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Friday, October 13, 2017

WONG OT HERO FOR EXPRESS OVER RIVERMEN

The Express added to the overtime torment of the Langley Rivermen to give the Express a 2-1 win Friday night. Click here for boxscore

Lucas Wong's first BCHL goal gave the Express the win and dropped Langley to 0-6 in overtime this season.



Like a week ago between the two teams in Coquitlam it was a tight and tidy defensive game for the Express. This one only needed a few extra minutes for the Express to get the job done.

Dating back to Wednesday vs. Chilliwack the Express have been able to have veterans Will Lawrence, Mitch Newsome and Sam Kozlowski return to the lineup. That has allowed Head Coach Barry Wolff to spread some of his speedy forwards throughout the lineup.

Friday that balance paid off as the Express were able to roll through their lines consistently throughout the game and spend more time in the opposition zone.

The trio of Haydn Delorme, Colby Pederson and Eric Linell teamed up to open the scoring for the Express. Delorme chipped it in and Pederson got in on the forecheck to win the race for the puck and he set up Linell who snapped home the pass four minutes into the game. That would be the lone goal of the first period that saw Langley outshoot the Express 14-10.



Clay Stevenson got the call for the Express between the pipes. He had a steady game in the Express crease. He had to make some of his better saves of the night in the second period. He was very aggressive in his crease using his big frame to give the Langley shooters very little room to pick their spots.

Daneel Lategan late in the second snuck a shot from a sharp angle past Clay Stevenson to tie the game at one.

The Express penalty killing unit had a perfect five for five night. Most of those kills came at key times in the game as Alex Ambrosio was called for two penalties in quick succession late in the second period. The second of his penalties carried over into the third period.

Then in the final 7 minutes of the period the penalty killers shut down two more Rivermen powerplays.

At even strength in the third period the Express did a good job of rolling their lines and have some consistent puck control in the Rivermen zone. That work in the offensive zone made life easier for Clay Stevenson and the Express in their own end of the rink. Stevenson finished with 35 saves for his second victory of the season.

The game winning goal for the Express was a good reflection of the Express patience throughout the game. Sam Kozlowski button hooked inside the blueline to give himself some time, then he threw the puck at the net that was stopped by Lucas Wong reading the play went to the net and buried the rebound for the overtime winner on his first BCHL goal.

Coquitlam will play their next four outings on the road starting tomorrow night with the second meeting this week against Chilliwack. That will be followed by a weekend road trip next week in Victoria, Nanaimo and Powell River. 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

CHIEFS POWER PAST EXPRESS


Jordan Schulting & Tommy Lee - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
Chilliwack struck three times on the power play in a 4-1 win over the Express Wednesday night. Click here for boxscore

Two of those goals came in the third period as the Chiefs put the clamp on the Express in the final period that saw them strike three times.

For the Express it was a night where they had very little puck luck to convert some of their best scoring chances throughout the game.

Among the best chances for the Express in the first period, Colby Pederson couldn't jam in a loose puck on the goal line with Chiefs netminder Mathieu Caron lying on his back in the crease. Seconds later Caron then made a glove save off Express captain Alex Ambrosio.

Chilliwack's footspeed lead to the Express being forced to take penalties in the opening period. On the Chiefs second power play of the night Tommy Lee buried the rebound of a Corey Andonovski one timer from the slot to open the scoring. That would be the lone goal of a first period that saw Chilliwack outshoot the Express 17-8.

Reid Cooper faced 48 shots - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
In the second period the Express ramped up their game and were matching the pace and even taking it to Chilliwack. It led to scoring chances but the finish wasn't there for the Express.

Eric Linell had a shot from the right wing that went through the pads of Caron but just missed the far post. A similar looking chance for Linell resulted in a scramble in the Chiefs crease and the Express couldn't bury the opportunity.

The Express hardwork resulted in them outshooting the Chiefs 15-13 in the period.

In the opening moments of the 3rd period a soft D to D pass behind the net was picked off and it was fed back to Matt Slick who beat Reid Cooper for a 2-0 Chilliwack lead.

That goal got Chilliwack back on their game who were without Head Coach Jason Tatarnic who was serving a one game suspension along with Jake Gresh for an illegal equipment infraction in their last game vs. Trail.

Will Lawrence gave the Express hope of a comeback scoring his first of the year with a quick shot over the shoulder of Caron for his 1st of the year at 2:47.



The third period belonged to Chilliwack as they went right back to work controlling the boards and leaning on the Express in their own zone.

Will Caverley tipped home a Tommy Lee one timer for a 3-1 Chiefs lead with Haydn Delorme in the box serving a double minor for high sticking.

Lucas Wong - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
On the final power play of the night for the Express Christian Sanda couldn't poke home a loose puck that was sitting in the goal crease which would have made it a 3-2 game. That chance really symbolized the Express inability to finish their scoring chances Wednesday.

The Chiefs capped off a strong night on the power play on a goal by Regan Kimens with 17 seconds left in the third period. Chilliwack finished 3 for 4 on the power play.

The shots finished 48-28 in favour of the Chiefs who outshot the Express 18-5 in a strong third period.

Up next for the Express is a Friday home game with Langley. Then they visit Chilliwack on Saturday night. 

