The Kimberley Dynamiters host the Nelson Leafs Thursday night in Game Five of the Kootenay Conference Final.
The two teams have traded blows and find themselves deadlocked at two games apiece.
Dynamiters d-man Mason Palaga says the Leafs have put their tenacity to the test.
“They have a lot more players that can score goals and whatnot rather than the first two teams [we faced that] only had one or two.” says Palaga. “These guys have one or two full lines that can score.”
Kimberley outscored Fernie in the Eddie Mountain Division Semi-Final 24-11 and outscored Columbia Valley 17-6 in the Eddie Mountain Division Final.
The Nitros have also outscored the Leafs 19-8 in the Kootenay Conference Final but Palaga says Nelson hasn’t made it easy to score goals.
The Dynamiters have enjoyed a successful power play this series – scoring in 32 per cent of their opportunities.
Palaga says it’s hard to keep up with them when their special teams are clicking.
“Everyone has really dialed in and we bought into the system that coaches drew uo for us and it’s been working great.” says Palaga.
Palaga has eight points over the first four games of the series, four of which have come on the man advantage.
The 20-year old blue liner has posted 19 points in 14 total playoff games.
Elsewhere Osoyoos and Revelstoke are also tied at two games each in the Okanagan/Shuswap Conference Final.
The winners of the Kootenay Conference and Okanagan/Shuswap Conference will clash in the KIJHL Final.
– Mason Palaga, Kimberley Dynamiters defenceman