The Powell Kings were looking for another bounce-back performance after a disappointing loss in game four of the Island Division Final against the Victoria Grizzlies. Led by Brian Wilson’s 34 save shutout, the Kings did just that with a 3-0 win to take a 3-2 series lead.
Just 11 seconds into the game Kyle Betts got the Kings on the board. With the puck rolling down the left wing, Betts wound up for a slap shot and beat Matthew Galajda glove side for his fourth of the playoffs.
Ben Berard had an excellent chance to extend the Kings lead while on the power play. He walked out from the goal line on his forehand and cut across the crease. The puck rolled off his stick as he had Galajda down on his stomach.
Keyvan Mokhitari had an equally good chance for Victoria on the power play; his shot from the right circle hit the side of the net after a cross-ice pass and Wilson out of position.
The Kings had a number of chances in the second period as well. Cam Donaldson was robbed on a one timer from the left circle after Evans fed him the puck, but Galajda slid across and got it with his right pad.
On a bit of a weird sequence while shorthanded, the Kings had another good chance. Jake Kohlhauser’s clearing attempt hit Jonny Evans in the face and he slowly made his way to the bench for repairs.
For a few seconds nobody came on to the ice to replace him, so the Kings had just three players in the defensive zone. Curtis McCarrick realized and hopped over the boards, and on his way back to the defensive zone he got a pass and carried the puck towards Galajda on a partial break but was stopped by the Victoria goaltender.
In the third period the Kings would finally solve Galajda again. After Carter Turnbull had a good chance while flying down the wing, Donaldson had the puck at the left circle on the ensuing possession.
Donaldson centred for Evans who wristed a shot past Galajda’s glove from the slot for his sixth of the playoffs to make it 2-0.
A little over four minutes later, Liam Lawson carried the puck down the left wing into the Victoria zone before cutting to the net. His jam play was stopped, but McCarrick was ready and waiting for the rebound, shovelling it past Galajda to make it 3-0.
With the win the Kings have a chance to advance to the third round for the first time since 2012 Saturday night. Powell River is 3-0-1 on home ice in the post season, the lone blemish being game four’s overtime loss.