PORT HARDY—Cody Diotte and Richard Burgess each netted three points and the Port Hardy Bulls broke into the win column Friday with a 4-1 win over the Neucel Islanders of Port Alice in North Island Commercial Hockey League play at Don Cruickshank Memorial Arena.
Diotte and Burgess each had a goal and two assists, and Bill Jacques scored for the Bulls (1-1-1) who lost their opener and then earned a tie in their second game before nailing down their first victory.
The game was the season opener for the Port Alice squad, which has not had a chance to skate together as the ice in Port Alice Arena is just in the process of being installed. The Islanders will host their home opener Oct. 19 against Port McNeill.
Riding the strong goaltending of Colin Hunko and some opportunistic offence, the Bulls jumped to a 3-0 lead at intermission.
Diotte rattled a shot off the stick of Neucel goalie Adam Hall that bounced through and into the net for one goal. Jacques pounced for a quick chip-in shot after Hall made a save but failed to cover the rebound in time.
Russell Murray drew the Islanders within 3-1 on a backhand from the bottom of the left circle with 15:55 left to play, but that’s all Hunko would allow for the night.
Hall was also in top form over the second period, though Burgess converted a quick one-timer off a Diotte crossing pass for the final score on a power play with 7:24 to go.
Jordan Campbell added an assist for the Bulls and Jason Hodson had a helper for the Islanders.
Mustangs 5, Warriors 2
In Port McNeill Sunday, the host Mustangs also broke into the winner’s column for the first time after skating to 2-2 draw with the Bulls one week earlier.
With the loss, the Warriors fell to 1-1.
No scoring details were available from the game. The same teams will square off this Friday night in Port Hardy.