NORTH SAANICH — The Peninsula Panthers pasted the Westshore Wolves 5-2 at the Q Centre last Wednesday evening but then dropped a tight 2-0 affair to the visiting Victoria Cougars at home at the Panorama Recreation Centre last Friday night. The Club played well in both games and could have come out with the all important four points, but a split is what was in the cards.
“We really played hard in both games,” said team General Manager Pete Zubersky. “Our guys are starting to compete and I love seeing it develop. We are really excited where we are at this point in the season and with 13 games left, it’s time we turned it up a notch or two higher. The Club is starting to get great starting goaltending from Chris Akerman and that is a key. We need to put up a string of W’s and that will put us in great shape when the playoffs come around in five weeks.”
Ten Panthers travelled up to Campbell River on Sunday afternoon to take part in the VIJHL Prospects Game. Akerman, Josh Lingard, Riley Braun, Marshall Brown, Tanner Wort, Matt Lawrence, Shota Yamamoto, Thomas Spink and Skyler Diamond-Burchuk all earned a berth on the South Division team as 50 per cent of the roster were “Cats” from the Peninsula.
The game featured players who were 16 – 18 years of age and this is a sweet spot for the local Junior Club. The game turned out to be a fast-paced and rugged affair with the North Division winning 3-2 deep into overtime. The South had held a 2-0 lead going into the final frame however two quick goals by the North tied the game at 2-2 and forced the extra stanza.
“It did not matter who won the game,” quipped Zubersky. “What mattered most was how hard all ten of our guys played. I think they learned a lot about themselves and this experience will bode well for the team for the rest of the regular season and into the playoffs.”
The Panthers travel to Victoria to take on the Cougars on Thursday evening before returning home on Friday night when they will welcome the Westshore Wolves into the den. The puck will drop at 7:30 p.m. and a large crowd is expected.
— Peninsula Panthers