Stamps comeback ices Demons

The Kitimat Ice Demons capped their 2011 CIHL play-off championships by being edged by one goal in a 7-6 game three goal-fest at Williams Lake Sunday, February 27.

The Kitimat Ice Demons capped their 2011 CIHL play-off championships by being edged by one goal in a 7-6 game three goal-fest at Williams Lake Sunday, February 27.

The Stampeders earned their second CIHL championship in succession (over the Ice Demons) as they surged back from a 6-3 deficit at the 12 minute mark of the second period.

They scored three more times to end the period tied 6-6 with the Demons, who had taken a 5-2 lead into the second.

But the Stampeders still had one goal in them in the third, scored by Jeff Gagnon, and they  defended that lead stubbornly for the last nine minutes of the game.

Once again, the Ice Demons will look on this one as a championship they let slip away and won’t rely on the excuse of being short the 15 playoff points represented by two key absent players, sniper Blaine Markwart and MVP defenseman Jeff Mildenberger, both of whom were unable to make the trip to Williams Lake for the last two games.

On Saturday, the Ice Demons found a familiar foe, goaltender Justin Foote, the Stamps last line of defense, who again came up with a stellar game – making 36 saves on 39 shots as the Demons lost game two 5-3 in a hard-fought affair, that saw two power play goals by Williams Lake, as the difference in the game.

Demons started with a bang putting their first shot behind Foote at the 54 second mark of the first period, Daniel Mayer putting Wade Masch’s pass in the net.

Wilfred Robbins (Francis Johnson) got that one back two and a half minutes later, then Masch and Mayer reversed roles with Masch scoring just three and a half minutes after that to restore the one goal lead for the Demons as the teams went end to end.

The rest of period one belonged to the Stampeders as they took advantage of a hooking call on Jeremy Brady to beat Jamie Moran on the power play, a goal scored by Jason Wright (Aaron Zurak, Brent MacIsaac), then went ahead on a five-on-five goal by Paul Girodat, unassisted, to go into the second period with a 4-2 lead.

The Ice Demons came out with a full-court press in the second but Francis Johnson and Wilf Robbins put a dent in that just two minutes in, with Johnson scoring.

Demons pummelled the Williams Lake net but could not put a goal on the board during that offence.

In the third, with just four minutes gone, Williams Lake got back on the power play with Ian Coleman in the box for a weak unsportsmanlike conduct call, probably one of only a couple of ref calls that had an impact on the result.

Robbins scored on the power play, assisted by Zurak and Johnson as the Stamps performed their power play passing magic.

With nine minutes gone Nick Markowski snagged a puck, carried it in alone, and parked it behind Foote, unassisted.

But it was not enough as Foote recovered well and the defence blocked lots of shots to survive 5-3, erasing the Demons’ advantage from their 7-4 win on home ice a week earlier.

With all the marbles on the line Sunday afternoon things did not look good for the Stampeders in a goal-filled first period, as the Demons came out strongly to take a 5-2 lead on goals by Nick Markowski (Kory Finn), Ian Coleman (Craig Hewitson, Terry Whelan) Derek Wakita (Markowski, Finn), Wakita (unassisted) and Steve Venman (Masch).

The Stamps goals were scored by Aaron Zurak (Stu Sasges) and Paul Girodat (Jeff Gagnon).

What took place in the locker rooms at the end of that period is unknown, but in the second it was Williams Lake that came on strong, with Francis Johnson (Gilbert Robin) eating into the Demons lead, but that was restored by Terry Whelan (Coleman).

What happened next was that Williams Lake came off the face-off fast, getting that goal back on a score by Paul Girodat (Curtis Gassoff, Jeff Gagnon) at 7.26, just 13 seconds after Whelan had scored.

That was the goal that seemed to turn the momentum as the Stampeders pressed and drew to within one two minutes later on a goal by Stu Sasges (Jason Wright, Curtis Gassoff) and drew to an unlikely 6-6 tie midway through the period as Francis Johnson again scored on Jamie Moran, as the Demons juggled lines trying to staunch the attack.

They did, and that was the last goal of the period, even with nine minutes left.

Into the third the teams went end to end for 10 minutes as both teams seemed to sense that despite the 12 goals in the game so far, the next one might be the winner.

That’s how it turned out and Jeff Gagnon was the hero at 10.33  (Paul Girodat, Curtis Gassoff) and from then on it was more “game on” as the Ice Demons battled to get back on even terms and Justin Foote and the Stampeders were reckless with their bodies in goal and on defence to protect the lead.

