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Comox Valley Glacier Kings tied for VIJHL lead

Yetis kick off season with 6-1 record

The Comox Valley Glacier Kings won their first six games of the season before losing 5-2 Saturday at home to the Victoria Cougars.

Comox Valley head coach Mike Nesbitt had expected Saturday’s game to be the team’s biggest challenge to date. Nevertheless, with 12 points, the Yetis sit atop the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League standings, along with the Peninsula Panthers, in the early stages of the 2022/23 season.

Comox Valley kicked things off Sept. 7 with a 5-2 road win over the Westshore Wolves, and followed with a 2-1 win Sept. 9 in Campbell River — who they twice beat in the pre-season.

“You know the Storm’s going to be pushing to come back at us,” Nesbitt said.

The team also beat Lake Cowichan 12-0, Oceanside 6-3 and Kerry Park 9-3. Friday in Saanich, they beat the Predators 5-4 in a shootout.

Several Comox Valley players are among the VIJHL scoring leaders. Defender/captain Jean-Michael Gilbert and rookie forward Nick Esposito are in a three-way tied for second with 12 points. Logan Furlong has 11 points; rookie forward Mason Windsor and Jeremy Dewar each have nine points; and Austin Montgomery-Parsons of Comox, Mason Rudrud and rookie forward Max Gorzelnik have each scored eight points.

“We’re a good club this year, really solid all the way through,” Nesbitt said, noting the addition of bigger and stronger bodies makes it a tough team to face.

Losing Logan Kurki and Caileb Berge was tough, but Nesbitt picked up six American players at a pre-draft in Boston. He expects Esposito, who hails from Nesconset, N.Y., will play Junior A next year.

Tending the pipes are Colton Hanson of Denver, Colo. and Steven Reganato of Holbrook, N.Y. The latter won a USA Cup and the U18 New York State championship last year.

The Glacier Kings next game is Wednesday, Sept. 28 in Port Alberni. On Saturday, they host Saanich. Warm up is 7 p.m. Puck drop is 7:30 p.m.

FMI: call 250-334-4709 or see the Glacier Kings on Twitter/Facebook or Instagram.

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