Princeton Posse captain Noah Brusse delivered a pair of back-breaking goals Tuesday in Armstrong.
Brusse, a fourth-year defenceman from Whistler, scored the unassisted game-winner with five seconds left in the second period, then added a second unassisted insurance marker with his team holding on to a one-goal lead as the Posse downed the North Okanagan Knights 4-1 in Kootenay International Junior Hockey League action before 229 fans at the Nor-Val Sports Centre.
The win gives Princeton (10-10-1-2) a four-point cushion over the Knights (8-13-0-3) in the battle for third place in the league’s Bill Ohlhausen Division, and moved the Posse to within two points of second-place Summerland Steam (11-11-0-3). Princeton has a game in hand on North Okanagan and two in hand on the Steam.
Knights defenceman Lee Christensen opened the scoring at 3:55, but when Princeton forward Tyler Stinchcombe equalized after a North Okanagan turnover in their own end at 10:34, the Posse took over and dominated the next 30 minutes.
Princeton outshot the Knights 31-10 through 40 minutes but only took the lead on Brusse’s first goal.
With North Okanagan pressuring Princeton goalie Jaysen MacLean for the equalizer, Brusse got the insurance marker at 13:35. Stinchcombe added his second, an empty-net shorthanded marker, at 19:55. The Knights outshot the Posse 10-4 in the final period.
MacLean finished with 19 saves while North Okanagan’s Sean Kanervisto made 32 saves in taking the loss.
In Kelowna, the Ohlhausen Division-leading Chiefs and the Sicamous Eagles played to a 2-2 tie. Kelowna (17-4-1-0) has a 10-point lead over the Steam.
The Knights will try to snap a two-game losing skid when visit Summerland Friday, then return to host the Chiefs Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the Nor-Val Sports Centre.
KNIGHT MOVES: The Knights announced on their Facebook page Wednesday that they have acquired defenceman John Kalmakoff (born in 2001), a six-foot-2, 185-pound blueliner who played in nine games with the Osoyoos Coyotes, picking up two assists.