Border Bruins down Knights

Grand Forks Border Bruins score 5-2 win over North Okanagan Knights in KIJHL regular-season opener for both teams

The start was good, the first half was really good, but in the end, the North Okanagan Knights had to reflect on two points lost in their Kootenay International Junior Hockey League regular-season opener.

The Grand Forks Border Bruins scored five unanswered goals to beat the Knights 5-2 Friday night in Grand Forks.

The Knights travelled to Spokane to play the Braves Saturday.

Captain Kelsey Byrne and Brandon Palik staked the Knights to a 2-0 lead in the first period, though the Bruins equalized before the end of the frame.

Penalty trouble cost North Okanagan the rest of the way.

“The first half of the game was great,” said Knights head coach Bryant Perrier. “We have to address the discipline on this team and we will address it, not by talk but by action. The penalties hurt us. We had to kill a couple of five-on-threes”

Bryson Yee led Grand Forks with two goals while singles went to Graeme Close, Keven Moreau  and Phillipe Lam.

Josh Shank started in goal for North Okanagan but was relieved by Daniel Paul after allowing four goals.

“It was a combination of making a change for the sake of a change, and Josh being tired from facing a lot of shots,” said Perrier. “Josh was struggling a bit to find the puck but you certainly can’t fault him for everyone. He had a dysfunctional team in front of him at times.

“We’re staying positive with the kids and working on the things we need to correct. It’s all part of the development. We’re still trying to find our identity and what we can become as a group.”

Elsewhere on opening night for the KIJHL, the Braves fell 5-3 at home to the Beaver Valley Nitehawks.

Vernon’s Kaden Black scored once in a losing effort as the Revelstoke Grizzlies fell 3-2 to the Eagles in Sicamous.

Black is joined in Revy by fellow Vernon products Kenny Batke and Michael LeNoury.

Kamloops Storm travelled to Golden and doubled the Rockets 4-2. Vernon’s Scott Latwat was held off the Storm scoresheet.

The defending champion Kimberley Dynamiters rolled the Columbia Valley Rockies 6-0 on the road.