Logan Sawka was the home star for the Castlegar Rebels 5-2 win over the Grand Forks Border Bruins Sunday, Jan.10. The tall goalie fromCalgary faced a healthy 39 shots from the competitive Grand Forks team. He also successfully defended the net against a two-manadvantage powerplay.
The Rebels were first on the scoreboard. Carson Wornig took advantage of a powerplay opportunity to score six minutes into the gameassisted by Vince Bitonti and Chris Breese. Breese would score on another power play two minutes later. The Rebels had begun a patternthat would see 43 per cent of power plays result in goals. Compare that to a dismal Border Bruins record of 10 per cent. They only scoredonce in ten opportunities.
The Border Bruins did manage to score when Tyler Fyfe put one past Sawka with two minutes left in the first period. The second period sawtight competitive hockey from both teams. The Border Bruins outshot the Rebels 15-12, but only one goal was achieved by Rebels MikeBhatoa at 13:09 on the clock assisted by linemates Tayden Woods and Chris Breese. Breese was having a standout night. This was thesecond goal he assisted in the game. He had assisted on Castlegar’s first goal and had scored the second.
With a two-goal lead at the start of the third period it would have been easy for the Rebels to be overconfident of a win. But this was not thecase as the Border Bruins were first on the scoreboard with their only powerplay goal at 16:38. However, Tyler Barrett responded at exactly13:00 on the clock with a goal for the Rebels assisted by Ed Lindsey and Darren Medeiros. Medeiros has a reputation for never turning downa chance at a scuffle, but had earned only one penalty so far. He tirelessly forechecked the Border Bruins back to their end zone all game.
With 1:30 left in the game, Garrett Patterson would score for the Rebels assisted by Mathew Lambert and Vince Bitonti. As the game camecloser to a losing determination for the Border Bruins, they attempted some cheap shots, but not at the net. They had failed to capitalize onthe five-on-three advantage they had during a powerplay in the third period.
The Rebels goalie, Logan Sawka was kept busy with close to 40 shots on net. He allowed only two. He has so far this season an impressiverecord with a 92 per cent saves record and a 2.70 goals against average. He started the season with a full beard and appears now cleanshaven. When asked if the change had helped his performance, he answered, “It definitely had. I have a better vision of the ice.”
We are not sure if he meant the vision of his eyes or the one in his head.
Regardless, it is more than likely that Sawka will be in net for the Rebels when they play in Beaver Valley Friday, Jan. 15 and Grand Forks onSunday, Jan. 17. The Rebels are well ahead of third placed Grand Forks in the the Neil Murdoch division of the KIJHL. The Rebels are close onthe tail of the first placed Nitehawks, only eight points behind Beaver Valley, and have a winning momentum to take them forward.