Sunday, October 8, 2017

COOPER STANDS TALL AGAIN AS RIVERMEN WIN IN FINAL MINUTE

Reid Cooper had his second straight stellar outing for the Express. But the finish was different this time around as the Langley Rivermen defeated the Express 3-2 thanks to a Angus Crookshank last minute goal.

Cooper made 37 saves was the sole reason this game went down to the wire and the Express nearly came out of the weekend with at least three points vs. Langley.

The first half of the game was the Reid Cooper show. He was peppered with 18 shots in the first period. The Rivermen were the faster team and it lead to numerous quality chances. But Cooper was proving he was as sharp Saturday as he was the night before.

What stands out watching Cooper is his ability to control his rebounds and keep them close enough to quickly pounce on them all while fighting through Langley traffic.

It was more of the same for Cooper in the second period. At the other end the Express started to generate some chances. Aidan Wagner who two great chances on the backhand and couldn't finish either of them.

Late in the second period Langley finally broke through on Cooper while shorthanded. Sam Kozlowski was knocked to the ice allowing the Rivermen to get the puck in the Express end. Moments later Trevor Ayre beat Cooper on a wraparound to open the scoring at 15:14.

Then came some controversy. With the Express on the power play Jordan Schulting fired a shot that hit the crossbar and bounced down and may or may not have gone in the net. The goal light was turned on, the Express bench thought it was a goal. But it remained a 1-0 Langley lead after two periods.

The Express entered the period only down a goal despite a 34-10 shot advantage for Langley.

Captain Alex Ambrosio pulled the Express even just 35 seconds into the period on his 4th of the season.

The third period saw the game settle into a tight struggle once the Express had tied it.

Ethan Leye broke the deadlock exactly 11 minutes later as he snuck a wrist shot from the left wing through Reid Cooper.

If we have learned anything about this Express team this week is that they have some resiliancy in the room.

Less than 90 seconds later Riley Johnson chipped a Sam Kozlowski pass over the glove of Braedon Fleming to tie the game at two.

In the dying seconds Brendan Budy fed the puck back to Carter Stephenson whose shot was stopped by Cooper, but a rebound squirted to Angus Crookshank who scored with 16.7 seconds left in the third period for what would turn out to be the game winning goal.

Despite the setback for the Express everyone in the building post game was speaking very highly about Reid Cooper's strong play. In the home and home with Langley this weekend he turned aside 79 of the 83 Langley shots sent his way.

Up next the Express host Chilliwack on Wednesday. 

Friday, October 6, 2017

COOPER STELLAR IN EXPRESS WIN OVER RIVERMEN

All smiles in a 2-1 win over Langley - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
Reid Cooper had his best outing of the year with 41 saves in a 2-1 Express win over the Langley Rivermen to open a weekend home and home set. Click here for boxscore

Reid Cooper - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
The Express got a structured effort for a full 60 minutes to post their second win of the season. The Express have also posted points in three straight games (2-0-0-1).

Little mistakes in the defensive zone have resulted in pucks ending up in the Express net which has cost them games this season. That can't be said on Friday night. Their structure combined with Cooper's strong play led to the victory for the Express.

In the first period the Express had a number of good chances to open the scoring. Alex Ambrsio chipped a puck just wide of the Langley net, Troy Robillard hit the post on the power play, and both Riley Johnson and Colby Pederson couldn't finish odd man rushes.

At the other end Reid Cooper set the tone for a strong night. First he stopped Angus Crookshank on a breakaway. Then moments later he made his best save of the night reaching back to deny Crookshank in the dying seconds of a Langley power play.



Jake Brien opened the scoring for the Express jumping into the rush and snapping a Eric Linell pass by Braedon Fleming at 19:33.

Cooper was dialed in all night long in the Express crease. He was seeing the puck well giving up very few second chances. Most notably when he made 15 second period saves.

Colby Pederson scores the GWG - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
Midway through the period the Express got a trade off in their favour when rookie defenseman Doug Scott did more than held his own against 20 year old and Rivermen leading goalscorer Nik Ponak in a fight. That tilt helped the Express who dressed 7 defensemen and had 6 for the rest of the night while Langley lost their top goal scorer following the automatic ejections.

Enterting the third period the Express needed to work hard on doing the little things well shift in and shift out to protect their one goal lead. From an entertainment standpoint it wasn't overly exciting. But it was very effective as the Express sat back in their structure.

Langley finally caught a break to get a puck past Cooper. John Wojciechowski's shot from a sharp angle handcuffed Cooper and bounced in to tie the game.



The Express didn't allow that goal to discourage them. They went right back to work and Colby Pederson going hard to the net buried the rebound of a Riley Johnson shot to re-store the Express lead just 37 seconds later at 14;39.

From there the Express clamped down and held on the rest of the way.

The re-match goes Saturday night in Langley. 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

DRAMATIC FINISH SEES EXPRESS FALL IN OT TO WEST KELOWNA

The Express had a dramatic comeback in the final minute of the third period, but still fell by a score of 5-4 in overtime to the West Kelowna Warriors. Click here for boxscore

It was a valiant effort from the Express that showed character that fell just short at the end of the night.



It was the second meeting in two weeks between the Express and Warriors. The first meeting was a 7-2 decision for West Kelowna at the BCHL showcase. It was a different type game this time around.

