Islanders, Storm heading toward Feb. 17 showdown
Nothing else that's happened to the Kerry Park Islanders this season will matter Feb. 17.
That's when the Islanders take on the Campbell River Storm in a Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League wild card game to determine which of the two teams moves into the playoffs. The game will be played at Victoria's Bear Mountain Arena at 1:30 p.m.
"We've been doing pretty good against them,'' said veteran Islanders' forward Kyle Peterson. "It'll be an intense game.''
The bottom two teams in the respective south and north divisions will square off two times before then, Friday at Campbell River and the following Thursday, Feb. 14 at 7:30 p.m. at Kerry Park Arena.
But it's the game on Feb. 17 that will determine which team advances with the other seven league members to the post-season.
Kerry Park had another strong outing against a highly-regarded team, the Saanich Braves, Saturday at Kerry Park Arena, but lost 7-4.
"We were up 2-0 and they came back and won,'' said Peterson.
"We don't play a full 60 minutes and they have a lot of skill guys on their team.''
Eric Mansueti led the Islanders with a pair of goals. Kyle Peterson and Cody Short notched singles.
"All of our games have been really close games,'' said Peterson of the Islanders' meetings with the Braves.
The Islanders' leading goal-scorer, Alex Milligan, was called up by the B.C. Hockey League's Cowichan Valley Capitals. His presence to complement Peterson's scoring was sorely missed.
Peterson said the Islanders still need to do some work if they hope to win the wild card game and make any kind of impression in the playoffs if they qualify.
"It's mostly our defensive zone we need to work on,'' he said. "Our offensive zone is doing pretty good.''
The Islanders face off against the Nanaimo Buccaneers Saturday at 4 p.m. at Cowichan Arena in Duncan as part of Hockey Day in the Valley.