The Revelstoke Grizzlies are heading to the Okanagan/Shuswap Conference Finals after beating the 100 Mile House Wranglers 4-1 in Game 7 at home.
Revelstoke Head Coach Ryan Parent called it a “long, hard series” and the Grizzlies are happy to be moving to the next round.
“We were more than ecstatic to close out that series,” he said.
The Grizzlies opened scoring with under three minutes to go in the first period.
Ryan Pereverzoff shook off the team’s early penalties to score the team’s first goal on a power play with 2:39 to go in the first period.
In the second period, with Sho Takai in the box for interference, the Wranglers tied things up with a power play goal of their own.
Revelstoke’s David Lenzin scored the team’s second goal and Jordan Robertson got the team’s third goal, finding space around Wranglers goalie Jakob Severson, who played well all series.
“Both goalies were outstanding,” said Parent.
The final goal of the night went to captain Tommy Bodtker, who intercepted a Wranglers shot during six-on-four play and scored a shorthanded empty netter goal with 1:40 to play. He bounced into the boards in celebration.
“One of the better-feeling goals I’ve scored,” said Bodtker.
The captain said the team is “pretty sore, pretty beat up” from their seven-game series with the Wranglers.
But they will get two days of rest before lacing up their skates against the Osoyoos Coyotes for the first two games of the Okanagan/Shuswap Conference finals at the Forum this weekend.
“We’ll take the two days to prepare,” said Parent. “At this time of year it’s really about simple tweaking and adjustments.”
The Grizzlies won two of their three regular season games against the Coyotes, including their home victory on Feb.16 when they scored 10 goals – the most in a game this season.
Parent said that regular season hockey and playoff hockey are different beasts.
“At this time of year, you just want to play the right way,” he said.
Parent said the Coyotes are a well-coached team with a lot of skill and that they can skate.
Bodtker is looking forward to this next series as it moves away from a rough and tumble type of game to a more skilled game.
The first two games of the series are at 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Forum.
Games 3 and 4 are in Osoyoos on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Game 5 if needed is March 23 in Revelstoke. Game 6 if needed is March 24 in Osoyoos. Game 7 if needed is March 25 in Revelstoke.