The Border Bruins played two divisional games last week, starting with an at-home match against the Beaver Valley Nitehawks.
The Bruins entered the game on a two-game streak against the Hawks ,with a 6-1 win at home on Dec. 4 and a 3-2 victory in Fruitvale on Jan. 4. The Nitehawks spent a good part of the first seven minutes shorthanded, and the Bruins took advantage with Jackson Smith and Ollie Morberg notching powerplay goals.
A Bruins penalty shortly after was costly, when Nathan Dominici scored for Beaver Valley, cutting the Bruins lead in half. Through the middle of the period, the teams exchanged goals with Leo Senger picking up his first career KIJHL goal, and Cooper Ross collecting his fourth of the season. Shots in the period were 15-13 favouring the Hawks.
The Bruins dominated in the second period, registering 17 shots to the Hawks nine, and picking up three goals in the process. Early in the period, Brydon Bell intercepted a clearing attempt and flipped the puck ahead, finding Jameson Flint on the open side of the Nitehawks’ net. Midway through the period, Jackson Smith spotted Ray Warrack at the Nitehawks’ blue line, behind the two Nitehawks defencemen. They couldn’t catch up on the breakaway and Warrack flipped the puck over the left shoulder of Owen Albers. With 15 seconds left in the period, the Nitehawks poked the puck away from Matteus Reis right to Walker Douglas. Douglas flipped the puck to the net while tumbling to the ice, and pushed the Bruins lead to four. There was no scoring until late in the third period, despite significant pressure from the Nitehawks (19 shots to the Bruins’ 9 in the third). Hayden Stocks scored for the Nitehawks with 5:44 to go, but that was it. The final score on Tuesday night was 6-3 Bruins.
On Friday night the Bruins traveled to Nelson. Leafs’ captain Tyler Pisiak scored the first two goals, with a shorthanded marker midway through the first, and another early in the second, with Nelson leading 2-0 after two periods. In the third, the Leafs started with an early goal by Bennett Anklewich, but Brydon Bell and Jameson Flint teamed up to prevent the shut-out, with the Bruins’ lone goal of the game at 7:25. Simon Nemethy added a second shorthanded goal midway through the frame, giving the Leafs a 4-1 victory at home.
The Bruins and Leafs will face each other again after the press deadline, but before this edition hits the street, with a game at the Jack Goddard Memorial Arena on Tuesday night. The Bruins will be on a mission to solve Nelson netminders Tenzin Mint and Dylan Marshall, who have not given up a game to the Border Bruins yet this season. The Bruins play at home again on Saturday night, Jan. 22, against the Beaver Valley Nitehawks. The season series is tied at three games apiece, but while the Hawks won three in a row at the start of the season, the Bruins have done the same and currently control the streak. That series will continue into the next week, with a Tuesday match at the Beaver Valley Arena on Jan. 25.