The Campbell River Storm improved their record against North Division rivals to a perfect 9-0 after a pair of weekend victories that came about in very different ways.
On Friday night, the Black and Red thundered out of the gate so quickly that the Nanaimo Buccaneers didn’t know what hit them. By the end of the first period, the Storm held a 4-0 lead.
Carter Hikichi opened the scoring a minute into the contest when he connected on an airborne goal mouth pass from Aaron Brewer.
Later in the period, Reid Wilson split the defence but was in so tight that goalie John Hawthorne was able to knock the puck away. It ended up behind the big forward who was heading to the corner. He reached behind and fired off a shot that somehow found its way into the net.
Brewer and Colin Blake were the standouts in a period that the home team simply dominated. Each picked up a goal and two assists.
As quickly as the Storm goals came they ended. For one of the few times this season, the team ran into penalty trouble. Storm Head Coach, Lee Stone felt the parade to the box disrupted his team’s flow, “When you sit in the penalty box as often as we did, I don’t care how good you are, the other team is going to eventually get some momentum.”
Midway through the second, Nanaimo struck on the power play when Dawson Heathcote pounced on a rebound. The Bucs drew to within two when Cole Broadhurst deflected a Clayton Peace point blast past Storm goalie Chris Smith.
That would be as close as the Buccaneers would get.
On a Storm team loaded with talent, the Brewer, Hikichi, Christian Brandt line has been the most productive. These three were responsible for 12 points over the weekend including 7 in a 5-3 win against the Oceanside Generals Saturday night in Parksville.
The Storm got off to a disastrous start at the Howie Meeker Arena falling behind 3-0 in the first 11 minutes. Before the period came to an end Hikichi got one back for the visitors.
Brandt scored the first of his two from his spot in the slot at 14:42 of the second. From that point on the Storm controlled recording three in the final period for the victory. Besides Brandt’s second of the night, Zach Erhardt and Logan Cursley found the net.
For Cursley, it was his first Junior hockey goal and it was a nice one. The defenceman moved in from the point, fired a shot then picked up his own rebound and placed it around the sprawling netminder.
The storm followed the weekend performance with another win in Colwood against the Westshore Wolves on Wednesday.
Tomorrow night (Nov. 4), they’re home to the second-place Comox Valley Glacier Kings before traveling back down to Parksville Saturday.