20, while both teams were 0-for-5 on the power play.
The Braves win over the Nitehawks lifts Spokane into third place, a point ahead of the Grand Forks Border Bruins in the Neil Murdoch Division with six games remaining in the regular season, while the 21-15-3-2 Hawks sit comfortably in second place, trailing the first place Nelson Leafs (30-10-2-1) by 15 points.
On Friday, the Nitehawks Ryan Crisalli scored the game-winning goal at 18:41 of the third period, and Decottignies was solid in the crease stopping 30 shots in the 3-2 victory.
After a scoreless first period, Simon Nemethy put the Nitehawks on the board just 44 seconds in, and less than two minutes later, Michael Hagen notched his 10th of the season on a setup from Marty and Nathan Ingram for a 2-0 B.V. lead.
The Ghostriders Keelan Saworski cut the lead to one, scoring a power-play marker at 13:41 as the Ghostriders ramped up the pressure, outshooting the Nitehawks 13-7 in the period.
Crisalli made it 3-1 just over 79 seconds into the third period on a nice play from Paul Leroux and Hagen. Fernie’s Keelan Saworski scored at 12:27 on the power play in a physical third period but the Nitehawks played well defensively and held on for the 3-2 victory.
Fernie outshot B.V. 32-27 and went 2-for-4 on the power play, while the Hawks were 0-for-2.
Beaver Valley has a big three-game weekend starting with the Castlegar Rebels on Friday at the Hawks Nest. Nelson makes their final regular season visit to Beaver Valley on Saturday with the puck drop at 7:30 p.m. and the Hawks travel to Spokane on Sunday for a 2 p.m. tilt against the Braves.