The World Financial Group-sponsored Nanaimo Clippers continue their postseason play in the second round for the Fred Page Cup. After winning their first series against the Victoria Grizzlies four games to two, the Clippers set their sights on the top seeded Alberni Valley Bulldogs, who were coming off a bye week. Would the shipmen be able to teach the dogs some new tricks?
Game one was played at Weyerhaeuser Arena on March 9. Five minutes had not passed in the game when forward Andrew Gladiuk scored on the power play to give the Clippers an early lead. The Clippers scored again a few minutes later thanks to a Joe Perry goal to make the score 2-0 going into the first intermission. The Bulldogs scored in the second period of the game, but Nanaimo put game one away, with a final score of 3-1, thanks to a Brayden Jaw power play goal. Clippers goalie Loic Boivin, who blocked 48 out of 49 shots, was named the First Star of the game and Victor Newell was named the Second Star of the Game for his timely assist in the first period.
But the Clippers wouldn’t have much time to enjoy their victory, with game two played the next night also at Weyerhaeuser. The Bulldogs drew first blood, and the Clippers wouldn’t find themselves on the scoreboard until Cody Bremner scored on a power play in the second to tie the game 1-1. Late in the third, Alberni Valley took the lead, but Clippers’ Colton Cyr scored with 38 seconds remaining in the game to take a 2-2 tie and force overtime. Alas, the Bulldogs won the game on a power play goal in the extra period with the final score 3-2. Clippers goalie Loic Boivin earned Third Star of the Game honors for blocking 42 out of 45 shots.
With the series tied at one game apiece, the WFG-sponsored Clippers had the welcome change of hosting the Bulldogs in the friendly confines of Frank Crane Arena on Thursday, March 11. Although Alberni Valley took an early lead, the Clippers’ Carson Schell scored in the first to tie the game at 1-1. Nanaimo would then score the next three goals thanks to Joe Perry, Cody Bremner and Brayden Jaw (on the power play) to give the Clippers a three goal lead to end the second. Although, the Bulldogs eventually scored in the third, Nanaimo took game three 4-2 and a 2-1 lead in the series. For their hard playing, Joe Perry was named First Star and Kyle Weber was named the Third Star of the Game.
After an off day on Friday, the Clippers and Bulldogs met again on Saturday at Frank Crane Arena. Nanaimo got off to a great start thanks to a power play goal from Victor Newell in the first. However, Newell’s goal would be the only one for the Clippers as the Bulldogs would take this game 5-1. Carson Schell was named the Second Star of the Game.
Game 5 was played on Monday, March 15 at Weyerhaeuser Arena. Teal Burns and Colton Cyr scored goals in the first period to knot a 2-2 tie. However, Alberni Valley would take over the rest of the game. Despite goals from Brayden Jaw in the second and Cody Bremner in the third, the Bulldogs won this one 7-4.
But it’s not over for our WFG-sponsored hockey team. Game six will be played on Tuesday, March 16 at Frank Crane Arena, and should Game Seven be necessary (and we certainly hope so), it’ll be played Wednesday in Alberni Valley. GO CLIPPERS!