By Sara Moulton
The Fernie Ghostriders bounced back to form, defeating arch-rival Kimberley Dynamiters in an exciting match at the Fernie Memorial Arena on Saturday, November 16.
After winning their road game 5-4 in Golden the night before, the team returned to deliver a spectacular 5-2 result in front of their home crowd. The two wins were a welcome rebound from their previous weekend, where they endured three consecutive losses. The Ghostriders’ rivalry with the Dynamiters is well-known within the league, and with no less than six fights breaking out on the ice, spectators were not disappointed.
The game was tame to begin with, as both teams moved strongly around the arena. Kimberley scored the first goal of the night, before Dylan Robertson (from Joel Burgess and Aidan Geiger), Josh Teves (from Kale Johnston and Robertson) and Spencer Bender all delivered goals before the end of the first period. It was in the second period when things became really interesting, as the tension between the two teams bubbled over and the fights began. The Dynamiters scored their second and final goal for the night in the first few minutes of the second period, while Johnston (assisted by Robertson and newcomer Jon Thompson) delivered another for the Riders soon afterwards.
The third period erupted with fighting to the delight of the crowd, and the benches of both teams looked sparse as several players were sent off the ice. The biggest event occurred when Dynamiter Dallin Wolf charged at Ghostrider goalkeeper Phoenix Logan-Hill, leading to a massive fight. Somewhere amongst the commotion of the period, Johnston (assisted by Austin Hirano and Robertson) scored the final goal for the night.
The battle wounds of the players were on show after the game; worst of all on Hirano, who took a blow to his nose and eye. The Elko local is an assistant captain in his second year with the club, and while acknowledging his role as a leader of the team, he also explained the reasons behind the players’ actions.
“It’s always been a rivalry; we’re two close teams that have always played each other and sometimes it gets a bit out of hand… it was a really good game until then,” said Hirano.
He attributed some of the tension to the decisions of the referee, particularly in not reining in both teams equally.
“(The referee) let the game get out of hand…especially when Primeau was getting tossed down and no-one called it; someone had to do something,” said Hirano.
The Ghostriders will host Kimberley four more times this season, including at their next home game on Saturday, November 30. Fans can expect another exciting match at 7:30 pm at the Fernie Memorial Arena, so be sure not to miss it.