Island tour faces Warriors

By the time Sunday night arrives, the Westside Warriors will be well acquainted with Vancouver Island.

Beginning Wednesday night with the Cowichan Valley Capitals, the Warriors will visit four Island opponents in a five-day stretch.

The BCHL club will move on to Nanaimo Friday, Victoria on Saturday, and will wrap up the extended tour Sunday night against Alberni Valley.

It’s a daunting task early in the 2010-11 campaign but one that is welcomed by the Warriors and their head coach.

“Any time you play four games in five nights, it’s a big test for a hockey team,” said Darren Yopyk, the Warriors coach and GM. “There are some very good teams on the Island, so I think it will be a good chance for us to get a little closer as a team and to bond early in the season.”

The Warriors are an even 2-2 on the season after sweeping the Trail Smoke Eaters in a home-and-home set over the weekend.

Westside won 3-2 Friday at Cominco Arena, then returned home the following night to post a 6-3 win over Trail.

In a strange turn of events Saturday, the Warriors yielded three goals in a span of 63 seconds in the first period, then responded with a three-goal outburst in 84 seconds in the second frame.

Kyle Singleton and Alex Grieve had three points each in the win.

All in all, Yopyk was satisfied with the result.

“I thought the effort was there, the battle was there and, for the most part, we stuck with what we were trying to do,” he said.

Cam Gorchynski was in goal for both games for the Warriors and drew praise from his head coach.

“He played well for us,” said Yopyk. “He worked hard in the off season and it’s paid off for him.”

Yopyk said his two goalies, Kevin Boyle and Gorchynski, will likely see two starts each on the road trip.

The Warriors next home action is Saturday, Oct. 2 at home to Trail.

Kelowna Capital News