BLAZERS WIN 5-4 OVER GIANTS7-Sep-12
The Kamloops Blazers improved their WHL preseason record to 4-0-0-0 as the beat the Vancouver Giants 5-4 in overtime on Friday night in Ladner. The Giants held the lead for most of the game and opened the scoring in the first period. John Neibrandt opened the scoring for the Giants at 11:39 of the first period. The Giants built on that lead as Nathan Burns was sent in alone and beat goaltender Cole Cheveldave to make it 2-0. The Blazers cut the lead to 2-1 as Mitch Friesen snapped a shot in on the power play with 20 seconds left in the period. It was the 16-year-old’s first goal of the WHL preseason.
The Blazers seemed to have a bit more jump in the second period but Giants starter Liam Liston was solid in goal. He stopped 18 of 19 shots as 16-year-old Payton Lee replaced him half way through the second period. Lee was sharp early stopping Matt Needham on a breakaway. The Giants turned it up a notch in the last few minutes of the second period. They extended their lead when Riley Kieser banged home a rebound to make it 3-1 Giants going into the third period.
In the third period, the Giants extended their lead as Taylor Makin tipped home a shot from Wes Vannieuwenhuizen to make it 4-1. It looked as though the game was over, but the Blazers chipped away. Cole Ully responded with a goal less than a minute later as Needham stole a puck and fed Ully for his second goal of the preseason. The Blazers made it 4-3 with just under five minutes left as Ully gave a pass to Rob Trzonkowski who scored his second goal of the preseason. The Blazers completed the comeback as Colin Smith tied it up with 56 seconds left in the game as the Blazers had an extra attacker on the ice.
The Blazers were terrific in the overtime. They carried the play and were given a power play with just over 17 seconds left to play. JC Lipon converted a goal as his shot from the top of the circles with 1.8 seconds left gave the Blazers a 5-4 win.
The Blazers finished the game going 2-for-4 on the power play, while the Giants were 0-for-7. Cole Cheveldave earned the win making 32 saves while Payton Lee took the loss stopping 10 of 14 shots.
The Blazers will play one final preseason game as they host the Prince George Cougars on Friday, September 14th at the Interior Savings Centre starting at 7:00pm.