The Westshore Wolves’ playoff run died in dramatic fashion last week with a 2-1 double-overtime loss in Game 6 to the Peninsula Panthers.
It was a seesaw series from start to finish, with the Panthers taking the first two games by scores of 3-0 and 6-4, before the Wolves struck back with 3-1 and 3-2 wins.
Peninsula prevailed in Game 5 with a score of 6-5, setting the stage for the March 2 nail biter before about 1,000 fans at The Q Centre in Colwood.
Colorado native Branden Tanguay scored the only goal for the Wolves before Spencer Loverock’s overtime goal clinched the series for Peninsula.
The Panthers now move on to the next round with games going March 8 and 11 against the Victoria Cougars.
Wolves owner and general manager Ken Carson said it was a hard-fought series between the two teams, that finished the regular season only one point apart in Vancouver Island Junior hockey League standings.
Carson said expectations weren’t high for the team going into the season, in what he termed as a rebuilding phase, because they had to replace 70 per cent of the players from last season.
“We finished in the middle of the pack, which is what we anticipated going into the season,” Carson said.
“Our goal and mission is to develop younger skilled players, so I think the season was successful in that regard and we’re on the right track.”
He noted, “we have three players moving on to the British Columbia Junior Hockey League, and another to the Western Hockey League.”
The Wolves will also lose Jesse Nixon and Adam Page as both players are aging out, so there are lots of openings for next season, Carson added.
Goalie Leighton Williams earned the Bob Saunders Community Leadership Award for his efforts on and off the ice.
The team will be conducting its annual spring camp April 8 to 10 at The Q Centre.
For more information go to westshorewolves.ca.