The Quality Foods Oceanside Generals squandered a 2-0 lead in the opening frame and ended up narrowly losing 4-3 to the Peninsula Panthers on the road on Monday, Nov. 20.
It was the second loss in a row for the Generals, who on Nov. 18, after a gallant fight at home, were edged by the Nanaimo Buccaneers, one of the top teams in the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League, 4-2.
Against the Panthers, the Generals quickly grabbed the lead at 1:34 on Max Creighton’s goal. They made it 2-0 at 13:23, on a score by Braeden Young.
The Generals lost control of the game when the Panthers scored twice in the second period, including a short-handed goal that tied it up. Then in the third, undisciplined play gave the Panthers a power-play opportunity that they took advantage of to go up 3-2. Things went downhill for the Generals when the Panthers netted another, shorthanded goal. The Generals were able to salvage a goal by Noah Goyer at 17:55 to provide the final margin.
The Generals were outshot by the Panthers 33-20.
In their match against the Buccaneers on Saturday, the Generals were in contention but crucial lapses led to their demise.
“I am not disappointed with the effort,” said head coach Jesse Hammill.
“That was a 50-minute hockey game. We played well. Yeah, they had sustained pressure and they had opportunities but I think we played good out here. The loss is disappointing but you gotta love the effort.”
The Buccaneers opened the scoring halfway through the first period but, three minutes later, Landon Dziadyk was able to tie it up when he beat Bucs goalie Blake Wood through the five hole. Two minutes later, Luc Wilson, who scored the first goal for the Bucs, made it 2-1 with his second marker of the night.
Down by just a goal at the end of the first was good for the Generals but disaster struck early in the second period due to remnants of water still on the ice. It happened again in the third.
“The puck sticks, maybe because it’s early in the period and maybe water, whatever like that, and the D-man overskates it,” said Hammill. “If you watch the Canucks games, that happens, multi times, over and over again. That’s what I am trying to keep in perspective. Unfortunately, they [Buccaneers] capitalized on their chances.”
The Generals were able to notch a late goal to make it 4-2, scored by Greyson Weme, for his team-leading ninth goal of the season.
Shots on goal were close, with the Generals finishing with a slight edge 33-32. The Generals were 0-for-3 on the power play. Their record stands at 7-13-1.
Generals goalie Jacob Sweet had a strong outing between the pipes, recording 29 saves, some of which prevented Oceanside from falling further behind.
The Generals were scheduled to face the Buccaneers again Nov. 22 at Oceanside Place, after The NEWS went to press. The Gens are 0-4 against the Bucs this year.
The next game for the Generals will be against Saanich Braves, Nov. 24, at George Pearkes Arena, at 6:30 p.m.
The Generals are back home Saturday, Nov. 25, to host the Peninsula Panthers at 7 p.m.