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Close call costs Powell River Kings much-needed win

Team comes away from weekend with one victory, one loss and one tie
NO SCORE: Referees took back what would have been defender Andy Steven’s winning goal in overtime for Powell River Kings. Alicia Baas photo

A disallowed goal by Powell River Kings defender Andy Stevens in the second overtime period against Salmon Arm Silverbacks resulted in a 3-3 tie in BC Hockey League action on January 12 at Hap Parker Arena.

Kings came away with one point when a win was desperately needed to the lift the team out of what coach Kent Lewis said is a “funk that has been going on a long time.”

After coming back to tie the game with Ben Berard’s 19th goal of the season in the final minute of the third period, Stevens had the Salmon Arm goaltender completely out of position in the second overtime while on a power play. Stevens moved in from his point position, skated around everyone and appeared to slip the puck behind the goalie and just over the goal line.

The referee initially called it a goal but after a centre-ice discussion with other officials, the call was reversed.

“I saw it in from where I was,” said Lewis. “The only part that upset me a little bit was just the inaccuracy of how it all went down. When the referee signals it, it's frustrating.”

From the players perspective, the puck was across the goal line.

“Everyone I talked to said it went in and I thought for sure it went in,” said forward Hunter Findlater, who was on the bench when Stevens appeared to score.

Looking back, Lewis said nobody can say for sure if the puck was in.

After the disappointment, Kings finished the weekend with two road games against Island Division rivals. On January 13, the team beat Nanaimo Clippers 5-3, followed by a 6-2 loss to Victoria Grizzlies the following afternoon.

“I thought we were a lot better on Saturday,” said Lewis, “and then Sunday we had a good start, a couple of sloppy goals against and the wheels fell off.”

With the win, loss and tie, Kings are alone in second place in the division, three points back of the Grizzlies and one point ahead of the Clippers.

Kings top three scorers had strong games. Forward Jonny Evans came away from the weekend with one goal and five assists. Leading scoring Ben Berard, who is having a breakout sophomore season, had a goal and four assists and hit the 50-point plateau midway through the season.

Berard is the seventh leading scorer in the BCHL. Carter Turnbull also had five points with three goals and two assists.

Goaltender Mitch Adamyk played all three games for the Kings, who face another three-game road trip this weekend before returning home to play Penticton Vees on Friday, January 26.