Friday, March 9, 2012


In their first meeting since game 7 of the 2004 playoffs, the Coquitlam Express and Chilliwack Chiefs finished a 6-6 tie to end the regular season for the Express.

Justin Georgeson and Brady Shaw each scored a pair of goals for the Express. The Chiefs meanwhile got hat-tricks from both Malcom Gould and Mathieu Tibbet to pace their offensive attack.

It was a back and forth game that saw the Express start fast. Brady Shaw scored his two goals in the first period to give the Express a 2-0 lead after the first period.

A powerplay goal by Justin Georgeson and a even strength marker from Jace Hennig in the second period opened up a 4-0 Express lead.

A goaltending change for the Chiefs pulling Mitch Gillam for Bryton Udy helped wake the visitors up. A pair of goals by Gould and a single by Tibbet had cut the Express lead to one after 40 minutes.

Alex Kerfoot converted a feed from behind the net helped put the Express back up by 2. Then Georgeson's second of the game opened up a 3 goal Express lead with 12 minutes to go. The two goal performance from Georgeson capped off a strong finish to the regular season for the 2nd year Express forward. He scored 6 goals and 2 assists for 8 points in the final 5 games of the season.

Chilliwack, still with a chance to move up into third place in the Interior conference kept applying the pressure on the Express.

Mathieu Tibbet scored his second and third goals of the night to pull the Chiefs back within one with just over 2 minutes to go in the third. Then Malcom Gould tied it up with his hat-trick goal with just 8 seconds remaining in the third period. Chilliwack fired 18 shots the way of Express netminder Cole Huggins in the third period alone.

Both teams had their chances to win it in the extra 10 minutes, but nothing was decided.

Chilliwack out shot the Express 48-29.

The Express finished the season with a 36-19-3-2 record for 77 points and a 4th place finish in the Coastal Conference. Franchise records were set this season for most wins and points in a season. Plus fewest losses in a season.

A playoff opponent is still to be determined for the Express. All that is known at this point is that they will play the first place team in the Coastal conference.

At the conclusion of Friday's games, there's still a chance that the opponent could still be any one of the three other playoff teams Surrey, Powell River or Cowichan Valley.

The Express could play the Surrey Eagles if the Powell River Kings lose their final two games in regulation in Victoria and Nanaimo, and if Cowichan Valley loses their final game.

The Express and Powell River Kings will play each other if they just pick up a single point in their final 2 games.

Whoever the opponent is, the playoffs begin next Friday.

It will be an Express and Cowichan first round matchup if they win their final game vs. Langley and the Kings lose their final 2 games in regulation.

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