Kootenay Ice forward Matt Alfaro kneels at the conclusion of the first period in the team's game against the Kamloops Blazers on Saturday

Kootenay Ice forward Matt Alfaro kneels at the conclusion of the first period in the team's game against the Kamloops Blazers on Saturday

Kootenay Ice head into break on losing note

Kootenay rebounds from 8-1 thrashing by the Kamloops Blazers with valiant effort in 3-2 loss to Calgary Hitmen.

After getting demolished on Saturday night 8-1 by the Kamloops Blazers, the Ice had something to prove on Sunday afternoon in Calgary.

Unfortunately for them, the Hitmen and their goalie Cody Porter were also desperate for a win.

After losing 6-2 at home on Saturday to the Kelowna Rockets, Calgary’s head coach Mark French was disappointed by his team’s effort and was adamant that they needed a response the next day.

Ice head coach Luke Pierce, for his part, railed against his team’s loss to Kamloops, calling it “embarrassing” and an “unacceptable effort.”

With two less-than-pleased coaches heading into the game, the Ice and Hitmen both fought hard in a close game.

A tripping penalty to Hitmen forward Matteo Gennaro just nine seconds into the game sent Kootenay to an early powerplay and Ice defenceman Ryan Pouliot, in his 53rd game, finally ripped in his first career WHL goal.

The Hitmen levelled the game at 1-1 late in the first period off a controversial goal that saw potential interference on Ice goalie Payton Lee, who was turned around when Andrei Grishakov tapped the puck by him.

In the second frame, the Ice almost took a lead as Zborosky earned a breakaway, but he was turned aside by Porter.

Jakob Stukel then roofed the puck at the end of a Calgary 2-on-1 to give them a lead. Austin Wellsby evened the scored midway through the period with a tap in fed to him by Michael King, sending both teams into intermission at 2-2.

Although the game looked destined for overtime, with less than seven minutes left, Jordy Stallard threw the puck into traffic and beat Lee who didn’t even react behind all the bodies.

The Hitmen held onto the 3-2 lead to the final buzzer, and have now won all four matches that the teams have played together so far this season.

Kootenay outshot Calgary 35-28 and Porter was named the first star with his tremendous 33 save effort. Vince Loschiavo’s seven-game goal-scoring also came to an end on Sunday afternoon, as Porter got the better of the Ice’s top line several times.

Despite the better game, the Ice came out of Cowtown with nothing to show for their effort. At the midway point of the year, the team has 20 points in the standings (6-22-7-1). Last season they had 14 points (6-28-2) at this time.

Although it’s not an ideal situation for the team to go into the holiday break, after a series of rough losses, Alfaro said after Saturday night’s game that the team would still take advantage of the time off, no matter how they finished.

“We have to enjoy this break, we have to just be kids, [and] put this first half behind us and just move on,” he said. “When we’re making the drive back on Boxing Day, we really have to focus in and get our minds wrapped around that second half and [know that] we’ve [still] got a long way to go.”

The Ice return to Western Financial Place for a date with the Lethbridge Hurricanes on Tuesday, December 27, the first of a home-and-home series which concludes the following night.

Just Posted

The latest EKASS survey confirms a steady decline in substance use among EK youth over the years. (image compilation via Pixabay)
Latest survey shows steady decline in adolescent substance use over the years

Starting in 2002, the survey has been conducted every two years to monitor changes in substance use patterns, attitudes and behaviors amongst East Kootenay youth.

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

1914
It happened this week in 1914

June 6 -12: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers held at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Thursday, June 10, mentioned Grand Forks among two other COVID “hot spots” in B.C. Photo: Screenshot - YouTube COVID-19 BC Update, June 10, 2021
PHO Henry says West Kootenay city is a COVID ‘hot spot’ in B.C.

There are 11 cases of COVID-19 in the Grand Forks local health area, according the BC CDC

Supporters — and shoppers — lined up waiting at the Cranbrook Health Care Auxiliary Thrift Store on 8th Avenue South, waiting for the doors to open on the store's first day of operations since the pandemic forced its closure. (Photo courtesy Kate Fox)
CHCA Thrift Store re-opens in Cranbrook

After a closure of 15 months, due to the pandemic, the Cranbrook Health Care Auxiliary Thrift Store on 8th Avenue South has once again opened its doors for business.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

Most Read