The Terrace River Kings dominated their final game of the season with a 5-1 win against Kitimat last Saturday.
Finishing in close second in the west CIHL division to Smithers Steelheads, the River Kings will start their playoff season with a best-of-three game series against Prince Rupert.
Team general manager Ross Smith said the River Kings “totally dominated” the game played in Kitimat.
Kitimat goalie Brandon Heighton played a really strong game, but the River Kings still won 5-1 by significantly outshooting their southern opponents.
Right off the face-off, Tristan Murray slammed the puck into the net and scored the first goal for the Kings.
The period continued with two more goals for the Kings, scored by Fred Mowatt and Ben Reinbolt nearly back to back.
The puck never found the back of the net in the second period, and the third period started at 3-0 for the Kings.
Corbin Legros scored the fourth goal for the Kings, then Kitimat scores, and then Legros got the puck off the faceoff and scored again for the Kings.
The game ended 5-1, leaving the River Kings with a strong season record: 11 wins, 3 losses, and 2 overtime losses.
The final standings in the west were first Smithers Steelheads, second Terrace River Kings, third Prince Rupert Rampage, and last Kitimat Ice Demons.
In the east, Williams Lake Stampeders finished first, Quesnel Kangaroos second and Lac La Hache Tomahawks third.
Playoffs start next weekend, Jan. 30, with the River Kings playing in Prince Rupert. After that they will face off in Terrace at 8:15 p.m. Feb. 6. If needed, the third game of the series will be in Terrace Sunday, Feb. 7, at 4:30 p.m.
“Rupert is going to be a tough series,” said Smith.
“In Rupert, they have a pretty hostile crowd, it’s a packed rink. Last time we played them, there were 1,000 people in the stands… It would be nice if we could get 1,000 people in our stands when we play them.”
The team that wins this playoff round will advance to play the winner of the other western playoff series, Smithers verses Kitimat.
The winning team of that series will advance into the finals against the top eastern team.
The season will wrap up with the Coy Cup Championship in Terrace. The River Kings have a bye into that game as the host team.