Powell River Kings recently lost two of three games on a tough weekend road trip. Head coach Kent Lewis said he was still positive, despite the two defeats, because his team held three strong opponents to only five goals and returned home still in first place in BC Hockey League Island Division standings.
In the first of the away games on October 13, Kings won handily 5-1 over Chilliwack Chiefs. Kings goals were scored by Carter Turnbull, Ethan Kimball, Jonny Evans, Kyle Kawamura and Hunter Findlater.
Lewis said all teams are going to have a game plan to shut down the Kings' high-scoring offence, which is what happened against the tough Interior Division teams.
Vernon Vipers lead the BCHL standings and beat the Kings 2-0 on October 14. It was the first time Powell River has been shut out in 12 games this season.
In two meetings so far in 2017/2018, Kings and Vipers have one win each in tightly fought contests.
Kings faced Trail Smoke Eaters on October 15 before heading home and gave up a power play goal in the last minute of the play to fall 2-1. Findlater scored the lone goal.
While Lewis said his team showed signs it can play good defense on the trip, the power play did not click. In 21 opportunities in the three games, Kings scored only one goal against the Chiefs.
Lewis said goaltending was a huge positive for the team during the road trip. Mitch Adamyk allowed only three goals in two starts against the Chiefs and Vipers.
Adamyk is one of the top five goaltenders in the league with a 1.73 goals-against-average in eight games played. Fellow goaltender Mateo Paler-Chow played in the loss to the Smoke Eaters.
Born and raised in Powell River, Findlater marked a milestone on the road by playing his 200th career BCHL game, including regular season and playoffs, all with his hometown team. Findlater is playing out his final year of Junior A eligibility.
“Hunter is a kid who shows up to work all the time,” said Lewis. “He's a great teammate and a very loyal kid. He's a quiet leader. He goes about his game the right way and plays hard, and he’s the example you need.”
Findlater’s celebration was soured by the Kings' loss to the Vipers.
Kings have eight wins and three losses in 12 games this season, for 17 points, three ahead of Victoria Grizzlies in Island Division standings.
Kings' remaining four games in October take place at home, starting with Prince George on Friday, October 20.