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GAME RECAP: Smoke Eaters Fall To Grizzlies In Road Trip Opener

PHOTO: Kyle Robinson/Kyle Robinson Photography

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

NOVEMBER 2nd, 2018

VICTORIA, B.C. – The Trail Smoke Eaters battled hard, firing 41 shots on goal but couldn’t find their way past the Victoria Grizzlies, falling by a 5-2 score on Friday night at The Q Centre.

Charlie Campbell and Riley Hughes each scored twice while the Grizzlies power play struck on both of their attempts in a game that the Smoke Eaters peppered the Victoria goal with 41 shots but Kurtis Chapman stood tall and gave Trail their seventh consecutive defeat as they fell to begin the road trip.

A scoreless first frame saw some chances for each side with the Smoke Eaters leading the Grizzlies in shots by a 15-10 margin and Trail owning the best opportunity to score as Kent Johnson took a pass and got behind the defense before being chased down by Jeremie Bucheler at the hash marks and having his stick lifted to negate the chance.

Both goaltenders were the stars of the opening period of play as Smoke Eaters netminder Tanner Marshall turned aside all 10 shots he faced in the opening 20 minutes while Kurtis Chapman shielded 15 shots from his goal to keep the game scoreless into the 2nd period.

The scoreless deadlock was broken courtesy of a power play for the Grizzlies as Riley Hughes made it a 1-0 game in favour of the home side. Alexander Campbell played from the goal line to the right circle for Alex Newhook before he set up Hughes with a pass in the slot and the forward one-timed the puck past the glove side of Marshall and pushed the Grizzlies ahead by a one-goal score.

The lead did not last long, however, as after the media timeout in the 2nd period, Trail struck just 25 seconds after the Hughes tally to knot the game up. Tyler Ghirardosi flipped a puck from his own end to centre ice as Owen Ozar knocked it down. His pass for Powell Connor went off of the defenders stick before Carter Jones collected and snapped a shot past the glove side of Chapman for his 5th goal of the season and a 1-1 tie heading into the 3rd period.

Charlie Campbell gave Victoria their second lead of the game on a bit of a fortuitous bounce in favour of the Grizzlies.  A shot from the right side was deflected off a leg to the left-wing face-off circle and right to the stick of Campbell, who beat a fallen Marshall and gave Victoria their lead back at 2-1 just 25 seconds into the final frame.

The Smoke Eaters battled from behind once again and tied the game at two at the 6:30 mark of the period with Bryce Anderson doing the honours. Anderson worked his way into the offensive zone before cutting to the right wing and letting a shot go past the glove side of Chapman for his 3rd goal of the season and knotting the game at 2-2.

Campbell was at it again with the eventual game winning goal at the 10:10 mark and converted on Victoria’s second power play goal of the game. Nico Somerville had his original point shot stopped before Campbell was on the top of the crease and banged in a rebound for his second of the game and a 3-2 Victoria lead.

Trail had a pair of power play opportunities late in the contest with a chance to tie the score but could not find a way to get past Chapman, despite some good looks. Hughes added his second of the night into the empty net before Ryan Nolan scored shorthanded into the empty goal to cap off a 5-2 Victoria victory.

Tanner Marshall was strong in goal for the Smoke Eaters, turning aside 27 of the 30 shots he faced in the game in his 4th loss of the season while Kurtis Chapman stopped 39 of the 41 shots thrown his way for his 12th win of the season.

FINAL SCORE: 5-2 Grizzlies

SHOTS ON GOAL: 41-32 Smoke Eaters

SMOKE EATERS PP: 0/5

SMOKE EATERS PK: 0/2

3 STARS:

1) Charlie Campbell (2-0-2)

2) Bryce Anderson (1-0-1)

3) Nico Somerville (0-1-1)

Fortis Energy Player of the Game: Brady MacDonald (0-1-1)

ATTENDANCE: 993

The Smoke Eaters (7-9-3-1) continue on their three-game road trip as they make their way to Duncan to face-off against the Cowichan Valley Capitals (4-13-1-1) at the Island Savings Centre. Puck drop is set for 7:00 PM with the pre-game show getting underway at 6:50 PM with the Voice of the Smoke Eaters, Trevor Miller.