The Express had their chances to open the scoring. Most notably Eric Linell had two good chances as he found himself alone behind the Warriors defense but couldn't get any of his two shots past the sprawled out pad of Warriors goaltender Nik Amundrud.

Cavin Tilsey opened the scoring for the Warriors. He converted a pass by Bennett Norlin past Reid Cooper for the only goal of the first period.

Midway through the second period the Warriors appeared to add to their lead. RJ Murphy pounced on a loose puck in the Express crease and poked it home. But after some discussion by the officials they ruled the net was knocked off.

Murphy only had two wait 40 seconds for his measure of revenge as he buried the rebound of a Willie Reim wrist shot to give the Warriors a 2-0 lead.

Captain Alex Ambrosio started the comeback for the Express two minutes later pouncing on Troy Robillard's point shot for a 2-1 Warriors lead through two periods.

Head Coach Barry Wolff has emphasized tightening up turnovers in key spots of the ice in the defensive zone that has lead to opposition goals this season.

Another turnover just inside the Express line allowed the Warriors to get the puck to Chase Dubois behind the Express defense and he outwaited Reid Cooper sliding home a backhand for a 3-1 Warriors lead.

Credit to the Express on this night for never giving up. Josh Wildauer buried the rebound of a Alex Ambrosio shot to make it a 3-2 game with 6:35 to go.

The Express had a glorious chance to tie the game. Amundrud ended up out near the ringette line as he raced to cover a loose puck. The Express poked it past him and two forwards somehow couldn't put the puck in the net vacated by the Warriors goaltender.

West Kelowna captain Jared Marino appeared to seal the victory with 1:18 remaining in the third period with a shot that just squeaked through Reid Cooper to make it 4-2.

That goal could have deflated any team that had just one win in their first eight games. But the Express have kept most of their games close and haven't been far off in most of them.

Jordan Schulting blasted a one timer for his second of the season with 56 seconds left in the third period to make it 4-3. That was followed 27 seconds later by a goal from Eric Linell digging the puck out of a scramble and scoring to send the game to overtime.

In 4 on 4 overtime it never really opened up for either side and create many scoring chances. As the Warriors had done most of the night they were patient working the puck in the Express zone hoping for a breakdown.

Cavin Tilsey found some room and used to gain entry in the Express zone. His shot hit the glass but the rebound bounced to the side of the Express net for Bennett Norlin who scored the game winner at 4:15.

The Express didn't do themselves any favours by going 0 for 7 on the power play against a Warriors team that has now killed off 31 straight shorthanded situations. From a discipline standpoint the Express did a pretty good job only giving West Kelowna a brief first period power play.

West Kelowna outshot the Express 46-36.

Up next for the Express is a home and home with Langley starting Friday in Coquitlam. 

Saturday, September 30, 2017

SPRUCE KINGS SPOIL EXPRESS HOME OPENER

Reid Cooper made 47 saves - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Prince George snapped a mini two game losing streak with a 5-3 win over the Express in their home opener. Click here for boxscore

Reid Cooper stood tall in the Express crease with 47 saves on 51 shots sent his way.

Colby Pederson - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Right off the bat the Express netminder was put to the test. He faced 21 Prince George shots in the first period. The only puck to beat him was off the stick of Dustin Manz who finished off a give and go with Patrick Cozzi with Manz snapping a shot past the glove of Cooper. That was the lone blemish in an otherwise strong period as Cooper did all he could to hold Prince George at bay.

In the second period breakdowns led to the Spruce Kings adding to their lead. Ben Poisson finished off a 2 on 1 to for a 2-0 lead. That was followed 1:26 later by a goal from Corey Cunningham burying the rebound of a Ryan Stack shot for a 3-0 lead by the 3 minute mark of the second period.

Down 3-0 the Express power play clawed them back into the game. First Jordan Schulting jumped in from the point and found a loose puck and scored his first of the season make it a 3-1 game at 15:14. Then 2:32 later Mitch Newsome's one timer missed the net but the rebound bounced to Christian Sanda who buried his 3rd of the season at 17:46.





J. Schulting had 1 goal & 1 assist - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Early in the third the Spruce Kings re-stored their two goal lead when Ben Brar behind the Express net on a crafty reverse pass set up Manz for his second of the game just two seconds after a Christian Sanda penalty came to an end.

Mitch Newsome scored with just 4 minutes remaining for his first of the season to pull the Express within one. Newsome finished with 1 goal and 1 assist.

But like last night in Salmon Arm a late third period penalty cut into the time the Express could have used to push for the equalizer.

In the final minute goaltender Reid Cooper was pulled for the extra attacker. But before the Express could get control of the puck it was fired up to Ben Brar who hit the empty net to seal the win for Prince George.

The final shots finished 52-21 for the Spruce Kings. The Express went 2 for 5 on the power play while killing of all 5 Spruce Kings powerplays.

The Express will seek their first win of the season Sunday afternoon vs. the Cowichan Valley Capitals.

SILVERBACKS 5 EXPRESS 3

The Salmon Arm Silverbacks broke a brief 3-3 third period tie en route to a 5-3 win over their Express expansion cousins. Click here for boxscore

The setback keeps the Express in search of their first win of the season through six games. (0-5-1-0)

Clay Stevenson got the call for the Express between the pipes. He was tested early on as the Silverbacks opened the game with a 5-0 advantage in shots. The line of Mason Mitchell, Justin Wilson and Grayson Constable used their size and speed were giving the Express trouble keeping up with them in their zone. Eventually Constable found the puck in the slot and he scored to open the scoring at 4:05.

