Storm hit by the flu bug, lose top forward

Forward Michael Olson is in the midst of an outstanding breakout season

Just when it looked like the Campbell River Storm was going to be 100 percent healthy the injury bug has bitten again.

Forward Michael Olson, who is in the midst of an outstanding breakout season, will not be in the line-up tonight when the Storm hosts the Oceanside Generals at Rod Brind’Amour Arena.

Olson is expected to miss up to a month with an upper body injury.   The veteran left winger has been one of the most consistent offensive weapons for the locals this year, scoring 24 times and adding 28 assists in 34 games played.

“We’re going to miss him,” says Storm head coach Lee Stone, “But on the bright side, we should have him back in time for the playoffs.  I’d rather it happen now than a month down the road.”

Stone had a trio of forwards back in the line-up last weekend after recovering from long-term injuries – Grady McInnes, Zack Sanderson, and Dane Feeney.   He expects Daine Elphicke and Brendan Enns to return for tonight’s tilt against the Generals.

“Daine and Brendan add a physical presence to our game so it will definitely be nice to have them back,” says Stone.

No one has been on the injury list longer than assistant captain Josiah Friesen, who suffered a broken wrist in the first month of the schedule.  But the waiting may be just about over for the smooth skating centreman.

“Josiah is getting real close,” says Stone, “I think we may get him back in the line-up next week, possibly for the game (Thursday) against Victoria.”

The Storm is still in a dogfight with the Cougars for first place overall in the VIJHL standings, while Oceanside is desperately trying to keep their flickering post-season hopes alive.  The Generals, who are coming off a surprise 6-6 tie with the Nanaimo Buccaneers last weekend, are in a battle with the Peninsula Panthers for the last playoff spot.

Puck drop tonight is set for 7:30 at Rod Brind’Amour Arena.