Friday, January 24, 2014


Adam Rockwood scored a pair of goals, and Gordie Defiel turned aside 33 shots in a 2-1 win for the Express over the Merritt Centennials.

The win extended the Express' season high winning streak to 5 games.

It's been defense and goaltending which has been the foundation for the Express during this current run which has seen them allow just 11 goals in the last 5 outings.

The game had the makings of a tight contest when looking how they stacked up against one another. It definitely turned out to be true.

Each team had to fight for each inch of ice when there wasn't much ice to be gained.

Merritt put the clamp down on the Express early jumping to an early 10-1 advantage in shots but Gordie Defiel proved early he was going to be a steadying presence for the Express in their crease.

Jackson Cressey and Adam Rockwood had some of the Express best chances in the final 8 minutes but nothing found the back of the net in the opening 20 minutes.

It took until the 15 minute mark of the second period for the deadlock to finally be broken when Adam Rockwood led a 3 on 1 rush and decided to keep the puck and he wired a shot over the glove of Devin Kero for his 9th of the season.

Rockwood gave the Express much needed insurance when he found the puck alone in the Cents zone while shorthanded. He couldn't score on the initial chance. But his persistence on the puck kept the play alive as he walked out from behind the net and scored on the wrap around for his 2nd of the night and 17th shorthanded goal for the Express this season.

The two goal performance was a much welcomed contribution for the Express to get a pair of goals from a player who's primarily known for his assists. And when you consider they played without Captain Ryan Rosenthal for a fourth straight game and with out Brendan Lamont for a third straight outing.

Former Express Jason Bird made things interesting as his slap shot on the power play was tipped home by Shane Poulsen with just less than 12 minutes remaining.

Going forward the Express put the clamp on Merritt and shut them down the rest of the night in what felt like a playoff game between the two clubs.

It makes heading on the bus with a long ride up to Prince George for a pair of games much more enjoyable coming off a win. 

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