The Express were seeking their power play to find some production following their 4-2 loss at the showcase to Victoria.

It came through on Friday. Sam Kozlowski potted his third of the season on the power play with a Jordan Schulting pass hitting a skate and coming right to Kozlowski who blasted it home to tie the game at one.

Salmon Arm restored their lead late in the first period when Noah Wakeford found a loose puck in the Express crease and swatted it home for his first BCHL goal.

Clay Stevenson's best work came in the second period. He stopped Rhett Kingston on a breakaway.

The only puck to beat Stevenson in the period was due to an unfortunate break. Trevor Adams from the blueline fired a wrist shot that Express defenseman Doug Scott tried to block with his glove. He only got a piece of it and the puck slipped past Stevenson's left as he was sliding to his right.

Then Stevenson rose to the occasion to keep his team in the game when the Express got themselves into penalty trouble giving the Silverbacks a two man advantage for 1:26. Kingston had a chance for redemption when he was set up for a one timer, but he was robbed by Stevenson who made his best save of the night with his left pad.



Alex Ambrosio was guilty of the second penalty putting the Express down two men. The captain redeemed himself with the Express on a power play blasting home a one timer from the right circle to cut the Silverbacks lead to 3-2.



Jack Graham, Riley Johnson and Christian Rosa saw limited ice time for the Express. Early in the third they teamed up to pull the Express even. Johnson found Rosa alone at the edge of the crease for Bosa's second of the season to tie the game at 3.



The tie only lasted two minutes, Logan Mostat scored a power play goal to give Salmon Arm a 4-3 lead. The Express argued the puck was contacted with a high stick after Austin Chorney's point shot went air bourne. A brief discussion by the referees allowed the goal to stand. Despite the setback, Stevenson had a strong outing in the Express crease with a heavy barrage of shots to keep his team within striking distance.

Nice Tallarico faced 21 shots in the Silverbacks crease. His best save in the third period came off Christian Sanda on a two on one as the Express looked for the equalizer.

Rhett Kingston sealed the game for the Silverbacks with an empty net goal in the final minute.

Salmon Arm outshot the Express 46-21.

The Express finally play their home opener Saturday night vs. the Prince George Spruce Kings. 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

SPECIAL TEAMS DIFFERENCE IN GRIZZLIES WIN OVER EXPRESS

Reid Cooper finished with 20 saves Photo courtesy of Garrett James
A productive power play for the Victoria Grizzlies and the lack of one for the Express was the difference in a 4-2 Victoria win Sunday in the finale at the BCHL showcase for both teams.
Click here for boxscore

The Grizzlies struck twice on the power play while the Express were blanked.

The Express had a second straight strong start. They outshot the Grizzlies early on opening up a 6-1 advantage. They were physical and controlling the play below the hashmarks in the Victoria zone.

A strong shift in the Victoria zone by Aiden Wagner, Hadyn Delorme and Jake Toor teamed up to open the scoring with Toor burying his own rebound after he was set up alone in front of the net for a 1-0 Express lead.

The Express had their opportunities to expand their lead with three powerplays in the first but were unable to capitalize in their chances.

In the second period Mitch Newsome hit the post and Will Lawrence was stopped in front of the net by Shawn Parkinson on more good scoring chances for the Express to add to their lead.



Midway through the second period the Grizzlies power play used their patience to tie the game. A smart dump and puck retrieval allowed the Victoria to set up in the Express zone.

Troy Robillard - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
Then 16 year old Alex Newhook on a slap pass tipped home by Tanner Hopps tied the game at one.

This was a key point in the game that started to turn it in Victoria's favour.

Late in the period a two on one down low in the Express zone resulted in a goal by Ethan Nother giving Victoria a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes.

Veteran Jamie Rome scored 18 seconds into the third period for a 3-1 Grizzlies lead.

That goal didn't dissuade the Express and they cut the deficit back to one after a good shift of patient puck control in the Grizzlies zone. Eventually the puck was worked to captain Alex Ambrosio who scored his first of the season on the backhand to cut the deficit to 3-2 with just under 14 minutes left.

Then the Express power play let them down again moments after the Ambrosio scored when they were unable to strike with Nico Somerville in the box.

As the final minutes ticked down the game started to open up as the Express pressed for the equalizer. Reid Cooper did all he could to keep the Express within one. His best same coming off Lucas Clark with just over 5 minutes to play.

A. Ambrosio & J. Brien - Photo courtesy of Garrett James
Seconds later Alex Ambrosio was whistled for boarding for a hit delivered in front of the Victoria bench.

The Grizzlies only needed 20 seconds on the power play to convert restoring their two goal lead. Justin Michaelian potted a loose puck in front of the net to give Victoria a 4-2 lead. 16 year old rookie Alex Newhook picked up his third assist on the tally. The Grizzlies finished 2 for 5 on the power play.

In a fitting ending to the game the Express couldn't cut the deficit in the final moments of the game on their final power play of the game. The Express finished 0 for 6 on the power play.

The effort level was there for the Express but they just couldn't take advantage of their chances. The Express outshot Victoria 28-24. The loss now sees the Express winless in their first 5 games (0-4-1) to start the season.

