Big weekend for the Storm

What a week for the Campbell River Storm, an impressive win over the high flying Saanich Braves, a number one ranking among BC Junior B teams and no less than three trades.

On Nov. 6, the team sent forward Dom Kolbeins back to the Victoria Cougars, where he started the season, for future considerations. On Thursday, goaltender, Zak Myrowich was traded to the Comox Valley Glacier Kings for the rights to Ben Raffler who is currently playing with the BCHL Powell River Kings. The Storm could afford to lose a very talented young netminder because of the major deal that Stone had struck just days before.

The Storm acquired all-star goalie Matt Henwood and veteran defenseman Josh Harvey from the Oceanside Generals in exchange for their top scoring D-man, Colton Rhodes. Henwood is expected to make his first Storm start this weekend, while Harvey has already made an impression on his teammates in Campbell River’s 7-3 victory over the Braves on Friday in Saanich.

Harvey scored twice, added a helper and was selected first star in his debut.

Head Coach Lee Stone said following the game, “I think everyone in our league was interested in Josh, we’re really happy he wanted to be here and we were able to make it work.” Stone added, “Harv adds a calming influence on the back end, he moves the puck well and he’s effective in getting the puck out of our zone.”

The Storm played one of their best games of the season on Friday. Their forecheck was merciless leading to countless Saanich turnovers on their side of the ice. According to Stone, “We hammered on some systems in practice this week and tonight we took a lot of options away from them.”

With the Storm leading 5-3 in the third period, the Braves were looking to make a comeback, buoyed by a Brandon Fushimi goal. That is when Chris Smith made the save of the game robbing the league’s top sniper, Nick Guerra, who was alone in the slot. Smith, the game’s third star, chuckled after the game, “I didn’t really see it; I just flashed the glove.” The league’s top goaltender made 29 stops for his 14th win of the season.

In addition to Harvey, Campbell River received goal production from Colin Blake, Kobe Oishi, Aaron Brewer, Reid Wheeldon and Zach Erhardt. Guerra managed a pair for the Braves.

The Storm victory improved their win percentage to .818 which is tops in the province for Junior B teams. It also provides them with a 7 point cushion in the North Division as the VIJHL approaches the midpoint of their season.

The Storm will be busy this weekend with three games. On Thursday they are in Nanaimo, on Friday home to Kerry Park (7:30) and on Sunday they host Comox Valley (4 p.m.).