It had to end as the seconds ticked down and the score didn’t change and the 400 fans sounded like a lot more at the final whistle as the Stampeders made Gagnon’s lead goal stand up for the win and the Rio Tinto Alcan CIHL championship trophy.

It was a bitter pill for the Demons, downed for the second time in two seasons in the final game by the Stampeders – even more bitter to hear Justin Foote’s name deservedly called for playoff MVP.

The same two teams were to meet last night in Prince Rupert to start the round robin at the Coy Cup.

This will be another hard-fought game. The Stamps will likely add a player or two to their roster, and the Demons can expect a full line up with Mildenberger and Markwart back in the rotation, along with two add-ons, big Kyle Madsen and former Kitimat skater, Dougie Higginson.

This will be a terrific game.


Just Posted

Map of the road work that will be completed this summer. The streets highlighted in red are what the district planned on completing before additional funding, and the streets highlighted in orange is the road works that will be done with the additional funding. (District of Kitimat photo)
$1.1 million allocated for road work this year in Kitimat

Kitimat council has added $470,000 for more work by deferring four other projects.

Hirsch Creek Golf Course Volunteer, Augie Penner, talking about how he continues the tradition, set by Joe Atamchuck, to catch and release fry that keep spawning at the course. (Jacob Lubberts photo)
VIDEO: Kitimat golf course volunteers making moves for the fishlings

During the highwater season, salmon are known to lay their eggs in the ponds at the golf course

Ocean Wise’s cetacean photogrammetry research program uses aerial images collected by boat-launched drones to measure the body condition of whales. (Ocean Wise Marine Mammal License MML-18 photo)
LNG Canada commits $750K to whale research, conservation initiative

Ocean Wise education team will work alongside educational and Indigenous leaders in the area

The Sam Lindsay Aquatic Centre will be closed from June 28 until September 13 for annual facility maintenance as well as teach pool and decking repairs. (Black Press photo)
Sam Lindsay Aquatic Centre closed: June 28 – September 13

The aquatic centre will be closed for annual facility maintenance

Shoes are being left at the viewpoint on Haisla Blvd in response to the 215 bodies discovered at the Kamloops Residential School. (Jacob Lubberts photo)
Haisla Nation responds to 215 Indigenous children found buried at the site of Kamloops Indian Residential School

“Many Haisla children were sent far away, to places such as Port Alberni, and to Coqualeetza”

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Athena and Venus, ready to ride. (Zoe Ducklow - Sooke News Mirror)
Goggling double-dog motorcycle sidecar brings smiles to B.C. commuters

Athena and Venus are all teeth and smiles from their Harley-Davidson sidecar

Kimberly Bussiere and other laid-off employees of Casino Nanaimo have launched a class-action lawsuit against the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
B.C. casino workers laid off during pandemic launch class-action lawsuit

Notice of civil claim filed in Supreme Court of B.C. in Nanaimo against Great Canadian Gaming

A Photo from Sept. 2020, when First Nations and wild salmon advocates took to the streets in Campbell River to protest against open-pen fish farms in B.C.’s waters. On Dec. 17, federal fisheries minister Bernadette Jordan announced her decision to phase out 19 fish farms from Discovery Islands. Cermaq’s application to extend leases and transfer smolts was denied. (Marc Kitteringham/Campbell River Mirror)
Feds deny B.C.’s Discovery Island fish farm application to restock

Transfer of 1.5 million juvenile salmon, licence extension denied as farms phased out

John Kromhoff with some of the many birthday cards he received from ‘pretty near every place in the world’ after the family of the Langley centenarian let it be known that he wasn’t expecting many cards for his 100th birthday. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Cards from all over the world flood in for B.C. man’s 100th birthday

An online invitation by his family produced a flood of cards to mark his 100th birthday

FILE – Nurse Iciar Bercian prepares a shot at a vaccine clinic for the homeless in Calgary, Alta., Wednesday, June 2, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
B.C. scientists to study effectiveness of COVID vaccines in people with HIV

People living with HIV often require higher doses of other vaccines

A 50-year-old woman lost control of her vehicle Tuesday, June 15, crashing through a West Vancouver school fence that surrounds playing children. (West Vancouver Police)
Driver ticketed for speeding near B.C. school crashes into playground fence days later

‘It’s an absolute miracle that nobody was injured,’ says Const. Kevin Goodmurphy

Dr. Réka Gustafson, who is British Columbia’s deputy provincial health officer, speaks during a news conference in Vancouver on April 8, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. public health officials prepare to manage COVID-19 differently in the future

Flu-like? Health officials anticipate shift from pandemic to communicable disease control strategies

Most Read