Up next the Express are in Salmon Arm this Friday.




Thursday, September 21, 2017

WARRIORS DROP EXPRESS AT SHOWCASE

The West Kelowna Warriors improved to 3-0 all time vs. the Express at the Bauer BCHL showcase with a 7-2 win Wednesday night. Click here for boxscore

It was the second straight year and 3rd time in the last 4 seasons the Express and Warriors met at the annual event.

The setback kept the Express winless through their first 4 games of the season (0-3-1-0).

The first period saw the Express generate some of their best chances of the game. Will Lawrence was stopped in the slot on a set up from Hunter Fraser.

Joshua Wildauer opened the scoring for the Express as he was the beneficiary of some quick passes from line mates Christian Sanda and Colby Pederson who found Wildauer alone in front of the net and he scored his first BCHL goal just shy of the 8 minute mark.



Moments later Eric Linell was inches away from doubling the Express lead as he raced into the Warriors zone and rang a shot off the post from the right wing.

Warriors forward Matt Kowalski has been a human highlight reel early in this BCHL season. He added to it late in the first period as he sped into the Express zone danced around a defender then snapped a quick shot past the glove of Reid Cooper to tie the game at 1 after 20 minutes.

West Kelowna opened the second period on a power play when Sam Kozlowski was called for hooking at the 20:00 mark.

With one second left in the power play the puck came back to Warriors defenseman Stephen Kleysen at the point who snapped a shot over the glove of Reid Cooper for a 2-1 Warriors lead.

At this point the Warriors started the pull away from the Express. Willie Reid and Chase Stevenson both scored with tap ins in front of the Express net just over 5 minutes apart, that in combination of the Express going 0 for 3 on the power play in the period saw the Warriors take a 4-1 lead into the third period.

West Kelowna did an excellent job Wednesday night getting pucks and bodies to the net which led to 4 of their goals.

Max Bulawka deftly redirected a Michael Ryan point shot and Matthew Campese was able to jam the puck under Cooper on the power play to open a 6-1 Warriors lead.

Then immediately following the third period media timeout veteran Jared Marino off a won face-off in the Express zone snapped home his second of the season for a 7-1 Warriors lead.

Rookie Haydn Delorme rounded out the scoring burying the rebound of a Doug Scott point shot for his first BCHL goal at 15:24.



The Warriors outshot the Express 52-32. West Kelowna was 2 for 3 on the power play while the Express went 0 for 3.

Up next for the Express is their second game at the showcase Sunday afternoon vs. Victoria. 

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

EAGLES 5 EXPRESS 1

The Express are still in search of their first pre-season win through four games.

Thursday they dropped a 5-1 decision in Surrey.

Things started well for the Express with veteran Cal Babych setting up Eric Linell for a tap in to open the scoring just 1:28 into the game.

Then goaltender Nicolas Lee went to work in the Express crease. He made 14 first period saves to preserve the Express lead through 20 minutes. Most of his best work came in the opening 10 minutes of the frame shortly after the Express opened the scoring.

Mack Merriman scored his first of two on the night on the power play with a screen shot from the point to tie the game at one. Less than two minutes later Jackson Ross snapped home a shot to give Surrey a 2-1 lead.

Nicolas Lee split the goaltending duties with Robert Nawrot halfway through the game. Lee finished with 21 saves on 23 shots.

The Eagles added three in the third including Merriman's second of the night and singles from Chase Danol and Caige Sterzer to round out the scoring.

Among the players that caught my eye Jordan Schulting was playing with some happy legs skating up and down the ice. And Lucas Wong shows plenty of poise on the Express blueline.

The Eagles outshot the Express 36-24. The Express were 0 for 6 on the powerplay while Surrey went 1 for 4.

The teams will meet again in the exhibition finale for the Express Friday night in Poco. Then they will do it for real in the season opener for the Express Sunday September 10th in Surrey. 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

CHIEFS 8 EXPRESS 1

The Express played their 3rd exhibition game and fell by an 8-1 score to the RBC cup hosts the Chilliwack Chiefs in Hope.


16 year old Harrison Blaisdel got things rolling for Chilliwack by scoring the Chiefs first two goals of the game for a 2-0 Chiefs lead before the game was 13 minutes old.


By the end of the period the Chiefs had built a 4-0 lead and had a 16-5 advantage in shots.


It was only more of the same in the second period on goals from Corey Adnonovski and veteran Tommy Lee.


Reid Cooper got the start in goal for the Express and was beat for the Chiefs first 6 markers. Clay Stevenson played the second half of the game.


Bobby Young rounded out the scoring for the Chiefs in the second period for a 7-0 lead.


Blasidell capped off the hat-trick just 2:20 into the third period burying his own rebound for a shorthanded goal. If this game was any indication, Blaisdell will be a household name in the BCHL in the very near future.


Josh Wildauer broke Mathieu Caron's shutout bid with the lone goal for the Express on the powerplay.


The Chiefs outshot the Express 41-16. Chilliwack struck three times on ten powerplays. The Express were one for four.



The Express get right back in action Wednesday night with their fourth exhibition matchup in Surrey.  

Thursday, August 24, 2017

RIVERMEN TAKE SECOND EXHIBITION MEETING WITH EXPRESS

A late shorthanded goal ended up being the difference in a 3-2 Langley win over the Express.

