Wildcats comeback to win first round

Late rally launches female Midget triple-A Kootenay Wildcats over Prince George Cougars.

The female Midget triple-A Kootenay Wildcats survived a first round playoff with the Prince George Cougars, winning two of a best-of-three series in Nelson on the weekend.

After winning the first game 1-0, the Wildcats dropped a close second game 4-3, forcing the rubber match on Sunday.

In Game 3 of the series Sunday, the Cougars jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the second, but an incredible third-period comeback saw the Cats net five unanswered goals to skate away with a thrilling 6-4 victory.

Katie Yuris of Trail netted the winner on a powerplay with 8:05 remaining in the third.

Yuris finished a nice passing play from Slocan’s Shea Weighill and Denomie Vockeroth of Rossland to put the Cats into the next round.

Vockeroth started the scoring for Kootenay, taking a pass from Yuris and beating the Cougar goalie to make it 1-0 seven minutes in.

However, the Cougars stormed back with two goals from Kelly Shawara and singles from January Player of the month Kyanna Prazma and Adrianna Johnson to take a commanding lead.

But Christina Bonacci of Trail cut the margin to two, scoring three minutes into the final frame. Less than a minute later, Bonacci then set up Jordyn Lee to make it 4-3.

With 12:15 to go, Weighill tied it 4-4, scoring the first of two on the night with Vokeroth assisting.

After Yuris netted the winner, Weighill potted an insurance marker to win the series and send the Cats to the semifinal.

Vokeroth had a four point game, scoring once and adding three helpers while Weighill and Yuriss collected three points apiece.

In Trail’s other victory on Friday, Yuris scored with 2:59 left in the second period in what would prove to be the winning goal in an exciting 1-0 opening match win for the Cats.

Vokeroth and Weighill assisted while AP Sarah Doll of Cranbrook earned the shut out in goal and was in net for all three games.

The Kootenay Wildcats next take on the league’s top seed, the Fraser Valley Phantoms, in Langley this weekend.

The victor will play in the final against the winner of the other semifinal matchup between the Thompson- Okanagan Rockets and the Vancouver Fusion.