The Victoria Grizzlies dropped a pair of away games over the weekend as they faced off against the Vernon Vipers on Saturday (Dec. 2) and the Coquitlam Express on Sunday ( Dec. 3). The losses drop the Grizzlies to third place in the British Columbia Hockey League Junior A Division.
“It was a matter of a lot of travel and still dealing with some injuries, plus when we got to Coquitlan we came up on a real hot goalie that night,” said head coach Craig Didmon.
“We had our chances but it just didn’t go our way.”
On Saturday the Grizzlies went down by three goals with the Vipers’ Mitch Andres finding the net in the first period and Niko Karamanis and Jagger Williamson adding to the total in the second.
The Grizzlies’ single goal by Justin Michaelin saw the team come up short in a 3-1 loss.
On Sunday the picture was even more bleak as Victoria’s T.J. Friedman’s early goal was met by Coquitlan’s Eric Linell’s goal in the first period.
Michaelin scored early in the second but two Express goals by Eric Linell and Christian Sanda set the stage for the Coquitlan win. The Express continued to dominate in the third period with goals from Jordan Schulting, Alex Ambrosio, and Colby Pederson cementing the lead and sending the Grizzlies home with a 6-2 loss.
The Grizzlies were scheduled to play another away game on Wednesday, Dec. 6 (after the Gazette’s press deadline), against Cowichan Valley.
But they’re back in The Q Centre this weekend with games on Dec. 9 and 10 against the Nanaimo Clippers and the Powell River Kings.
“We’re going in positive and we’re going to deliver a good show and hopefully manage to pull out some wins,” Didmon said.
Beyond the action on the ice, which gets underway at 7 p.m. on Saturday and 1 p.m. on Sunday, the Grizzlies are offering a chance for fans to help out those less fortunate in the community.
Saturday’s game features a chance for fans to bring in teddy bears (in a plastic bag) to throw on the ice when the Grizzlies score their first goal of the game. If you don’t have a bear to toss, a selection of bears will be available for purchase for $10 at the Santas Anonymous table in the lobby of the arena. Collected bears (and the funds raised) will be going to Santas Anonymous. The team is also accepting any new, unwrapped toys for Santas Anonymous, which can be dropped off at The Q Centre.
But that’s not all, the team is also accepting new or gently used men’s clothing – particularly socks – which will be donated to Our Place.
The Grizzlies have two more home games scheduled for December, facing off against the Cowichan Valley Capitals on Dec. 15 and the Prince George Spruce Kings on Dec. 16.
All games take place at 7 p.m. and tickets are available at victoriagrizzlies.com or at the door.