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Victoria Grizzlies stymie Kings to take back control

Kyle McGRath has a pair of goals to pace the Grizzlies on Monday night in Game 3.

Cleve Dheensaw / Times Colonist
MARCH 18, 2019 09:57 PM

The boys from the Rock — the other Rock — and a goalie from Alberta were the difference Monday night in Powell River as the Victoria Grizzlies defeated the Kings 5-0 to take a 2-1 lead in their best-of-seven B.C. Hockey League second-round playoff series.

Newfoundlanders Kyle McGrath and Alex Newhook, the latter projected for the first round of the 2019 NHL draft, were named the game’s second and third stars. McGrath scored twice while Newhook added two assists.

The first star was goaltender Kurtis Chapman, the 20-year-old Calgary native, who recorded a 31-save shutout.

Riley Hughes, a 2018 NHL draft pick of the New York Rangers, also had a noteworthy night with three assists.

The Island Division-champion Grizzlies were full value for the victory after an overtime loss on Saturday night that evened the series for Island Division second-seed Powell River on Saturday night at The Q Centre.

“The boys responded. They came out and were relentless all night,” said Grizzlies GM and head coach Craig Didmon.

“We got stonger as night went on. Powell River had a push in the third period, but Chapman stepped up with some big saves. Overall, it was a team effort and every guy laid it out on the ice. The guys were focused and committed. They want something this year and are going after it.”

Asked if there was a particular aspect to the game Didmon liked, he responded: “Our physicality.”

The other Victoria goals came from defenceman Carter Berger, one of four Grizzlies projected for the 2019 NHL draft, Eddie Yan and Cam Thompson.

The fourth game is tonight in Powell River and fifth game Friday at The Q Centre.

The other Island Division team still alive, the upstart 16th overall seed Cowichan Valley Capitals, who have become the darlings of the BCHL, continue their upset-minded quest through the post-season when they face the defending BCHL-champion Wenatchee Wild tonight and Wednesday at the Stick in Duncan. That second-round series is tied 1-1.


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