Wednesday, February 27, 2013


In this weeks edition of the Jon Calvano show we discuss the two wins this past weekend over Prince George. We break down the tweaks in strategy as the bench got shorter for the Express especially up front in the second game on Sunday. And we look ahead to the two games this weekend vs Cowichan Valley and Salmon Arm.

Sunday, February 24, 2013


The Express battled a short bench that got shorter as the game went on up front and posted their second consecutive win this weekend over the Prince George Spruce Kings 4-1 on Sunday.

Coquitlam started the game with 10 forwards, and by the time the game was over they were playing with only 7.

It didn't start well for the Express as Bryant Christian scored just 1:12 into the game to give the Spruce Kings the early 1-0 lead. But that goal would turn out to be one of the few things that went wrong for the Express on Sunday afternoon.

12 seconds after the goal by Christian, Zach Pryzbek leveled Skylar Pacheco and Pryzbek was assessed a 5 minute major penalty for fighting along with a major penalty for a blow to the head plus a game misconduct and the Express were down to 9 forwards with 58 plus minutes left in the game.

Prince George came out of the sequence with a 5 minute major powerplay going up against a rejuvenated Express penalty killing unit. And the penalty killers stepped up to the challenge and killed off the Prince George man advantage. And another one that would come minutes later with Malcom McKinney serving a tripping penalty.

Of the first 12 minutes of the game, 7 of those minutes for the Express were spent shorthanded. But the Express came out of it unscathed with the Spruce Kings getting very few quality chances. The Express killed off all 3 Prince George powerplays in the game. And the penalty killing unit is on one its best runs since the start of the season when the Express had the top penalty killing unit in the league. The Express have now killed off 18 straight shorthanded situations and 19 of the last 20 in the last 6 games.

Will Cook was the next Express forward to go down when he got crunched in front of the Spruce Kings penalty box by Sean Landrey. Cook tried to stick it out but couldn't and the Express were down to 8 forwards.

Landrey was assessed a 5 minute major blow to the head penalty of his own. The Express powerplay was able to do what the Spruce Kings couldn't do on their 5 minute powerplay and that is score. Adam Rockwood buried the rebound of a Marc Biega point shot that was tipped by Justin Georgeson.

Early in the second period the Express lost another forward as Garrett Forster was shaken up and didn't return to the game leaving the Express with just 7 forwards for the final 38 minutes of the game.

The short bench for the Express gave the forwards plenty of ice time. And as the game went on, the Express did a great job of managing their shifts and playing smart and not over exerting themselves the rest of the way.

Mitchell Fyffe gave the Express the lead for what turned out to be for good on the prettiest goal of the day. Malcom McKinney slid a cross ice pass to Brandon Morley who fired a rocket feed across to Fyffe who cut it across the net and slid it through the legs of Liam McLeod to give the Express a 2-1 lead.

Midway through the third period the Express were still sitting on a one goal lead. They got some much needed insurance from AP Nick Hermary who carried the puck into the Spruce Kings zone after Malcom McKinney broke up a pass. Hermary made no mistake sliding home his first BCHL goal through the wickets to put the Express up a pair at 3-1.

Justin Georgeson put some icing on the victorious cake for the Express with a powerplay goal snapping home a feed from the slot just 1:16 after Hermary's goal. Georgeson has scored goals in back to back games.

One of the more impressive stats about the game on Sunday was the Express matching a season best for fewest shots allowed in a game this season at 18 making the work load for Cole Huggins a very manageable one.

The Express will continue their season high 8 game home stand next weekend vs. Cowichan Valley and Salmon Arm.


Here's the highlights of the Express 4-1 win Sunday over Prince George

Highlights courtesy of Cary Derksen.

Saturday, February 23, 2013


Here's the highlights of the Express 5-3 win over Prince George Friday.


 Highlights courtesy of Cary Derksen.

Friday, February 22, 2013


The Coquitlam Express won for the third time in four games in their season high 8 game home stand with a 5-3 win over the Prince George Spruce Kings.

Coquitlam set the tone for the rest of the night with a strong first period. Their forechecking pressure was giving the Spruce Kings trouble coming out of their own zone.

The Express were rewarded for their strong start to the game when Malcom McKinney banged home his 5th goal of the season on a feed from Adam Rossignol at 17:19 to open the scoring. The Express out shot Prince George 8-4 in the opening frame.

Prince George was applying some pressure in the Express zone in the second period when the Express moved the play the other way and Zach Pryzbek scored his 11th of the season from the right wing snapping a shot past Kirk Thompson to put the Express up 2-0.