The win completed a two game home and home sweep for Langley following their 10-3 win Wednesday night.

Both teams dressed a more experienced lineup. The Express played 5 veterans Alex Ambrosio, Will Lawrence, Noah Turanski, Troy Robillard and Jake Brien. Langley dressed 7 veterans.

The Express handed the goaltending duties to Daniel Paul and Bryce Schiebel and they were the story for the Express.

Paul was only beaten once in his half of the game on a first period power play goal from Eric Butte which beat him up over his glove. That lone blemish doesn't take away from a very solid outing as he kept the Express within striking distance. Paul's best save came in the first period as he came to his left and got his pad down to deny Nik Ponak.

Alex Ambrosio pulled the Express even late in the second period. He showed his quick release unleashing a one timer from the slot on a set up from Riley Johnson.

Bryce Schiebel picked up right where Daniel Paul left off with strong play in the Express crease. He backed stopped the Express to a 1-1 after 2 periods.

Josh Bourne gave the Express their lone lead of the night just shy of the 7 minute mark when his wrist shot from the slot beat Chad Kromar.

But the lead only lasted 24 seconds as Angus Crookshank snuck a backhand short side on Schiebel to tie the game at 2.

It didn't take long for the Mainland division foes to re-establish the dislike for one another. It was a feisty affair that had the feel of regular season intensity.

Langley broke the deadlock with the Express on the power play when Crookshank's forechecking pressure forced an Express turnover that Regan Kimens capitalized on for a 3-2 Langley lead with just 1:18 to go.

Will Lawrence had the Express best chance to equalize with 30 seconds left off a won face-off. He had a clean look for a shot off the draw but hit something and couldn't beat Cromar.

The Express are back in exhibition action on August 29th in Hope vs. the Chilliwack Chiefs.


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

EXPRESS OPEN EXHIBITION

The Coquitlam Express dropped a 10-3 decision to the Langley Rivermen in the exhibition opener for both clubs.

It was a back and forth opening 20 minutes. The Express had 3 consecutive good shifts in the Langley zone. And just as quickly as those shifts played out, Langley then suddenly blew the game open. They struck three times in a span of 1:50 and four times in a span of 5:33 to open a 4-0 lead. Ethan Leyh scored a pair of goals.

The Express had a good response for the period was done. Charlie Wilkie, Qunny Baker and Teddy Prior scored for the Express and it was 4-3 Langley after one.

Langley added three goals in the second period. Nick Grimaldi for the Express couldn't convert on a penalty shot midway through the period.

The visitors padded their lead in the final 5 minutes to round out the scoring.

The teams will meet again Thursday night in Langley in the second half of the home and home. 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

UDAHL COMMITTS TO SALVE REGINA

Photo courtesy of Garett James
Forward Erik Udahl (96) has committed to Salve Regina Seahawks (Div. III) for the fall of 2017. They're located in Newport Rhode Island and play in the NCAA Division III Commonwealth Coast conference.



Udahl, a Walpole Massachussetts native played parts of the last two seasons with the Express. In 44 career games with the Express during that time he tallied 10 goals and 10 assists for 20 points. He dressed in only 11 games with the Express in the 2016-17 season, but was able to chip in with 3 goals and 4 assists for 11 points. In three BCHL seasons with the Express and Langley Rivermen, Udahl scored 19 goals and 20 assists for 39 points in 92 games.

Express Head Coach and GM Barry Wolff: "We are very happy for Erik and his decision to play for Salve Regina where he will attend a great academic school. He's faced a lot of adversity over the last 16 months and a season ending injury. Through it all Erik has found a way to put it all behind him and move forward."

The Express would like to congratulate Erik on his commitment and thank him for his contributions to the Express.


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

BULLDOGS @ EXPRESS HIGHLIGHTS

Here's the highlights of the 3-0 Express win over the Bulldogs Sunday.



Highlights courtesy of Jorge Parra and Underdog Productions.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

COOPER TAKES BITE OUT OF BULLDOGS

Reid Cooper made 35 saves for his first BCHL shutout and Christian Bosa scored a pair of first period goals as the Express shutout the Alberni Valley Bulldogs 3-0. Click here for boxscore

It was a game that featured a pair of teams that won't be heading to the BCHL playoffs.

The Express resembled a team that is still working hard to finish the season on a positive note.

They jumped on the Bulldogs and it didn't take long for them to be rewarded.

Noah Turanski led the rush out of the Express zone and dished to Bosa who called for the puck, then when he got it he ripped a shot up over the glove of Brody Claeys for a 1-0 Express lead.



Boss only had to wait 1:34 for his next goal. This time he re-directed a David Giunta point shot for a 2-0 Express lead. The Bulldogs briefly argued Bosa's stick was high, but a short dicussion determined the goal was legal.

The two goals for the Express were all part of a strong opening period that saw the Express outshoot Alberni Valley 18-11.

Blake Hayward gave the Express a 3-0 lead early in the second period taking a Luca Leone pass and slding a backhand home for his 8th of the season.

That would end up being the final goal of the night for the Express, but the odd man rushes for the Express would keep on coming in the opening half of the period, and Claeys was the lone reason the Express didn't add to their lead.

