They lost 3-1 to open the trip Friday in Quesnel. Then bounced back Saturday with a 4-3 win in Prince George.
Clayton Chessa scored a pair of goals for Quesnel with Spencer Graboski setting him up each time.
The turning point came in the second period just seconds after Mitchell Deacon scored his first BCHL goal on a perfect feed from Zac Ashdown re-directing the pass home. That goal cut the Quesnel lead to 2-1. But just 20 seconds later Sterling Bear banged home a loose puck to re-store Quesnel's two goal lead.
Khaleed Devji took the loss. But he was the difference from the outcome being worse. He made some spectacular saves among the 36 shots sent his way.
The Express were without defenceman Jared Eng who stayed home with a minor injury. His absence had the biggest impact on the Express powerplay which went 0/6.
Quesnel's second period powerplay goal came on their first powerplay of the night.
24 hours later Jon Calvano was hoping for a much better start from his hockey club in Prince George.
That's exactly what he got. The Express opened the scoring on Massimo Lamacchia's 3rd goal of the season on a tap in after Jason Grecica re-directed a Garrick Perry shot.
Coquitlam dominated the shots on goal in the first half of the first period jumping out to a early 11-0 advantage. Prince George didn't register their first shot on Luke Hernandez until the 9 minute mark.
Click to hear Riley Mcintosh level Justin Fillion.
The Express juggled some of their top 2 lines on this night. Taking Garrick Perry off the unit with Reid and Destry Straight. Perry played with Massimo Lamacchia and Jason Grecica. Zac Ashdown moved up to the line with Reid and Straight. The move appeared to spark the 2nd year Express. Ashdown took a feed from Straight on transition and slid a wrist shot through the legs of Kirk Thompson for his first goal of the season at 11:56.
Click to hear Ashdown's first period goal.
Prince George started to turn the game around in the 2nd half of the opening period. Jujar Khaira scored his first BCHL goal on a late first period powerplay. The Express have now allowed a powerplay goal in each of their first shorthanded situations in all 4 games this young season.
Brendon Fornwald was assesed a hooking penalty at 11:49. He then got his message across to referee Justin Neufeld and the man in stripes gave him an extra 2 minutes for unsportsmanlike conduct.
It took the Express just 9 seconds to capitalize on the opportunity. Brad Reid put a perfect pass on the tape of Ashdown who re-directed it home for his second of the night from the lip of the crease.
Inspite of the Express lead, it was the Spruce Kings with the edge in play. Khaira added his second powerplay goal of the game and the Express lead was down to 3-2 after 40 minutes. Prince George outshot the Express 16-10 in the second period. And a shot advatage that was once 11-0 for the Express, was now just 28-27 for Coquitlam after 40 minutes.
Prince George completed their comeback early in the third when Chris Bodo poked home a loose puck lying in the goal crease.
The captain then came up with a perfect time for his first goal of the season. Off the faceoff in the defensive zone, Garrick Perry pushed the play forward and cut to the Spruce Kings net and fired home the go ahead goal for the Express at 5:11.
Click to hear Perry's game winning goal.
Prince George pressed hard in the final 15 minutes, but couldn't get another puck past Luke Hernandez who had an outstanding outing stopping 44 of the 47 shots sent his way for his first BCHL win.
Riley Mcintosh was a dominant force for the Express on the blueline. He blocked a countless number of shots and passes. He controlled the pace of the play for the Express coming out of their own zone with his speed and skill.
Mcintosh had 2 anxious minutes late in the third period with him on the penalty box for hooking. But the young Express defence came up with their biggest kill of the game that allowed the Express to preserve the win.
Steve Axford didn't hit the scoresheet. But had a great game just doing the little things right.
Brad Reid created numerous chances for himself. But just couldn't find the net on this night. But like he told me afterwards, "The win is what matters most."
The Express finished the first 4 road games on the season with a 2-1-1 record picking up 5 of a possible 8 points.
Up next is the home opener Friday vs. the Surrey Eagles.
Spruce Kings 47
Sprce Kings 1/5
My 3 stars:
3. Zac Ashdown scored his first 2 goals of the season.
2. Riley Mcintosh best player on the ice for both teams. Was dominant all night.
1. Luke Hernadez 44 saves for his first BCHL win.