The visitors had a quick response just 1:09 later as David Stephens scored to cut the Express lead to one. Moments later with the Express on the powerplay Prince George got a lucky break. The Express were attempting to dump the puck into the Prince George end and the dump in hit the linesman and quickly the Spruce Kings had a two on one the other way and Bryant Christian converted the feed from Coltyn Hansen and the game was suddenly tied at two.

Prince George scored their third unanswered goal in the third period as Shayne Morrisey scored at 3:03 to give the Spruce Kings their first and what turned out to be their only lead of the game.

It didn't take the Express long to get that goal back as a slumping veteran found the back of the net to pull the Express even. Justin Georgeson scored 48 seconds after Morrisey's goal to tie the game at three. It was Georgeson's first goal in 7 games. And just his second in his last 23 outings.

Less than 4 minutes later Will Cook gave the Express the lead for good as from the slot he snapped a shot past the glove of Kirk Thompson to give the Express a 4-3 lead.

Zach Pryzbek rounded out the scoring hitting the empty net in the final minute to seal the win for the Express. Pryzbek (2G), McKinney (1G, 1A), and Adam Rossignol (2A) each had multiple point nights for the Express. Cole Huggins turned aside 24 of 27 Prince George shots in the Express crease.

The Express also had another perfect night on the penalty kill shutting down the 4 Prince George advantages.

On the out of town scoreboard the Express didn't get any help as Langley knocked off Chilliwack 5-1 Friday night. The Express remain 5 points back of Langley for 4th place in the Mainland division and the Express have 5 games remaining in the regular season and Langley has 6.

The Express and Spruce Kings will get together one final time this regular season on Sunday afternoon in Coquitlam.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


This weeks edition of the Jon Calvano show looks back at the 5-2 loss Saturday night to Nanaimo. We break down why this team despite all the changes continues to be competitive club that battles hard in each game. And Jon talks about his this season has been a learning process for him dealing with so many injuries this season. And we look ahead to the final two visits of the season from Prince George.

Sunday, February 17, 2013


The Coquitlam Express have a new 5 year lease agreement with the city of Coquitlam.

Here's the story courtesy of the Coquitlam Now:

Coquitlam hockey fans can keep watching high-quality hockey here at home after the Coquitlam Express and the city announced a five-year lease extension on Thursday.

The deal guarantees stability with the club at the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex.

"The city wants us here and we want to be here," Express president Darcy Rota said.

"Among our eight [ownership] group, we had a desire to get something done.

"The Express organization appreciates the support from the City of Coquitlam and our fans as we continue to work at developing hockey players in reaching their goals in hockey and education and also strive to bring a championship team to Coquitlam."

The Express joined the B.C. Hockey League in 2001 where it stayed until 2005, when it relocated to Burnaby for five season. It returned in 2010.

Although the club has enjoyed limited on-ice success during its time in Coquitlam - they currently trail the final playoff spot by three points with seven games left - it has had great results when it comes to promoting hockey players to higher levels.

NHL players who played for the Express include Milan Lucic, Andrew Ladd, David Jones, Brandon Yip and Kyle Turris, while more than 22 graduates have gone on to play at universities and colleges in Canada and the U.S. over the past three seasons.

Coquitlam has worked with Tri-Cities charities such as the Eagle Ridge Hospital Foundation and SHARE Family Services, as well the Coquitlam Minor Hockey Association.

"The Express provide an opportunity for families to enjoy a high calibre hockey game in a great arena for less than the cost of parking downtown," said Mayor Richard Stewart.

Saturday, February 16, 2013


Reid Sturos scored a pair of goals and Derek Dun made 30 saves as Nanaimo knocked off the Express 5-2 Saturday night.

Nanaimo opened up a 2-0 lead on the Express after the first period on goals by Garrett Brandsma and Sturos' first of the game.

The Express opened up the second period with a strong push looking to get back into the game. It was in the middle frame where Dun began to send a message that he was going to be very tough to beat on this night. His athleticism came to the forefront on a number of Express chances.

Midway through the period came a key turning point in the game. Dun make a spectacular paddle save off Ben Israel at one end. Then Nanaimo quickly moved the puck the other way and Sturos was in behind the Express defence and cut to the net and snapped a shot over the shoulder of Cole Huggins to give Nanaimo a 3-0 lead instead of the lead being cut down to 2-1.

The Express were finally rewarded for their strong play as Will Cook who returned to the lineup snapped home his 7th of the season to get the Express on the board.

Minutes later the Express couldn't take advantage of a 5 on 3 that could have cut the deficit back down to a goal.

The second period belonged to the Express with a 14-7 advantage in shots but Dun kept the Express at bay.

Mason Mitchell scored midway through the third period after a number of chances for the Clippers before he finally tapped it past Cole Huggins.

Marc Biega scored off the rush to pull the Express back within two before the game was sealed for Nanaimo when Greg Fraser scored into the empty net.

Despite the loss, the Express can take away from the strong effort they put forth in this one. They finished the final 40 minutes outshooting the Clippers 24-18.

The Express next weekend will host the Prince George Spruce Kings for a pair of games Friday and Sunday.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


The latest edition of the Jon Calvano show recaps the two wins this past weekend over the top two clubs in the Mainland division the Surrey Eagles and Chilliwack Chiefs. We discuss the no quit attitude of this Express team. And we look ahead to the one game this weekend at home vs. the Nanaimo Clippers.

Monday, February 11, 2013


Here's the highlights of the Express 3-1 win over Chilliwack Monday.

Highlights courtesy of Cary Derksen.


The Coquitlam Express posted back to back wins this weekend against the top two clubs in the Mainland division. On Family day Monday the Express dropped the Chilliwack Chiefs 3-1.

The game was scoreless after the first period of play. The best chances for the two teams was one for Adam Rockwood in the opening minutes for the Express. And Cole Huggins made a great left pad save on Austin Plevy midway through the frame.

The offence began early in the second period. Seconds after an Express powerplay started the Shay Laurent sprung Austin Plevy on a breakaway who made no mistake snapping a shot low to the stick side on Huggins for a shorthanded goal at 1:12. It was the second straight game the Express had allowed a shorthanded goal.

It was the middle frame where the game began to shift in the Express' favour. Due in part to the Chiefs taking a number of penalties which resulted in three straight powerplays for the Express.

Former Chief Ben Israel scored his 6th goal since coming to the Express at the BCHL trading deadline blasting home a one timer from the left circle to tie the game at one. 4 of Israel's 6 goals in an Express uniform have come on the powerplay.

The Express outshot Chilliwack 10-5 in the second period.

Travis Stephens gave the Express their first lead of the game in the third period as he showed good hockey sense waiting for his teammates to get on side then carrying the puck into the Chiefs zone and snapping a shot from the right wing low to the stick side past Josh Halpenny.

Moments later looking for a spark, Tanner Cochrane and Callum Hofford dropped the mitts and got into a spirited fight that saw both players get plenty of rights and lefts to connect on the button.

The solid play from the Express kept on frustrating the Chiefs which kept up the parade to the penalty box. The Express put the game away as Adam Rockwood scored for a second straight game blasting home a one timer that powered it's way through Halpenny to give the Express a 3-1 lead at 10:40.

Rockwood and Israel each had 1 goal and 1 assist for the Express. Marc Biega had a pair of helpers for the Express.

The Chiefs discipline cost them an opportunity to try and mount a comeback in the final minutes of the game. Ben Masella took an elbowing penalty and then an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty was tacked on afterwards when displaying his frustration with the call. Then in the final minute Austin Plevy took a checking from behind penalty in the final minute of the game for a hit on Brad Ryan to make sure the Express finished the game on the powerplay.

The Express finished the contest 2 for 9 on the powerplay. And they were disciplined all afternoon being shorthanded on only a pair of occasions.

In the final 40 minutes of the game the Express outshot the Chiefs 22-10.

Cole Huggins finished with 22 saves on 23 Chiefs shots to post the win. The Express did a good job all game limiting the quality chances the Chiefs top offensive weapons had in the game.

The game marked the first game between the Express and the Chiefs after the trade that saw the Express acquire Ben Israel and Garrett Forster and send Phil Zielonka to Chilliwack.

With the win combined with Surrey knocking off Langley, the Express now trail Langley by three points for 4th place and the final playoff spot in the Mainland division.

The Express continue their 8 game home stand Saturday night when the Nanaimo Clippers come to town.

Sunday, February 10, 2013


Here's the highlights of the Express 3-2 overtime win over Surrey Saturday night.

Highlights courtesy of Cary Derksen.

Saturday, February 9, 2013


On a day dedicate to celebrate what the game of hockey means to Canadians all across the country, the Express celebrated the occasion with a 3-2 come from behind overtime win over the Mainland division leading Surrey Eagles.

Adam Rockwood scored his second overtime winner of the season to give the Express the win in the 2nd overtime.

The Express were short manned dressing just 9 forwards for a second straight Saturday.

