The Cranbrook Bucks routed the Merritt Centennials 8-0 at Western Financial Place in Cranbrook, Wednesday, Nov. 3. (Brian Clarkson photo)

The Cranbrook Bucks routed the Merritt Centennials 8-0 at Western Financial Place in Cranbrook, Wednesday, Nov. 3. (Brian Clarkson photo)

Bucks rout Merritt 8-0 in first ever meeting

The Cranbrook Bucks are making all sorts of new friends in this new regular season of 2021/22, and making history of a sort with each first ever meeting against their fellow teams in the BCHL.

On Wednesday evening at Western Financial Place, the Bucks took on the Merritt and in this inaugural contest trounced the Centennials 8-0.

Johnny Johnson had a two goal evening; Cole Assailly, Tyson Dyck, Luke Pfoh and Bauer Morrissey each had a goal and an assist, and, Kellan Hjartarson and Noah Quinn also scored in the rout.

Cranbrook dominated Merritt on shots, but it wasn’t until the 18th minute of the first period that Defenceman Cole Assailly opened the scoring, even with the Bucks three power plays in the first.

Pictured: Bucks’ left-winger Noah Quinn in front of the Merritt Centennials’ goal. (Brian Clarkson photo)

Cranbrook scorers exploded in the second, with Johnson scoring 14 seconds in. Tyson Dyck made it 2-0 at 7:26 (his fifth of the season), and Johnson got his second one minute later (his sixth of the season). D-man Bauer Morrissey got his first of the season, and Quinn and Hjartason got their third and fourth goals of the season, respectively.

The Bucks got in some penalty trouble themselves in the second, with four straight minors over the period, but Merritt was unable to capitalize on their power plays.

Luke Pfoh added a power play goal in the third.

The Bucks doubled up the Centennials on shots, 49-24. Nathan Airey got his first shutout in net for Cranbrook. Keegan Maddocks was in net for Merritt, stopping 41 of 49 shots.

Announced attendance at Western Financial Place was 2,042.

Pictured: Bucks’ Centre Johnny Johnson scored two goals on the night. (Brian Clarkson photo)

The Cranbrook Bucks now have a healthy little win streak going on — three straight — and are at 5-3-0, good enough for fifth place in the Interior Conference standings (one spot ahead of the Trail Smoke Eaters, incidentally).

The Cranbrook Bucks now hit the road. They’re in West Kelowna Friday, Nov. 5, to take on the Warriors, and in Langley Saturday, Nov. 6, to face the Rivermen.

The Bucks are back at Western Financial Place to host Alberni Valley on Friday, Nov. 12, before hitting the road again to Salmon Arm.