Last night was quite the night for the Spruce Kings, as they defeated their Interior Rivals Vernon 7-2. It was a game that was so lop-sided due to a 4 goal onslaught in the second period. It was a game that showed jut how dangerous the Spruce King can be when they are on. It was a game that could go a long way towards helping them get back into the post season. The Spruce Kings came into this match up 4 points ahead of the Vipers. They had just beaten the Vipers a few weeks earlier, and needed to make a statement in front of the Prince George Faithful.
They started the contest exactly how you would hope if you were Coach Dave Dupas. The Spruce Kings took advantage of a defensive break down on the Vipers part as Tyson Witala put home a Cody Bardock rebound. It was long after though that Ben Matthews took a penalty that would cost his team their first lead. Vernon has the 3rd ranked power play in the league, and it showed as Patrick Macgillis scored 12 seconds in to tie the game up.
The second period was the breakout frame for the Spruce Kings, and as Todd and myself said in the broadcast, maybe the best second period this team has played all season. Jujhar Khiara scored 39 seconds in to light the crowd up. Jarryd Ten Vaanholt, Paul De Jersey and Zach Rassell would all adds goals in the 2nd to take complete control o fthe hockey game. The period was a fast and furious one, but it was a definite statement from a team that was looking to prove that they desereved to be where they are.
The third period saw the Vipers add a goal from Ben Gamache, but it was sandwiched in between Gerry Fitzgerald's 1st of the game and Khaira's 2nd. Ty Swabb would skate away with the win, making 33 saves in the victory.
A couple of key thoughts that I took away from this game. Sean Landrey has really found his stride with the Spruce Kings. The youngster struggled a bit out of the gate this season, but he has found a way to use his size in a postive and violent manner. Landrey has dropped the mitts and thrown his weight around quite a bit in the past few games, and it has worked well for the Prince George native. The Fitzgerald's didn't play one shift together tonight as Coach Dupas had they split up with a different variety of lines all night. Nobody is sure if this is going to be a recurring thing, but it seemed to work for tonight. And, Paul De Jersey and Jujhar Khaira continued to have success against the Vernon Vipers. Through 5 games against the Vipers, De Jersey has 6 goals and 6 assists while Khaira has 4 goals and 6 assists.
To read the full box score, click here
These two teams will reunite this afternoon at the Castle for another tilt. The Spruce Kings need to build off of last night's win and continue to push Chilliwack below them in the standings. Last weekend we saw they squander a chance to send Chilliwack home with 2 losses and they can let the same thing happen today. Puck drops at the Prince George Coliseum today at 3pm. If you cannot make it to the rink, you catch the game here
Go Spruce Kings!!!