The Cougars take a commanding 3-1 lead in Championship Series

The Campbell River Storm came out charging at the start of the first period. They applied pressure in the Cougars zone but at the 2:46 mark it was Tyler Vanuden who rang a shot off the Campbell River Storm post. He was able to beat Storm starter Jaden Little but not the iron. The game flowed back and forth through the first. At 6:19 Cougar Matt Clark took a 2 minute slew footing penalty and the Cougars were able to kill it off. At 14:23 the Storm’s Keegan Abbott took a hooking penalty and the Cougars PP which is in fire took no time to strike. Tyler Vanuden passed the puck from the half boards to Booker Chacalias at the side of the net. Booker slid the puck to the top of the slot where Mateo Albinati reached out and flipped the puck blocker side for the first goal of the game on the PP at 14:35. The game seesawed until the end of the period with the Storm outshooting the Cougars 7-6.

The second period saw a rash of penalties with the Cougars getting 5 power plays to the Storms 2. The frustration of not being able to get a puck past Owen Sikkes started to show as the Storm started to lose a bit of discipline and the Cougars made them pay. Josh Martin took a point shot that was stopped by Little. The rebound went to Tyler Vanuden at the side of the net who spied Albinati in front and slid him the puck to fire in his second goal of the game at 7:06 of the second. Soon after the goal Damon Porter took a charging penalty and it was Kevan McBean with a bullet of a slap shot. He took a feed from Ryan Okino and the power play goal chased Little from the net. Aaron de Kok finished the game for the Storm. There were a few more penalties but no more scoring in the period.

The third was more of the same. 6 Penalties to the Storm and 2 to the Cougars. Again the Storm was showing their frustration as try as they might Owen Sikkes was not allowing any rebounds so no second chances. There was a 3 on 1 break for the Storm and Sikkes shut them down. Goals in the period were at 4:32 when Albinati completed his hat-trick from Grady Birk. Then at 7:29 it was Nathan Ingram with his first goal and first point of the playoffs with a slap shot from the point that beat de Kok. Assisting were Matt Clark and Jaden McNulty.

The Storm haven’t scored in the past 2 games but it wasn’t for lack of chances. Owen Sikkes has upped his game and is playing like a man possessed.

The Player of the game for the Storm was Ante Mustapic and Sikkes for the Cougars.

Next game is Tuesday at the Rod Brind’Amour Arena up in Campbell River at 7:30pm.

Should there be a game 6 it will be at the Arch on Thursday at 7:00 and game 7 is scheduled for Friday in Campbell River at 7:30.

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