Despite trailing 2-0 in their second-round series against Kamloops, the Vancouver Giants have served notice that they aren’t about to make things easy on the B.C. Division champs.
Ethan Semeniuk paced the Giants with a goal and an assist on Saturday, May 7, in a hard-fought 4-3 defeat at the hands of Kamloops in Game 2 of Round 2.
Blazers struck three times in the second period and held on for a 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Giants.
Logan Stankoven and Fraser Minten each had two points for Kamloops while the Giants received a two-point effort from Semeniuk.
Jesper Vikman made 35 saves in the Giants net while Dylan Garand countered with 23 saves for Kamloops.
Penalties proved costly in the third period for the Giants who trailed by one goal, but were shorthanded on five separate occasions in the final period.
At 11:04 of the first period, Drew Englot put the Blazers up 1-0 when he cashed in on a Reese Belton rebound. Dylan Sydor drew the second assist on Englot’s second goal of the playoffs.
Just a minute and 45 seconds later at 12:49, Alex Cotton answered for the Giants on a shot through traffic from the point. Semeniuk drew the lone helper on the equalizer.
With five goals now in the playoffs Cotton leads all WHL defencemen in both goals (5) and points (14).
Then with time winding down in the period, Evan Toth gave the Giants a 2-1 lead when he tucked home a Ty Thorpe rebound off a shorthanded rush. Toth’s second of the playoffs gave the G-Men their first lead of the series.
1:21 into the middle frame, Connor Levis tied the score for Kamloops when he pounced on a Fraser Minten rebound and knocked it into an open net. Matthew Seminoff also factored in on the goal.
Then at 6:41 Caedan Bankier moved Kamloops back on top when he took a feed from Logan Stankoven in the slot, went wide on the Giants defense and slid a low shot home past Jesper Vikman for his third of the playoffs.
Daylan Kuefler then extended the Blazers lead at 14:21 on a power play. He parked himself in front of the Giants net and made no mistake off a Logan Stankoven feed from behind the net.
The game’s final goal came from Semeniuk at 15:53. Jaden Lipinski started the play when he raced down the left-wing, cut to the front of the Blazers net, and from there Semeniuk found the loose change and converted for his second goal of the playoffs.
Semeniuk, who was named third star of the game,recorded his first career playoff multi-point game with his two-point effort.
Next up, Giants and Kamloops meet again for Game 3 on Tuesday night, May 10, at 7 p.m. at the Langley Events Centre.
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