The Kerry Park Islanders were hoping to carry some momentum over from their three-game winning streak into last Thursday’s showdown against the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League-leading Victoria Cougars, a team they hadn’t beaten since the 2012 playoffs.
Unfortunately, once again, the Isles didn’t have an answer for the Cougars, losing 8-0.
“Same old story,” Islanders owner Mark Osmond lamented. “They played well for about 12 minutes. I thought, ‘we’re in this game.’”
At 13:16 of the first period, the Isles took a hooking penalty, and the Cougars took advantage of the ensuing powerplay. By the end of the opening frame, the Cougars were up 2-0, but Osmond still had hope.
“It wasn’t that bad,” he said. “We had a couple of chances we should have put away, but we were still in it. The Cougars broke away after that, scoring three times in each of the second and third periods, including two more powerplay goals and a successful penalty shot.
“We got hammered on penalties again,” Osmond said. “We played awful. We deserved to lose.”
The Isles played much better on Saturday night as they were edged 3-2 at home by the Comox Valley Glacier Kings.
“It was a really good game, a very fast game,” Osmond commented. “Neither team has a lot of big guys, but they both have very fast skaters. The difference was that we didn’t bury our chances.”
Zack Smith and Parker Ellis provided the offence for the Isles, while Ty Rennie stopped 25 of 28 shots.
“t was a good rebound from Thursday night,” Osmond said. “It was for a lack of effort that we lost.”
The Isles will get another crack at the Cougars this Thursday evening. On Friday, they head north to face the Oceanside Generals, and on Saturday they will be at home against the Westshore Wolves. The team will honour Nick Collins on Saturday, marking nine years since the Kerry Park minor hockey goalie and volunteer died when he was struck by a car.