Ben Brar’s deflection goal in the third period proved to be the game-winning tally for the Prince George Spruce Kings in a 3-1 home-ice victory over the Vernon Vipers in Game 1 of the Fred Page Cup BCHL Finals.
In a tentative first period, neither team was able to hit the scoresheet with netminders Aidan Porter and Logan Neaton having to make just seven and five saves respectively.
Just before the five-minute mark of the second, it was Lucas Vanroboys that scored the opener on a setup from Layton Ahac, who swooped in from the blueline to take the puck from Nolan Welsh and feed Vanroboys in front.
The score remained 1-0 until the midway point of the third when Jesse Lansdell tipped in a point shot by Jack Judson. PG goalie Neaton protested briefly as it appeared Lansdell’s stick may have been high on the deflection but the goal stood.
Prince George didn’t take long to regain the lead with a deflection goal of their own – Brar’s tip-in off a Chong Min Lee shot that brought the capacity crowd to its feet.
Vernon pushed late with the extra attacker to equalize once again but Ben Poisson sealed the deal with a spinning, length-of-the-ice shot that curled its way into the empty net to clinch the win.
Game 2 will be Saturday night, a 7 p.m. faceoff in Prince George.