They came up big when it mattered the most and the Save-On-Foods Oceanside Generals were rewarded with the eighth and final playoff spot after defeating the Peninsula Panthers 5-2 on Monday night.
Starting goaltender David Anderson stood his ground for the Generals as he turned aside 54 of 56 shots on the night, including stopping all 25 shots on goal in the third period as the Panthers poured it on in a last ditch effort to come back.
“Everyone was up and ready to go from the start,” head coach Rob Gaudreault said. “They played a full 60 minute game and I think that seeing what they’re capable of doing when they can do that, we’re able to play a game like that no problem.”
Travis Flug continued his impressive play as of late (3 goals in his last 2 games), opening the scoring for the Generals with a power play marker just five minutes into the first period.
The Gens would go on to strike one more time on the power play as Chase Gaudreault, returning to game action for the first time since Jan. 31, gave the Generals a 4-2 lead late in the second period.
Logan Savard (1 goal, 1 assist) and Keagan Fedorko rounded out the scoring for the Generals.
“Our special teams played very well on Monday night,” Gaudreault said. “We were able to capitalize on two of the four chances we had on the power play and we shut Peninsula down when we were on the penalty kill. Both special teams worked very well and it was very good to see.”
This also marked the first time this season that the Generals won back-to-back games away from Oceanside Place, after just winning their first game on the road this season against the Comox Valley Glacier Kings on February 9th.
The timing couldn’t be better for the Generals.
“It took a while but we’ve won two in a row on the road now,” Gaudreault said. “We just need to keep having that hard work and effort, working together as a team. We have to make sure that we stick to our game plan, especially against Campbell River because they’re a deep team. If we can stick to our game plan and execute, we should have similar results on the road like our last two games.”
Game one (score not available at press time) took place last night, game two will take place Friday night, a 7:30 p.m. start like all games in the series, in Campbell River.
You can catch all the action while the Gens are on the road on 88.5 The Beach with Dominic Abassi. Games three (Saturday, Feb. 21) and four (Tuesday, Feb. 24) are back at Oceanside Place, the first playoff games since 2012-2013 (7:30 p.m. both games).
Game five, if necessary, will be back in Campbell River on Feb. 27, game six at Oceanside Place on Feb. 28 and game seven, if the series goes the distance, will take place at the Rod Brind’Amour Arena on March 2, 7:30 p.m. start time.