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Storm defeats Coyotes to even conference final series 1-1; game three goes Friday night in Osoyoos
The Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL) conference final series between the Osoyoos Coyotes and Kamloops Storm is now a best-of-five affair after the Storm defeated the Coyotes 4-2 Wednesday night.
The Coyotes won game one in Kamloops 3-0.
This was only the second playoff loss in 11 games for the Coyotes after they swept Kelowna in the opening round, took down the North Okanagan Knights in five games in the second round and stole game one of the conference final in Kamloops.
A huge crowd is expected at the Sun Bowl Arena Friday night when the series returns to Osoyoos for game three.
Game four will be played Saturday night at the Sun Bowl Arena.
Game five will be played in Kamloops Sunday night.
If a sixth game is needed, it will be played Tuesday night in Osoyoos. If a seventh-and-deciding game is needed, it would be played in Kamloops Wednesday evening.
The Storm carried play through the contest Wednesday night as they fired 52 shots on goaltender Lawrence Langan, who has been a tower of strength in the Coyotes’ net since the playoffs began.
The Coyotes fired eight shots in all three periods in game two.
Luke Gordon scored the only goal of the first period on Wednesday night to give the hometown Storm a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes.
Kamloops extended that lead to 2-0 only 31 seconds in the second period on a goal by Ryan Keis.
The Coyotes got back into the game two minutes later when captain Colin Chmelka scored a power-play goal, with assists from Rory Neary and Troy Maclise.
The Storm extended the lead to 3-1 with another goal by Austin Braid two minutes later.
Josh Rasmussen extended the lead to 4-1 with just over two minutes remaining in the game.
The Coyotes got another power-play goal from Wyatt Trumbley, with assists going to Rainer Glimpel and Jackson DeMatos, with only 35 seconds remaining in the game.
The Coyotes, who have not lost a game on home ice in the playoffs or during the last three weeks of the regular season, hope to continue their home-ice mastery on Friday night against the Storm.
The winner of the series between the Coyotes and Storm will take on the winner of the Kootenay Conference final series between the Beaver Valley Nighthawks and Creston Valley Thundercats.
That series is also tied at 1-1.
Game time Friday night is 7:35 p.m.