The complacency the Valley West Hawks have battled all year finally cost them two points last weekend.
The BC Hockey Major Midget League team dominated the South Island Royals Saturday evening in Victoria, but allowed the Royals to escape with a 5-3 win in Sunday’s rematch. Valley West finished the weekend with a 12-5-1 (win-loss-tie) record, one point back of the Vancouver Giants atop the standings.
“We were firing on all cylinders Saturday, and were complacent Sunday,” said Hawks head coach Jessie Leung. “It’s tough when you play back-to-back games against the same team. When we played (last-place) Kootenay, and (ninth-place) Thompson, we got away with it. Talent alone allowed us to sweep those teams, but our overconfidence Sunday cost us.”
Valley West easily handled the Royals Saturda night, leading 3-0 and 6-1 at the period breaks. Colten Gerlib, Justin De Vos, Mitch Savage, Justyn Gurney, Christian Bosa, Oliver Alcock, Carson Franklin and Luka Burzan were the goalscorers. Ilijah Colina earned three assists, with Burzan, Josh Bruce, Ben Evanish and Michael Farren collecting two each.
Sunday’s game saw the two teams play an even game through 40 minutes, before the Royals scored two unanswered goals in the third period.
South Island opened the scoring midway through the first period, then Evanish scored 34 seconds later to tie the game 1-1. Again the Royals went up by a goal early in the second period, with the Hawks replying with goals by Boza and Bobby Russell 40 seconds apart for a 3-2 lead.
South Island tied the game 3-3 before the second intermission, and pulled away in the final frame.
“It’s a tough lesson to learn,” said Leung. “But at the end of the day it’s a good lesson to learn.”
The Hawks will get a chance to show if the lesson was learned this weekend. They host the North Island Silvertips for two games at the Langley Events Centre, facing off Saturday at 11 a.m. and Sunday at 3:30 p.m.
The Silvertips are in 10th place in the 11-team league with a 2-13-3 record.