Kevin Rothbauer Citizen
The Cowichan Valley Capitals managed to force a sixth game in their first-round B.C. Hockey League series against the Powell River Kings, but the Kings ended the series with an overtime goal in game six in Duncan last Saturday.
Powell River’s Kyle Betts buried the series-winner behind Cowichan goalie Storm Phaneuf just 72 seconds into the extra session. The teams had been tied 1-1 after the first period and 2-2 after the second, and the scoreless third period led to overtime.
Jared Domin opened the scoring for the Caps at 2:12 of the first period, but the Kings struck just 59 seconds after that. Former Cowichan defenceman Rylan Ball gave Powell River the lead at 11:38 of the second, but that didn’t last long, either, as Caps captain Adam Osczevski scored less than two minutes later.
The Caps outshot the Kings 32-26 in the game, but Jeff Smith out-dueled Phaneuf 32 saves to 26.
The Kings won the first two games of the series in Powell River, and the teams split the next two in Duncan, sending it back to Powell River for gave five. Osczevski scored twice in that one, including an empty-netter, and added an assist as the Caps stayed alive with a 3-1 victory.
Luke Santerno also scored, and Corey Hoffman had two assists, while Phaneuf stopped 48 of 49 assists in a heroic outing.
The series marked Cowichan’s return to the playoffs after a four-year absence. The team hasn’t won a playoff series since 2008/09.
Hoffman finished the six-game series as the Capitals’ leading scorer, with 10 points on three goals and seven assists. Ayden MacDonald was second with seven points on a goal and six helpers.