COYOTES CONTINUE TO STUMBLE AS THEY LOSE 4-2 TO VISITING FERNIE GHOSTBUSTERS
For the first time in two years, the Fernie Ghostriders rode into town Friday night, headed for the Sun Bowl Arena to take on the Osoyoos Coyotes.
But it would seem the hometown squad was still haunted by the hard 3-2 loss two weeks ago as the Ghostriders once again downed the pack with a close 4-2 final score.
“They were a tough team. They came in and pushed us to the limits in every way. They came prepared,” said Trevor Lum, assistant coach with the Osoyoos Coyotes. “We pushed back, but just not enough for tonight.”
Right from the get go, it was the Ghostriders who were out to dominate.
Only four minutes in and Fernie’s Brendan Burge slipped one in for the game opener and the only goal of the first period.
Lum said they fully expected Fernie to come out as hard as they did, but they just weren’t up to the task of matching their intensity.
“They’re a hard team to play against,” he said. “They came out and they wanted to play. We had to expect that coming out and we just didn’t have enough tonight.”
Coming into the second period, it seemed the Coyotes finally stepped out of their cage.
Brandon Watson tied things up six minutes into the period with a beautiful goal with Robson Cramer and Alex Grupe picking up the assists.
Already counting 10 goals this season, Lum said Watson is really holding his own on the ice and is definitely one of the hardest workers on the team.
“He works his ass off out there,” he said. “He just continues to keep on leading by example. He just keeps on coming in, working and being a leader on the bench, in the room and on the ice. There’s not much more we can ask for.”
The Coyotes continued to pound Fernie with shot after shot, riding on the momentum of Watson’s goal. But the pack could only ride so far, and as the clock approached the halfway mark in the game, Fernie once again took the lead with Burge’s second of the night.
Both teams really tightened up after that, leaving the score at 2-1 heading into the third.
Going into the final period, it was obvious tensions were high. It took about three minutes for that tension to snap, leading to the first brawl of the game and a pair of penalties.
Just past the halfway point in the third and the Coyotes’ Cameron Dobransky once again tied things up, giving the pack a real glimmer of hope.
The scoreboard remained silent right until the dying minutes of the period, but just when it looked like things might be heading into overtime, Burge walked in with his third of the night, giving Fernie the lead and securing their victory.
Burge put in an empty netter with 11 seconds left to finish things off, earning him the first star of the game and leaving the Coyotes with a battered 4-2 loss.
Compared to the start of the season, the Coyotes have obviously hit a rocky patch in the road.
But Lum said it’s all a part of every team’s journey and the key is to learn from your mistakes and make sure to always play a full, 60-minute game.
“We’ve got to come up with a little bit more,” he said. “We just had a little, lacklustre performance in that last little streak. It wasn’t a bad game tonight. We had a couple bounces that didn’t go our way, but they could have gone our way. The effort is getting better. The team we had at the beginning of the year, they put in a 60-minute performance. Tonight, we probably put in about 45 minutes, but we’re getting better and that’s all you can ask.”
The Coyotes will be in Armstrong Friday night to take on the North Okanagan Knights before heading home Saturday to take on the Sicamous Eagles. Game time Saturday is 7:35 p.m. at the Sun Bowl Arena.