Morning Star Staff
Ten straight games against divisional rivals started off on the wrong skate for the North Okanagan Knights.
Game star Jack Mills’ second goal of the night five minutes into the third period gave the hometown Summerland Steam a 3-2 win over the Knights in Kootenay International Junior Hockey League play Tuesday.
The Knights (5-17-1-4) have lost nine games by one goal.
“It was a good game, we were right there and we played fairly well,” said Knights’ head coach Bryant Perrier.
“We’re starting to move the puck better and we played a pretty good team in Summerland pretty even. We had them running around at times.”
After Paulsen Lautard scored the only goal of the opening period, Mills padded the lead shorthanded 1:55 into the second period. Patrick Nicholson, with his first as a Knight (2nd of the season), cut the lead to 2-1 on the same powerplay 11 seconds later, and North Okanagan game star Ryan Moon, with his third of the year, tied things up at 8:16.
Daniel Paul made 30 saves for the Knights, who were outshot 33-28. The win vaulted Summerland (16-8-0-0) into second place in the Okanagan Shuswap Division, two points ahead of the Kelowna Chiefs.
Brayden Dale scored all of Kelowna’s goals in a 3-0 Chiefs win over the Knights Saturday in Rutland.
Six days prior, Dale’s younger brother Brody had both goals, including the overtime winner, as the Chiefs beat the Knights 2-1. Joshua Tetlichi made 18 saves for the shutout. Paul made 42 for the Knights.
North Okanagan holds a two-point edge on the Princeton Posse in the battle for fourth place in the Okanagan Shuswap Division. The Knights hosts the division-leading Osoyoos Coyotes tonight at 7:30 at the Nor-Val Sports Centre.