In a must-win game, the bantam A Tyees rebounded from a loss to advance to the Island semi-finals.
“Puck support, better work ethic and disciplined play were the difference in the victory,” said Peter Apostolakos, head coach of the CR No. 1 Auto Body Tyees hockey team.
The Tyees advanced with a crucial 8-3 victory over Powell River on Sunday at the Rod Brind’Amour Arena.
But the day before, an uneven effort by the home team resulted in a 4-1 loss to the Port Alberni Bulldogs, a team they had defeated twice last December.
The Tyees outshot the Bulldogs 42-20, but had trouble generating quality chances. The Port Alberni goalie also made a number of quality stops.
The Bulldogs opened the scoring, but Grady McInnes got the Tyees back on even terms when he was set up by linemates Gavin Rauser and Domenic Kolbeins.
With the score tied 1-1 going into the third period, undisciplined play put the Tyees in the penalty box and Port Alberni tallied twice with the man advantage. A possible comeback was thwarted when the Bulldogs scored into an empty net.
The next morning, the Tyees were facing elimination if they lost to Powell River. But the local boys came through.
The Tyees carried the play throughout the first few shifts but the visitors scored the opening goal. Campbell River got on track when James Severs broke away from the defence and buried a shot in the top corner to even the score 1-1.
Shortly after, Rauser showed great hustle on the penalty kill to score short-handed at to give the Tyees a 2-1 lead.
But Powell River evened the score early in the second period. Campbell River responded when Severs notched his goal goal of the game and then Kolbeins gave the Tyees a 4-2 lead at the ice clean.
The Tyees continued to pepper the Powell River goalie with shots and were rewarded with Kolbeins notching his second and Travis Goodwin scoring Campbell River’s sixth goal after he had displayed some great hustle in the defensive zone earlier in his shift.
Five minutes into the third, Powell River scored a power play goal to cut the lead. But Rauser scored his second and Tyson Goebel – with his never-say-die work ethic – scored the Tyees seventh and eighth goals to pave the Tyees way to the semi-finals and an 8-3 victory.
On Saturday, the Tyees travel down Island to play the Juan de Fuca Grizzlies in the Island semi-final.