The Summerland Steam played host on Saturday night to the visiting Princeton Posse, and came out on top with a 5-1 victory. The Steam came in after losing a close game to the North Okanagan Knights on Tuesday night, and Princeton came in after suffering defeat at the hands of the division leading Kelowna Chiefs on Friday. Both teams were looking to get back on the winning track and gain some ground in a very tough Okanagan Division.
First period action saw the Steam outshoot the Princeton Posse 21-8, and come out with a 1-0 lead on a goal from Paulsen Lautard at the 3:30 mark of the period. A giveaway in front of the Princeton net onto the stick of Daylan Robertson allowed the Steam a second shot opportunity and Lautard made no mistake putting the puck past the outstretched leg of Posse goaltender Scott Legault.
In the second the script was flipped, as Princeton really took it to the Summerland Steam. The Posse managed 12 shots on Steam starter Brett Huber, and just 3 minutes into the period they were able to even the score. A shot from defenseman Kendal Biro rang off the post to the right of the Steam goaltender and right onto the stick of Destin Robinson, who was able to slide it into a yawning cage to tie the game 1-1. Both teams pushed for that second goal to give them the lead, but neither were successful and the period ended in a 1-1 tie.
The third period brought these two Okanagan Division rivals together with 2 points hanging in the balance, and the Summerland Steam were able to capitalize on their opportunity. The game winner came just 2:39 into the third off the stick of Gordon Walters. He was able to shake a defender as he skated down the wing and potted his first career KIJHL goal to give his team the lead early in the 3rd. That goal also marked the first point of the season for Summerland native Nelson Hurry, who made a nice pass to Walters as he came through the neutral zone. That goal made it 2-1, and the Steam rolled on from there. The next tally came off the stick of Reid Brown, who took a shot from the circle that bounced off a Princeton defender and behind Legault to extend the lead to 3-1 with 14:10 to go in the third. Brown tallied again on a shorthanded breakaway into an empty net with 1:28 to go in the third to make it 4-1 before Kienan Scott iced it just 28 later with a goal off a 2on1 with Paulsen Lautard.
It was a tightly contested hockey game that was not indicative of the final score. Princeton came in with bite and played a good road game through two periods, but they were simply outmatched in the third. Brett Huber put in a tidy effort stopping 28 of the 29 Posse shots he saw in the game.
The Steam move on to face the North Okanagan Knights at the Summerland Arena on December 3rd. It's a Tuesday night tilt between two teams fighting for position in the Okanagan Division, so there will be no shortage of emotion in the game.
Come on out and support the great young talent in the KIJHL, and if you can't, join myself and the broadcast team for the game on KIJHL.ca! We've got you covered!
Full BoxScore: http://www.kijhl.ca/leagues/hockey_boxscores.cfm?clientID=2223&leagueID=5221&gameID=1242143