The Kimberley Dynamiters and Fernie Ghostriders battled to a 3-3 draw Saturday night in KIJHL pre-season action at the Kimberley Civic Centre.
The game marked the second in 48 hours between the two Eddie Mountain Division rivals after the Nitros edged the Ghostriders 5-2 at the Fernie Memorial Arena Friday night.
“We came out kind of flat,” said Kimberley head coach Jerry Bancks following the Saturday affair. “We had some players that had played three games in four nights and it kind of showed. I thought we played well in the third period, though they got a goal. But I think we played more our game.
“I’m happy with where we’re at. I saw lots of growth as a team over the three nights and that’s what you hope for in exhibition games.”
Veteran forward Jason Richter opened the scoring in the first period with a quick shot that slipped through the arm of Ghostriders netminder Brandon Youngson. The Nitros lead didn’t last long as Tayler Sincennes knotted things 1-1 with a breakaway effort that eluded Kimberley goaltender Tyson Brouwer.
The two teams exchanged goals in the second period before Dynamiters forward Marco Campanella restored Kimberley’s lead late in the frame. The veteran forward also added an assist in the contest.
“[The Ghostriders] are really exciting to play,” Campanella said Saturday night. “You definitely cannot play bad. You definitely get fired up.”
With 6:40 remaining in the third period, Sincennes added his second of the night, going high glove over Brouwer to knot the game 3-3.
Despite the tie game, the Nitros outshot the Ghostriders by a final tally of 31 to 17 on the evening.
Tyson Brouwer went the distance in net for Kimberley, while Youngson and Jeff Orser split duties for the Ghostriders.
Though he didn’t suit up in Saturday’s tilt after being suspended Friday night in Fernie, 17-year-old forward Coy Prevost was returned to the team from the Saskatoon Blades late this week, adding further depth to a Dynamiters roster boasting plenty of talent up front.
“I’ve known Coy since [he was in] Grade 6,” Bancks said. “We’re going to be a younger team. He’s a very mature 17-year-old. He’s physically strong, powerful. He’s going to help us a lot.”
Next up, the Dynamiters travel to Invermere Monday night to face the Columbia Valley Rockies in the final pre-season tune up of 2014.
According to Bancks, the team plans to reassign players following Monday’s game. The goal is to pare the roster down to 22 bodies ahead of the KIJHL regular season opener Saturday, Sept. 13 against the Creston Valley Thunder Cats in Kimberley. As it stands, with the addition of Prevost, the Nitros are carrying 28 players.
The Dynamiters and Rockies previously opened the exhibition season Sept. 3 in Kimberley. It was all Dynamiters in that one, as the home team knocked around the visitors en route to a 6-1 victory.
“If we win that game big, we’re going to have lots of confidence going into the season,” Campanella said.
“[It’s going to take] hard compete. Bear down, win battles [and] play hard.”
Puck drop in Invermere is slated for 7:30 p.m.