Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Cariboo teams conquer the North Coast

The homecoming for the Prince Rupert Rampage continued on this weekend past, with a pair of games which brought large crowds to the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre, but didn't provide for any points in the standings as two guests from the Cariboo came to the North Coast and claimed victory.

It was the kind of weekend that Don Cherry might have found useful for a new collection of the Rock Em',  Sock Em' series. And a weekend where at least one team called Stampeders had an impressive performance.

The weekend of play got underway Saturday night as the Rampage faced off against the Williams Lake Stampeders in a penalty filled game in front of 650 Rampage faithful.

Prince Rupert got off to an early lead with a Josh Kierce goal at 5:24 of the first, however, as the Stampeders gained their skating legs that would be the only marker of the night for the Red, White and Black.

Williams lake took advantage of a number of power play opportunities in the second period to fill the net rattling off five consecutive goals to cruise to the 5-1 victory, the second  and third periods a penalty filled affair which saw a number of misconducts called in the course of the nastiness.

When the refs had finished with their paper work on the night, the Rampage would be assessed 37 minutes of penalties on 14 infractions, while the Stampeders could claim 34 minutes on 13 penalty calls.

When the actual hockey was taking place Blake Buckham was face with 33 shots in the Rampage goal, while Prince Rupert had their chances in the Williams Lake end of the rink taking 34 shots on Justin Foote, however the Stampeder goaltender was up to the challenge on the night, turning away all but one of them.

Sunday the Rampage had a closer result but a late third period goal by the visiting Quesnel Kangaroos proved the difference in the Sunday matinee, which saw the visitors edge the home side by a score of 4-3.

Prince Rupert, perhaps feeling some of the after effects of Saturday night got off to a rough start, surrendering three goals in the first period to the visiting Kangaroos, however they turned that around quickly in the second period, answering each of the Quesnel goals with markers from Jared Davis, Jean Luc Fournier and Kory Movold.

For the 550 in attendance on a Grey Cup Sunday, the Rampage comeback was an impressive thing, especially considering the physical toll that the weekend seems to have taken on the local team. Like Saturday night, the Sunday game featured much in the hitting and after the whistle happenings, another penalty filled game kept the officials busy in making notes in the game journal.

By the time the final whistle had been blown the Kangaroos had been assessed 48 minutes of penalties on 21 infractions, while the Rampage spent 22 minutes in the penalty box on 11 infractions.

Making the weekend of play the kind of thing that Don Cherry might find useful for a new installment of the Rock Em',  Sock Em' series.

Blake Buckham was in the net again for the Rampage facing 22 shots on the day, Josh Levesque claimed the victory for Quesnel turning away 28 of 31 shots through the three periods of play.

With the twin losses on the weekend, the Rampage record for 2012-13 drops to 1 win, 8 losses and 1 OT shoot out loss.

The Rampage have the week to rest up, but the task ahead doesn't get any easier, the West Division and league leading Kitimat Ice Demons are in town on Saturday for 7:30 face off at the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre.

You can review all of our Rampage coverage here.

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