NANAIMO — The Buccaneers (28-7-0-1) soundly defeated the Kerry Park Islanders 7-3 Thursday night at the Nanaimo Ice Centre.
Billy Walters led the way with a goal and two assists, while Darian Harris added a pair of goals to headline a potent Bucs offense.
“Once we got in the offensive zone we moved the puck pretty well, maybe there were times where we were pretty lackadaisical in our own zone,” Bucs assistant coach Cam McCarrick told NanaimoNewsNOW post-game.
Nanaimo took control of the game from the start, opening up a 2-0 lead on a beautiful Luc Wilson release from the right circle, followed by a Walters tally in-tight before the game was five minutes old.
Wyatt Selva, Jacob Gosling and Jayden Schubert rounded out Nanaimo's scoring.
The Bucs held leads of 3-1 and 5-2 at the intermission breaks and outshot the Isles (15-18-0-4) by a count of 43-30.
Blake Wood picked up the win in net, making 27 saves.
Nanaimo swept the season series with the Mill Bay based Islanders 4-0, outscoring Kerry Park 24-10.
The Buccaneers made a splash off the ice as head coach and general manager Curtis Toneff drained his smart phone to make a few moves prior to the final Jan. 10 roster freeze. The Bucs added 18-year-old defenseman Michael Sande, whose bounced around three junior A leagues this season, most recently with the MJHL's Swan Valley Stampeders. Sande essentially replaces 18-year-old rookie blueliner Lucas Patton, who signed with the BCHL's Alberni Valley Bulldogs. The Bucs also dealt depth defenseman Braeden Dey to the KIJHL's North Okanagan Knights.
McCarrick said he was impressed with Sande's game in his Bucs debut Thursday night.
“He looks like he'll be a great player for us, we're really excited to have him.”
McCarrick sensed an excited mood around the dressing room now that their final roster for the season has been established.
“Lots of energy today, a lot of the guys are really excited, it's finalized now, this is what we've got.”
The Bucs visit the Victoria Cougars Sunday afternoon, before hosting the Campbell River Storm next Thursday, Jan. 18 at 7:15 p.m. at the 'Pirate Ship'.
On Twitter: @reporterholmes
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