The Victoria Grizzlies needed just a single goal in order to stake themselves a 1-0 lead in their opening round best-of-seven series against the Nanaimo Clippers.
MVP finalist Matthew Galajda made 24 saves and newcomer Shawn O’Malley notched the game’s lone goal at 4:09 of the second frame in the win.
Clippers netminder Evan DeBrouwer was a hard-luck loser, making 27 saves.
Defence and goaltending has been a strength for the Grizzlies all season, and it was particularly stingy with the team nursing a narrow lead in the third, allowing just six Clippers shots over the game’s final 20 minutes.
The two clubs will get right back at it tonight at The Q Centre for Game 2. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
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Elsewhere, the Powell River Kings held serve in their series against the Cowichan Valley Capitals with a 4-2 win at home. That series will continue today at 5:00 p.m.