The Nelson Leafs hit the ice Friday night at the Nelson and District Community Complex to take on the Kimberley Dynamiters.
Friday’s game will be the sixth game in 13 days for the team and new Leafs forward Nik Newman said they are just trying to push through.
“Our coach is just telling us that this is just an early taste of what playoffs is like,” said Newman. “We’re just getting through it and it was a tough loss tonight [Tuesday against Beaver Valley], but we’ll try to get a win in the next one.”
The Dynamiters have had a solid start to their season with five wins in their first seven games.
“They’ve got a good team apparently. They move the puck and they’ve got a really good powerplay,” said Leafs head coach Frank Maida. “It will be a good test for us. We need to come out with everyone playing and hopefully it will all work out.”
The Leafs faced a tough loss on Tuesday night against the Beaver Valley Nitehawks.
The Leafs started the game strong with a goal by Colton Schell on an assist by Patrick Martens.
Then with only seconds left in the first period the Leafs were able to slide the puck past Nitehawks goalie Zach Perehudoff, making the score 2-0 going into the second.
Leafs vet Martens made the score 3-0 in the second period, but the Leafs weren’t able to fend off the Nitehawks as Beaver Valley scored three goals tying the game.
Both teams battled it out in the third period and Beaver Valley fans erupted in the stands with only four and a half minutes remaining when the Nitehawks were able to sneak the puck past Walton, giving them the lead.
Only seconds after their fourth goal, Nitehawks player Craig Martin scored his third goal of the game, sending the puck high into the upper left corner of the net past Walton’s stick.
The Leafs managed to score one more goal by Nelson newbie Nik Newman before the clock ran out, but the win went to the Nitehawks.
“After this loss I hope the team comes out really hard,” said Newman after Tuesday’s game. “We’re going to regroup tomorrow in practice and really play hard tomorrow and get some wins.”
Newman has proven to be a valuable player for the Leafs so far this season scoring seven goals in nine games.
“I feel like I’m a good offensive threat and with the puck on my stick good things can happen,” said Newman.
Maida said Leafs goaltender Andrew Walton has also been important in giving them an advantage on the ice.
“Andrew played really well today and gave us every chance to win,” said Maida about Tuesday’s game. “I think everybody played well. We’ve played four games in five nights and we’re feeling what playoffs are all about.”
The Leafs take on the Grand Forks Border Bruins at the Grand Forks arena on Thursday.
The puck drops at the Nelson and District Community Complex at 7 p.m on Friday night.