The Nanaimo Buccaneers are off to a solid start in the first month of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL). The team came from behind with a 6-3 win over the Peninsula Panthers on September 19 in North Saanich, which moved Nanaimo to 4-1-0-1 in the young season.
Nanaimo trailed 3-2 going into the third period against the Panthers. But at 8:54, David Osbourne tied the game for Nanaimo at 3-3. Later in the third period, the Buccaneers took the lead 4-3 on a goal by Carter Turnbull, his second goal in as many games. Just a minute later, Nolan Richardson scored a powerplay goal to put the Buccaneers up 5-3. Hobin Zinck added an empty netter for Nanaimo, who won by a final of 6-3.
The Buccaneers’ last home game was against the Campbell River Storm on September 18. The game was an early season battle for first place, as the two teams were separated by just one point atop the Island’s North Division. Nanaimo got off to a quick start at home, as Trent Ball opened the scoring just 44 seconds into the game, giving the Buccaneers an early 1-0 lead. Gage Colpron and James Severs both tallied for the Storm before the end of the first period, giving Campbell River a 2-1 lead after the first period. Early in the second period, Christian Brandt fired a shot that slipped through Nanaimo goalie Greg Maggio, increasing the Storm lead to 3-1. Carter Turnbull’s first career goal was early in the third period, and got Nanaimo back to within one, but that was as close as Nanaimo could get. The Storm ended with an empty netter to win the game by a final score of 4-2. With the win, the Storm remained undefeated for the season and took a 3-point lead over Nanaimo for first place in the division.
The previous weekend, the Buccaneers picked up 5 out of a possible 6 points against Kerry Park, Campbell River, and Comox Valley. First, the Buccaneers picked up a dramatic 3-2 home victory at Kerry Park on September 11. Nanaimo picked up a point in a 3-2 overtime loss to Campbell River the next night before closing out their weekend with a 2-1 victory over the Comox Valley Glacier Kings on Saturday, September 13.
The Buccaneers currently sit in second place in the VIJHL’s North Division. The Bucs are 3-points ahead of first place Campbell River but have a 5 point lead over the third place Comox Glacier Kings.
The Buccaneers’ next home games are Thursday, September 25 against the Saanich Braves, and October 2 against the West Shore Wolves. Puck drop for both games is at 7:15pm. All Nanaimo Buccaneers games are played at the Nanaimo Ice Centre below campus. Student tickets for the games are only $8.
Standings as of publication: