After losing two of three games in Prince George less than a month ago, the Cranbrook Bucks get a chance at redemption this weekend when they host the Spruce Kings. The Bucks welcome their Interior Conference rivals from the north to Western Financial Place for a pair of games on Friday and Saturday.
This weekend’s contests are the only games that the Bucks and Spruce Kings play in Cranbrook this season, and the only meetings other than the three games in Prince George last month.
The Spruce Kings opened that three-game set with back-to-back wins over Cranbrook, before the Bucks won the third contest in overtime. Here is a look at Cranbrook’s season series against the Spruce Kings:
Five games (1-2-0-0)
- Dec. 9: @ Prince George (3-0 L)
- Dec. 10: @ Prince George (4-3 L)
- Dec. 11: @ Prince George (4-3 OTW)
- Jan. 7: vs Prince George (7pm)
- Jan. 8: vs Prince George (7pm)
The Bucks enter this weekend on a six-game point streak at 5-0-1, which began with the Dec. 11 win in Prince George. That game also started a streak for the Spruce Kings, who went on to lose four straight before winning their last game on Dec. 31. It was all part of a 1-2-2 run for Prince George since the consecutive victories against Cranbrook.
Prince George comes to the Key City with a 14-9-1-1 record overall, sitting fourth in the Interior with a .600 point percentage. The Bucks are 15-10-2-0 on the season, good enough for a .593 point percentage, placing them narrowly behind the Spruce Kings in fifth place in the Interior.
The Bucks are 7-4-1 on home ice this season, while Prince George is 6-5-1 on the road. Both teams have scored 86 goals on the season, but the Bucks have allowed 87 goals-against, which is 25 more than the Spruce Kings. PG has allowed 62, which is tied for second-fewest in the BCHL.
Prince George also has the edge in the special teams battle, as it owns the league’s fourth-best powerplay at 28.6 percent, and the sixth-best penalty kill at 80.2 percent. The Bucks have the fifth-worst powerplay in the league at 16.8 percent, but their 80 percent penalty kill is tied for seventh overall, right behind the Spruce Kings.
The two tilts in Cranbrook this weekend should be very tightly contested between two teams that aren’t separated by much in the standings, and the Bucks have redemption on their minds.