The Eagles opened the scoring as former Express Brady Shaw hit the 30 goal plateau for a second straight season snapping a shot home from the slot. The goal pulled Shaw into a tie with Langley's Mario Puskarich for the BCHL lead in goals.

Surrey edged the Express in shots 9-7 in the first period and took their one goal lead to the middle frame.

The Eagles picked up their game a notch in the second period. They opened up to a 6-0 advantage in shots in the period. Thanks in part to a 5 on 3 powerplay. But the Express penalty killers which had a strong game killed off the penalties. The Express finished a perfect 6 for 6 on the PK Saturday night.

The Express got a brief 5 on 3 of their own late in the period. And as the first of the two penalties expired, the puck came to Colton Mackie as he exited the penalty box and carried it into the Express zone and wired a shot past Cole Huggins to the stick side to give the Eagles a 2-0 lead. It was the third shorthanded goal in the last two games for the Eagles who scored a pair in their win Friday night vs. Prince George.

The Express entered the third period trailing by two, but knew if they got one, they were in good shape to try and mount a come back. They got the goal they were hoping for four and a half minutes into the period as Malcom McKinney blasted a slap shot over the shoulder of 17 year old Scott Lapp. The goal for McKinney was just his 4th goal of the season.

44 seconds later the Express completed the comeback. Adam Rossignol took a pass in the slot and wired home a one timer to tie the game at two.

The game remained tied after 60 minutes.

Some key defensive plays highlighted the overtime for the Express before the game was decided. Brad Ryan made two seperate great plays to take scoring chances away from Brady Shaw. Malcom McKinney also made a great play on the backcheck to re-direct a pass wide of the net intended for Jordan Klimek.

The Express completed the come back as Marc Biega deep in the Surrey zone on a wraparound attempt sent the puck across to Adam Rockwood who scored his second overtime winner of the season.

The win improved the Express to 6-0-1 in overtime this season. It was also the first win for the Express this season when trailing after 40 minutes. Prior to Saturday the Express were 0-25 when trailing after two periods this season.

With the win combined with Langley's 5-0 loss to Merritt, the Express are 5 points back of the Eagles for 4th place in the Mainland division.

Up next the Express host Phil Zielonka and the Chilliwack Chiefs on Family day at 2pm on Monday afternoon. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


The Langley Rivermen snapped a three game losing streak and extended their winning streak over the Express to six with a 7-1 win at the Langley Events Centre Tuesday night.

Jakob Reichert (2G, 1A) and Austin Azurdia (1G, 2A) each had three points to pace the offence for Langley. Goaltender James Barr was very steady in the Langley crease turning aside 46 of 47 Express shots.

Langley opened the scoring just over 4 minutes into the game. Ben Butcher came out of the penalty box after serving the first penalty of the game. The puck came to him as he was exiting the box and he carried it into the Express zone and wired a shot over the glove of Cole Huggins.

After a faceoff in the Express zone, the Rivermen stole the puck behind the net, and then a couple of quick passes by Evan Anderson and Mario Puskarich to help set up Evan Campbell who tapped it home to make it a 2-0 lead.

The Express had a full line up tonight of 12 forwards and 6 defence. That included 5 AP's called up. And the youngsters, Eric Margo, Anthony Conti, Jackson Cressy, Spencer Quon and Nick Hermary all provided good energy for the Express all game long. They helped create some of the better Express scoring chances all night long.

James Barr has been very steady in the recent games between the Express and Rivermen. Tuesday night was  no different. He turned aside all 11 Express shots in the first period.

The Express ramped up their game in the second period as they looked to get on the board. The Express pressure was rewarded midway through the period as Adam Rossignol scored off the rush on the backhand to get the Express on the board.

Rossignol had a great chance in his next shift to tie the game. He took a drop pass from Eric Margo and Rossignol's shot was denied deftly by Barr. That was part of a 20 save second period for the Langley netminder.

That save of Rossignol could have been a turning point in the game. Moments later Langley restored their two goal lead as Jakob Reichert squeezed a shot between the skates of Cole Huggins to give Langley a 3-1 lead. Reichert struck again minutes later as the Rivermen took advantage of an Express turnover behind their own net. The Rivermen capped off 3 goals in just under 5 minutes as Derek Sutliffe scored at 18:33 to make it 5-1.

Cole Huggins was relieved in favour of Daniel Urbani after two periods after allowing 5 goals on 26 shots.

A nice three way passing play by the Rivermen in the third on the powerplay resulted in a goal by Austin Azurdia. Then Victor Dombrovsky rounded out the scoring as his shot hit the stick of an Express defender and got past Urbani.

