Mathew Saunders begins his celebration after scoring a goal during the North Island Eagles atom development team's 7-6 win over Comox at Chilton Regional Arena Saturday

Eagles atoms roll with home cooking

PORT McNEILL - Justin Sexton posts hat trick as rep development squad notches 7-6 win over Comox

PORT McNEILL — Apparently home cooking sets well with the young North Island Eagles atom development teams.

Justin Sexton scored a hat trick Saturday as the atoms outdueled Comox Valley 7-6 in their first home contest since winning an exhibition over Campbell River three weeks earlier.

In between, the atoms suffered three straight road losses in Vancouver Island Hockey League placement action. But there was no giving up Saturday, even when the Eagles fell behind 3-1 midway through the opening period.

“They earned that one,” head coach Marty Gage said. “It was a well-deserved win. They showed a lot of heart.”

The Eagles also showed it wasn’t a fluke, making a trip to Comox the following day and repeating the victory over the Chiefs in an exhibition contest, this time by a 6-4 score.

Clayton Bono added two goals and two assists in Saturday’s win, and Mathew Saunders and Carson Strang also scored goals. Michael McLaughlin and Avary Miller split time in net, and helped keep the Eagles close while they mounted their comeback.

“The goaltenders made the difference in that game,” Gage said.

Payton Laming contributed two assists and Saunders and Tianna Walkus had one helper each for the atom squad, which is made up entirely of first-year rep development players. The program was dormant for the past two years before increased turnout at this fall’s tryouts allowed the team to resume VIHL play.

And Gage and his assistants have made it a point to emphasize the youngsters are facing a higher level of competition than they did during their days of house hockey.

“We’ve been pretty hard on ’em,” Gage admitted after Saturday’s win. “That was a lot of hard work paying off out there.”

 

Just Posted

‘Out of the Interior: Survival of the Small-town Cinema in British Columbia’ is coming to Gate House Theatre in Port McNeill

On Saturday, June 8 at 7:00 p.m., ‘Out of the Interior’ documentary will screen at Gate House Theatre.

North Island Rising: Political polarization

This fall there will be a minimum of four candidates wanting your vote here on the North Island.

Bradshaw’s Photo Highlight: The last walk together

“I would give almost anything to be able to have another walk together”

North Island College holding information session on new culinary diploma

Get a sneak peek at the new culinary kitchen at the Campbell River campus

Council approves replacement of overhead heaters at Fire Hall

Port Hardy council has agreed to spend $11,000 on the replacement of… Continue reading

VIDEO: Protesters in Penticton gather to rally against sleeping-on-sidewalk bylaw

The proposed bylaw would outlaw sitting or lying on the city’s downtown sidewalks

Kamloops girl, 9, recovering from carbon monoxide poisoning now out of ICU

Her mother who was sleeping in the same tent with her did not survive

‘I think he’s still alive’: B.C. mom pleads for help finding son last seen a month ago

Family offering $5,000 reward for information leading to the safe return of Tim Delahaye

New poll suggests one-third don’t want politicians to wear religious symbols

Local politicians shouldn’t be allowed to wear hijabs, crucifixes or turbans on the job, survey suggests

Raptors fans far from home adjust plans to watch pivotal playoff game

Raptors currently lead the playoff series 3-2, and a win Saturday would vault them into NBA finals

PHOTOS: First responders in Fernie rescue baby owl who fell from nest

The baby owl’s inability to fly back to its nest prompted a rescue by first responders

Five takeaways from the Court of Appeal ruling on B.C.’s pipeline law

It’s unclear how many tools are left in B.C.’s toolbox to fight the project

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve investigating after sea lion found shot in the head

Animal is believed to have been killed somewhere between Ucluelet and Tofino

Most Read