The Prince Rupert Rampage came to Kitimat for the opening game of the 2011-12 season with a short bench – and could do very little to deter the Demons as they were overwhelmed 11-2 as the younger Ice Demons skaters put on a decent show for just over 550 fans at Tamitik.
The Rampage, the team which won the Western Division last season, were without many of their veteran players and it showed as the Ice Demons used the big arena to their advantage.
Luckily for the the Rampage it was early and the Demons, with juggled lines and some new faces in the line-up were certainly not at their best.
Dan Lorette, in the Rampage net, did his best, but with a tiring defence, his team fell behind 4-0 in the free-wheeling first period, that saw Kitimat goals from Wade Masch (Jacob Pereira), just three minutes in, Kory Finn (Masch and Jeff Baker) 10 minutes later, Derek Wakita, power play (Terry Whelan, Dave Venman) two minutes after that and Jonnie Aiken (Ian Coleman) a minute after that.
Although for the most part the Demons had their way, Jamie Moran was at his best, kicking out a lot of long shots and then brilliant close in as the Rampage might easily have been on the board from defensive turnovers.
Shots in the period were 14-8 for Kitimat. Each team took two minor penalties.
The second period was much the sam, with the Ice Demons adding goals from Blaine Markwart, (Jeff Mildenberger, Jeff Baker), and Jeff Mildenberger (Wade Masch) while the Rampage tried to find a means to stop the constant up-ice rushes.
It was not a matter of effort, just inexperience among the younger line-up, which did its best to stem the tide.
Things fell apart a bit more for the Rampage in the third as Kitimat scored just 33 seconds in on a goal by Brandon Wakita (Derek Wakita, Terry Whelan) and to make matters worse the next three Kitimat shots also beat Dan Lorette as Kitimat made the score 10-0 within four minutes with the other goals coming from Jonnie Aiken at 1.51, (Scott McGregor, Ian Coleman), Terry Whelan, power-play, at 3.16 (Derek and Brandon Wakita) and Wade Masch again (Blaine Markwart, Dave Venman) at 4.16.
The Rampage slid in two goals in the third, one shorthanded by Jared Meers, at 9.28 and an unassisted goal by defenseman Jean-Luc Fournier on a Demons end turnover.
Dan Lorette turned the goal-tending over to Tremain Kurka who let in the Demons’ last goal at 12.55 by Scott McGregor (Jeff Mildenberger, Ian Coleman) as the Demons, with the score already run up did not press in the late stages.
Prince Rupert will have to dig a little deeper to regain the form it showed last season when pipped in the playoff semi-finals by Kitimat.
Total shots in the game were 37-22 for Kitimat and Rupert had eight minor penalties against five.