Affiliate call-up Craig Martin scored the deciding goal 8:30 into the second period, and Justin Niminiken added a pair of third-frame insurance markers as Beaver Valley snapped the Rebels' 10-game winning streak with a 4-1 win at the HawksNest.
Ryon Sookro also scored for BV on a power-play with 1.7 seconds left in the first period in a game that saw the hosts trail early thanks to a cannon-blast from overager Mike Wiest. But the Hawks proved they are still gunning for the Neil Murdoch pole position, inching to within 5 points of Castlegar (though the Rebels have 4 games in hand).
Mike Vlanich made 26 saves for his 19th win of the season, while Castlegar's Cole Buckley stopped 32 of 36 Hawk shots and was tagged with the loss.
It was a game that showed promise early on for Castlegar, but as time wore on the home side (who were without rookie phenom Dallas Calvin) got stronger and stronger. You could blame a smaller ice-surface, a commitment to shot-blocking by the Hawks, or merely the unwillingness (for the most part) to shoot the puck, but Castlegar was not blessed with the plethora of opportunities they seemed to find at will Wednesday night against Nelson.
The Rebels still hold an edge in the season series against BV, 3-2, with the next meeting taking place February 1st at the Complex. These two teams do not like each other, as evidenced by the amount of trash-talk that bled through onto the Hawks broadcast, so be sure to mark your calendars for what could be a heated affair.
Up Next: The Rebels continue their stretch of 4 straight away from home Tuesday night at Grand Forks (7:30, GF Arena).
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