The Williams Lake Stampeders suffered its first setback since Oct. 26, falling 4-3 to the Kitimat Ice Demons Saturday in the lakecity.
Kitimat’s Jeff Mildenberger (1-1-2), on a setup from Derek Wakita (0-3-3), potted the game winner with 12:37 remaining in the final frame.
Williams Lake’s Justin Foote recorded 22 saves in the loss, while the Ice Demons’ Brett Vilness turned aside 29 of 32 shots to help his club to the win.
Stampeders’ forward Jassi Sangha (1-0-1), with assists from Francis Johnson (0-1-1) and Nathan Zurak (0-3-3), opened the scoring just over five minutes into the first period on the power play, before Kitimat’s Brandon Wakita, moments later, beat Foote to even it up at one a piece.
Kitimat’s Terry Whelan (1-1-2), with assists from Ben Rumley (0-1-1) and Wakita, scored the second period’s only goal to put Kitimat up by one heading into the final frame.
There, the Ice Demons’ Wade Masch lit the lamp on the power play to put his club up 3-1, before Derrick Walters (2-0-2) notched his first of two goals in the game to put Williams Lake back within one.
Mildenberger restored Kitimat’s two-goal lead less than a minute later, before Walters lit the lamp for his second of the game to close out the scoring.
The loss leaves Williams Lake in second place in the Central Interior Hockey League East Division, three points back of the Quesnel Kangaroos, who beat the Lac La Hache Tomahawks 11-4 on Saturday and the Ice Demons 10-2 on Sunday.
Williams Lake, however, has two games in hand on the Kangaroos and has six games left on the campaign.
The Stampeders will now play two big games against the Houston Luckies Saturday and the Terrace River Kings Sunday at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex.
Puck drop is 7:30 p.m. on Saturday and 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.