Midway through the second period the game started to shift a little and Reid Cooper got locked in the Express crease. He stopped 9 shots in the second period. He then added another 15 shots in the third but weren't able to beat the Express goaltender who posted his first career BCHL shutout. Cooper can also thank his teammates for their solid play in front of him limiting the high quality chances against and getting sticks in the way to deflect Bulldog shots away from the Express net.

The shots finished 39-35 in favour of the Express which is just the second time in 57 games the Express have outshot an opponent. The other time came in the first meeting of the season between the two teams at the Bauer BCHL showcase in Chilliwack in September.

The Express have one game left in their season this coming Friday when they host the Prince George Spruce Kings.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

WILD 9 EXPRESS 0

Matt Baker's 3 goal and 1 assist performance paced Wenatchee's attack in a 9-0 win over the Express Wednesday.

It was the 4th straight shutout in the season series for Wenatchee over the Express.

The Wild's fast paced uptempo game was too much for the Express to handle on this night. Despite Lawson Fenton's best efforts, and he did make a lot of good saves, the goals eventually started to go in.

Baker converted a feed off the rush for his first of the night to open the scoring. Brian Willams won a puck battle on the boards then cut into the slot and scored for a 2-0 lead after one.

Wenatchee really pulled away in the first 8 minutes of the second period. Baker scored twice to complete his hat-trick. Dakota Raabe, Alex Bates and Tyler Rockwell also scored for a 7-0 lead by the 7:49 mark.

Lawson Fenton was relieved after 7 goals on 28 shots. Reid Cooper did his best to shut the door the rest of the way in the second period with 10 saves to finish the period.

AJ Vanderbeck and Logan Miliken struck just over a minute apart in the third period to round out the scoring.

Wenatchee split their goaltending duties with Anthony Yamnitsky making just 6 saves in 40 minutes. Anthony Cooly turned aside all 7 Express shots in the third period. The final shots finished 58-13 for the Wild.

The win opened up a 5 point lead on Wenatchee on Chilliwack for first place in the Mainland division. The Wild will finish the season with 4 straight meetings with the Langley Rivermen. Chilliwack has 5 games left in their season.

The Express have two games left in their season. They will host Alberni Valley Sunday and then wrap up the season vs. Prince George a week from this Friday. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

EXPRESS COMEBACK FALLS JUST SHORT

The Express battled back in the final 24 minutes but saw their come back effort come just short in a 5-3 loss to the Chilliwack Chiefs. Click here for boxscore

For Chilliwack it clinched a 7 game season series sweep of the Express.

The Express returned home to begin a 4 game home stand to wrap up the regular season.

Another chapter of the Express injury riddled season was written over the weekend with Lawson Fenton and Reid Cooper getting hurt forcing AP's from the Vancouver Northeast Chiefs Kolby Matthews and Jonathan Holloway to dress for the Express between the pipes.

Matthews, who has dressed for the Express as an AP in the past made his first BCHL start and second appearance for the Express. Overall he had a pretty solid game going up against one of the BCHL's top team.

He may have taken the loss in the game, but Chilliwack needed to get to the net in order to convert close plays in front of the net because shots from well out weren't going to beat the Express goaltender.

Kohen Olischefski opened the scoring for Chilliwack converting a feed from behind the Express net and tucking it home.

Six minutes later Kale Kane buried the rebound of a Jordan Kawaguchi shot for a power play goal giving the Chiefs a 2-0 lead after the first period.

The Chiefs outshot the Express in the first period by a count of 20-5. The Express have Matthews to thank for minimizing the damage. He looked poised and confident in the crease with the Chilliwack shots peppered his way.

Davis Bunz converted his own rebound as he cut in from the right wing to make it 3-0 Chiefs. Four minutes later it was 4-0 on Kane's second of the game finishing off a 2 on 1 chance in close to the Express crease.

Owen Stout returned to the lineup on the weekend road trip in the interior. He has picked up right where he left off as one of the Express top point producers. He scored three goals in two games on the road. Wednesday he scored a highlight reel goal late in the second period taking a Mitch Newsome pass and beating a Chiefs defender off the rush then slid a backhand home between the pads of Mathieu Caron to get the Express on the board. Stout finished the game with a goal and an assist.



That goal sparked an Express rally that carried into the third period.

Will Lawrence made it a 4-2 game on a wraparound just 1:15 into the period.

Then back to back Chilliwack penalties gave the Express a 5 on 3 advantage for just over a minute, despite good puck control in the Chiefs zone the Express couldn't capitalize.

Moments after the teams returned to 5 on 5 Jordan Schulting pulled the Express within one walking in from the point and snapped a shot past the glove of Caron. The former Chiefs defenseman had a goal and an assist in the third period.

With 10 minutes left in the third period there was plenty of time for the Express to complete the comeback.

It was at this point the Chiefs worked to put the clamp on the Express come back bid. Kolby Matthews came up with some key stops to keep the dream of the come back alive.



In the final minute of the third period following a face-off in the Express zone Chiefs captain Jordan Kawaguchi dashed the Express come back hopes tapping home a Kohen Olischefski pass at the edge of the crease for 5-3 Chiefs lead.

Kawaguchi finished with a goal and an assist. Kale Kane finished with two goals and an assist.

The Express will have the weekend off before returning to action next Wednesday when they host the Wenatchee Wild. 

