The Beaver Valley Nitehawks came from behind to defeat the Castlegar Rebels, 4-3, in their return to home ice on Thursday, following the Christmas break.
Tyson Tokarz scored what held up as the game winning goal at 12:49 of the second period to give the Nitehawks a 4-2 lead. Kaleb Percival and Austin McKenzie set up the newly acquired Tokarz who scored his first goal in his first game as a Nitehawk.
The Guy, Alta. native was recently acquired from the Chase Heat, who had picked up Tokarz at the Dec. 1 roster deadline in a trade with the Grand Forks Border Bruins. The 18-year-old forward is a talented playmaker, and was the Heat’s top point getter with 13 goals and 27 points in 32 games this season.
The Nitehawks fell behind 2-0 on first period goals from the Rebels Daytn Kulynych and Calvin Morrison. B.V. forward Boris Hristov notched his fourth of the season with 58 seconds remaining in the first to cut the lead to one.
Nitehawks leading scorer Nathan Dominici tallied his 19th goal and 30th point 1:36 into the middle frame to tie it, and Jeremy Hanson converted a Timothy Jozsa set up for a 3-2 Hawks lead at 14:13.
Castlegar’s Jacob Moldenhauer brought the Rebels within one a minute into the third period, but that was as close as the Rebels would get, despite the Nitehawks taking a penalty in the final minute of the game.
Nathan Presley earned the win stopping 28 shots for B.V., while Ethan Lawczynski stopped 32 in the Castlegar crease. The Nitehawks were 1-for-3 on the power play and a perfect 5-for-5 on the penalty kill.
The victory puts B.V. alone in second place in the Neil Murdoch Division with a record of 16-10-0-2, a point ahead of the Nelson Leafs and four points back of division leaders, Grand Forks Border Bruins at 18-8-1-1.
The Leafs are mired in a seven game losing streak which includes three straight losses to the Nitehawks inlcuding a 3-2 B.V. victory in OT on Friday, Dec. 16.
Beaver Valley will play division rival Leafs in a New Years Eve matinee in Nelson on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Nelson Rec Centre.