Dante De Caria
Victoria, BC – The Powell River Kings (6-2) defeated the Victoria Grizzles (2-4) 3-1 at the Q Centre on Saturday night.
Matteo Paler-Chow allowed one goal on 31 shots, and made 10 saves in third period alone – helping the Kings snap their two game losing-streak.
“Once we got up by two, we thought it was going to be a walk in the park,” said Powell River Kings assistant coach Brock Sawyer. “He’s the ninja, he battled all night and gave us an opportunity to win. We don’t win that game without him.”
Reilly Moran opened the scoring for the Kings late in the first period. Moran came streaking down the left wing on a two-on-one, and fired the puck bar-down for his fourth goal this season. Then early in the second, Michael Abgrall tapped in his third goal this season, as the Kings took a 2-0 lead.
Paler-Chow was minutes away from his third career shutout, but the Grizzles won a battle in the Kings left corner and Stephen Konroyd centered the puck in front to an open James Davenport, who beat Paler-Chow blocker side.
“We broke down defensively,” added Sawyer. “We made a lot of turnovers and careless pucks that we were just heading to them. Everything they got, we gave to them. We have a bit of learning to do so we don’t make those mistakes again and we can lock down a two goal lead.”
The Powell River Kings improve to 2-2 on their nine game road trip. The Kings were outshot 31-23 last night, and have now been outshot in all four games on their road trip. Sawyer said that it is a bit concerning.
“It’s not the way you want to play on the road, but it’s a huge two points on the road. We need to do a better job of managing pucks, making sure we get pucks in deep and get them out of our blue line. We have some things to address and that our older players need to be our better players.”
The Kings are now second in the Island Division with 12-points, and just two points back of the Cowichan Valley Capitals who won last night.
A win on Sunday against the Naniamo Clippers would tie the Capitals for first. Puck drop is at 2:00 p.m., inside the Frank Crane Arena. You can catch all the action on 95.7 Coast FM and Hockey TV.