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

North Island students release salmon fry

180 students from kindergarten to grade seven partipcated in the program

B.C. Scientists witness first-ever documented killer whale infanticide

“It’s horrifying and fascinating at the same time.”

Port McNeill gets yarn bombed

Colourful crochet creations pop up all over town

Port Hardy Council approves construction of the Multiplex project

Goahead given to “phase one” of the process

Pacific Coastal Airlines in the hot seat at council meeting

Boothroyd noted Pacific Coastal Airlines “Give is larger than the size of our footprint.”

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Fat joke on B.C. school’s sign not appropriate, woman says

Surrey mother says weight issues are no laughing matter

McMaster out, Bolton in as Trump’s national security adviser

President Donald is replacing National security adviser H.R. McMaster with John Bolton

Two killed, dozen hurt in French supermarket hostage-taking

French counterterrorism prosecutors are taking charge of the investigation into the shooting of a police officer in southern France

Canadian women move to No. 4 in FIFA world rankings

Canadian women match all-time high, move back to No. 4 in FIFA world rankings

Supreme Court rules former Stephen Harper aide guilty of influence peddling

A one-time senior aide to former prime minister Stephen Harper has been found guilty of influence peddling by Canada’s highest court.

Annual inflation rate rises to 2.2% for its fastest pace since fall 2014

Statistics Canada says the consumer price index in February was up 2.2 per cent compared with a year ago

B.C. drug smuggler pleads guilty in U.S. court

Shuswap man admits to using helicopters to transport marijuana and cocaine across the border

Most Read