The Victoria Cougars, seen here in action against the Saanich Braves, won two road games after losing to the Braves at home last week. Victoria beat Peninsula 5-2 on Tuesday, after downing Kerry Park 4-2 in Mill Bay last Saturday in Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League action. Don Descoteau/Victoria News

Cougars win key divisional matchups in Island junior hockey league

Victoria gears up for home-and-home against Nanaimo to end week

Ryan Wade was a virtually unstoppable force Tuesday night in North Saanich.

The veteran forward scored twice and set up two other goals in leading his Victoria Cougars to a 5-2 win over the host Peninsula Panthers in Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League action.

After Wade opened scoring for the visitors 4:08 into the first period, Jack Taylor tied it up for the black cats 4:56 into the second.

But the Cougars (13-10-0-0, second South Division) reeled off three goals in the next seven and a half minutes to take control and build a 4-1 lead by the second intermission.

Tallying for Victoria were Matthew Berryman, with his second of the year, Mateo Albinati with his ninth and Wade, scoring his ninth from team points leader rookie Darwin Lakoduk, who after Tuesday’s game was tied for fifth in VIJHL scoring with 30 points in 23 games.

Bryce Irwin, who recently came over from the Saanich Braves, notched his first as a Cougar unassisted to open the third. Victoria goalie Connor McKillop, tested just 12 times in the first two periods, was kept busy in the third, kicking out 14 of 15 shots, the only exception being Joe Stafford-Veale’s late period power play marker for the Panthers (11-13-0-1).

Victoria, 4-2 winners over Kerry Park in Mill Bay last Saturday, now gears up for a home-and-home series against the Nanaimo Buccaneers, tonight (Nov. 30, 7 p.m.) at Archie Browning Sports Centre and Saturday at the Nanaimo Ice Centre (8 p.m.).

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