The Express battled hard right down to the end with 15 shots in the third period finishing the game with 47 shots.

Langley's win put them one step closer to clinching the final playoff spot in the Mainland division. They now have a 5 point lead on the Express for 4th place. The Express have just 9 games left in the season and the Rivermen still have 4 games in hand.

The Express return home Saturday night vs. Surrey to begin a season high 8 game home stand.

Sunday, February 3, 2013


A pair of games this weekend for the Express in Vernon and Penticton. The Express lost 4-3 in Vernon Friday. And then a game to forget getting blanked 11-0 by the defending national champions Saturday.

In Vernon the Express dressed 15 skaters and just 9 forwards. The game started well for the Express with Ben Israel scored his first of two goals on the night for the Express on the powerplay in the first period. The Express outshot the Vipers 15-8 in the opening 20 minutes.

In the second period former Express Jason Bird playing in his first game with the Vipers and first game since the opening game of the season at the BCHL showcase in Chilliwack, scored on the powerplay midway through the period to tie the game at one. Bird suffered a shoulder injury in overtime in the Express' 1-0 overtime win vs. Victoria. He signed with the Vipers earlier this season.

Israel scored his second of the game and 5th in his 8th game with the Express with just 10 seconds left in the second period on the powerplay to give the Express the lead heading to the third period.

Zach Pryzbek extended the Express lead with less than 7 minutes left in the third period to give the Express a 3-1 lead.

As the clock began to wind down, the short bench for the Express began to catch up with them.

Two goals 1:27 apart by Colton Sparrow and Marc Hetnik erased the Express lead and the game was tied at three. Then a powerplay goal by Dexter Dancs with 1:51 to go gave Vernon the lead for good at 4-3.

Both teams went 2 for 5 on the powerplay. Cole Huggins made 32 saves on 36 Viper shots. Danny Todosychuk made 31 saves on 34 Express shots.

Less than 24 hours later the Express rolled into Penticton.

And to be quite frank it was a game to forget for the Express. The Vees jumped on the shorthanded Express early and often. When all was said and done the Vees handed the Express their most lopsided loss in franchise history 11-0.

The Vees did all their damage in the first two periods. The Vees led 5-0 after one period on a pair of goals by Jedd Soleway and singles by Troy Stetcher, Travis Blanliel and Cody DePourcq. Penticton outshot the Express in the opening period 17-3.

The goals kept coming in the second period. Wade Murphy scored a pair, Brad McClure, Sam Mellor, James De Haas and Cam Amentea scored singles.

Penticton went 4 for 8 on the powerplay. Chad Katunar turned aside 18 Express shots for the shutout.

The loss broke or matched some dubious records for the Express. The 11 goals allowed matches the team record for most goals allowed in a game which has been two previous times when the franchise was based in Burnaby vs. Merritt in 2005 and in Powell River in 2008.

The loss by 11 goals is a new franchise record for largest margin of defeat. The previous mark was 9 when the Express lost 9-0 in Merritt in September 2002.

Up next the Express have their last head to head meeting of the season with the Langley Rivermen Tuesday night at the Langley Events Centre. The Express remain 3 points back of Langley for the final playoff spot, but Langley still has 4 games in hand on the Express with Coquitlam now having just 10 games left in the regular season. 

Friday, February 1, 2013


15 year old Matthew Barzal who has dressed for 6 games registering 2 assists with the Express this season as an AP was recently featured on CTV's Perry's Prospects with Perry Solkowski.

This season he is leading the BC Major Midget League in scoring with 26 goals and 65 assists for 91 points with the Vancouver Northeast Chiefs.

Click here for the link to the video.


Coquitlam Express forward Brandon Morley has committed to the University of Alaska Nanooks.

The move will re-unite Brandon with his older brother Tyler who were teammates with the Surrey Eagles for two seasons from 2010-2012.

Morley was acquired by the Express earlier this season from the Surrey Eagles in a trade that saw Brady Shaw go the other way.

In 18 games with the Express this season, Morley has 4 goals and 7 assists for 11 points. In three BCHL seasons with the Eagles and Express Morley has 29 goals, 63 assists for 92 points in 135 career games.

The Express commitment to player education over the course of this season has seen the Express have a total of 10 NCAA committed players on their roster. Along with helping secure Khaleed Devji a commitment to Salem State prior to the season.

Some of the former BCHLers on the Nanooks roster includes former Express captain Garrick Perry, Colton Beck, Richard Coyne among others.

Congratulations Brandon.