The Revelstoke Grizzlies took seven out of a possible eight points during a four-game home stand last week.
Revelstoke defeated the North Okanagan Knights 9-3 on Wednesday, beat the Kelowna Chiefs 5-4 in overtime on Friday, lost 2-1 in overtime to the Sicamous Eagles on Saturday night and completed the week with a 15-2 thrashing of the Chase Heat on Sunday.
Wednesday’s game against the Knights was the biggest one of the week, with the Grizzlies having fallen behind their division rivals in the standings the previous weekend.
“For us it was a game seven in a best of seven series that we felt we needed to win if we wanted to push for first or second place in this division,” said coach Randy Quakenbush.
The team came out strong, with Kyle Schwartz scoring 91 seconds into the game. After the Knights tied it 22 seconds later, Revelstoke responded with three goals before the period was out. They made it 7-1 before the Knights scored again.
The final score was 9-3, with Michael Roberts being named the first star for his three point performance. Goaltender Ethan Wood made 39 saves for the win.
On Friday, the Grizzlies welcomed the Kelowna Chiefs to the Forum. Revelstoke was forced to play with a short bench, with four players out of the lineup due to injuries and call-ups to Junior A. Schwartz scored twice in the first period to give Revelstoke a 2-0 lead but Kelowna was able to tie it up early in the third period.
Marc Letourneau scored to give Revelstoke a 3-2 lead but Kelowna responded with two goals, leading Austin Donaldson to salvage the game with a short handed goal with a little more than two minutes to go. That set up Ty Sanford, who scored the game winner only 34 seconds into overtime.
The Grizzlies were back at it on Saturday, this time against the Sicamous Eagles. The game was a disjointed affair that the Eagles won in the second overtime after the Revelstoke goalie Conrad MacMillan fumbled a pass, leaving Brendon Wilde with a wide open net and Sicamous with a 2-1 win.
“I tried to prepare our guys for that game yesterday but the adrenalin from the night before, where it was such an emotional game … Quite often, after that kind of high, you’ll have a sag or a low and I think that’s what it was,” said Quakenbush.
Revelstoke closed out the week with a 15-2 blowout of the Chase Heat. The offense was lead by the fourth line, with TJ Christensen recording a hat-trick, Riley Creighton scoring twice and Kent Hendrickson adding a goal and an assist.
“They provide a lot of energy, they’re popular with their teammates because of the physical intensity they bring every day,” said Quakenbush. “This game they saw quite a few more minutes and they capitalized on that.”
Cole Sanford also had a hat-trick in the win. Despite the lopsided score, Quakenbush said he hated the bad habits the team picked up.
“The system started to break down, players tried to do things individually because they saw an opportunity for points,” he said.
On the injury front, defenseman Braden Seyl is out for eight weeks with a torn MCL, while several other players are battling nagging injuries, Quakenbush said.
This weekend the Grizzlies take on the Creston Thunder Cats on Friday and the Osoyoos Coyotes on Saturday. Both games are at the Revelstoke Forum.