Friday, January 27, 2017

CHIEFS 3 EXPRESS 0

Mark Sinclair made 26 saves and Kohen Olishefski and Cole Poliziani each had a goal and an assist as the Chiefs blanked the Express 3-0 Friday night. Click here for boxscore

Chilliwack went to work right away jumping on the Express like they had done in the previous two meetings this month.

The Chiefs owned the puck in the Express zone and all Express netminder Reid Cooper could do was fight off the Chilliwack attack as best he could.

Eventually the Chiefs broke through and it was their hockey IQ which opened up the game in their favour.

A heads up play by Cole Poliziani saw him quickly lift the stick of an Express defender steal the puck and quickly snap a shot from the slot past Cooper to open the scoring.

Then it was Anthony Vincent who was tied up nicely along the boards, but the Express forgot to take out his legs that Vincent used the kick the puck in front of the Express net to Aaron O'Neill who outwaited Cooper to make it 2-0 Chilliwack.

It took until the 15 minute mark of the first period for the Express to register their first shot off the stick of Blake Hayward at the side of the Chiefs net. By that point the Chiefs already had 14 on the Express net.

Brett Cox registered the only other Express shot of the first period a weak wrister from the point. The Chiefs fired 19 shots in the first period.

The second period saw the Express start to pick up their game but were denied at every turn by Mark Sinclair.

Kohen Olischefski from the top of the left circle on the power play beat Cooper with a one timer for 3-0 Chiefs lead.

In the final 40 minutes the Express best chances to to get on the board saw Mark Sinclair make saves on Luca Leone from the slot, Sam Kozlowski alone in front of the net on the power play in the third.

Cooper at the other end had a solid outing despite taking the loss with 35 saves and turned aside 14 of 15 shots in the final two periods.

One of the players that really caught my eye for the Express tonight was young AP Lucas Wong. The defenseman looked confident all night long moving the puck out of the defensive zone, winning battles for the puck and playing an overall steady game.

The Express return to action Saturday night when they visit the Langley Rivermen. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

EXPRESS RALLY IN 3RD TO TOP EAGLES


Jake Toor scored the game winning goal - Photo courtesy of Damon James
For the second straight meeting the Express used a third period come back en route to a 4-3 win over the Surrey Eagles. Click here for boxscore

The previous meeting between the two teams needed overtime to decide the matchup, tonight the Express were able to get the job done in regulation.

The win clinches the season series between the two teams in favour of the Express 4-3.

Veteran experience helped the opposition carry them to victory over the Express in the last two games. Wednesday's game the Express can point to their veterans who played a key role in this win.

Alex Ambrosio (middle) scored twice - Photo courtesy of Damon James
A veteran opened the scoring, but it was a youngster helped get the play started. Christian Bosa saw a hit coming from former teammate Domenic Masellis and Bosa braced for it sending Masellis to the ice. Moments later Bosa intercepted a Masellis clearing attempt along the boards setting up Ambrosio who opened the scoring. The assist for Bosa was his third in his last two games.

The lead only lasted a shade under 90 seconds on a long stretch pass that allowed Ashton Calder to get a half step on the Express defence and Calder beat Lawson Fenton on a breakaway to tie the game at one.

Surrey had moments of owning the run of play in the Express zone. But one mistake resulted in a turnover allowing Ambrosio and Sam Kozlowski to break out on a two on one. Ambrosio had his options on the rush to send the puck across to Kozlowski who opened up for a one timer, Ambrosio decided to keep the puck and rang in a shot off the post for his second of the night giving the Express their second lead of the game.



The Express took their 2-1 lead to the second period. And they have Lawson Fenton to thank for that who made 19 saves in the opening period.

The power play had three chances to help break the game open for the Express. But they had trouble breaking out of their own zone and setting up in the Surrey zone letting an opportunity to build on their lead slip away.

Eagles AP Owen Williams evened things up for the visitors late in the second period when his original shot off a won draw in the Express zone was blocked, but his second shot beat a surprised Lawson Fenton for his first BCHL goal to tie the game at two.

There was an ominous sign to open the third period. The red light behind Lawson Fenton was left on for the first few seconds of the period. Three minutes later the Eagles took their lone lead of the night when Darius Davidson slid a shot under the pads of Fenton for a 3-2 Eagles lead.

Captain Luca Leone returned to the lineup after missing the previous three games. He played a key role in the Express comeback. He set up Will Lawrence at the 6 minute mark who tied the game at three. For Lawrence it was his third goal in his last three games vs. Surrey. He also has four goals in his last five.



Devon Mussio - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Leone then picked the puck up off the dasher boards in the Surrey zone and set up Jake Toor who scored just over three minutes later giving the Express a 4-3 lead. The Express rookie has 5 goals this season, three of them have come vs. Surrey.

A late third period power play for the Express could have put the game away, but it wasn't meant to be. The Express finished 0 for 5 on the power play. But it was another perfect night on the penalty killing shutting down three Surrey powerplays.

The Express survived one final Surrey push and they held on for the win. Lawson Fenton finished with 37 saves for his 6th win of the season.

Friday the Express host the Chilliwack Chiefs. They will then head to Langley Saturday night. 

Sunday, January 22, 2017

TRAIL USES SECOND HALF SURGE TO DOUBLE EXPRESS


The Trail Smoke Eaters scored five unanswered goals in the final 23 minutes to double the Express 6-3 Saturday night. Click here for boxscore



The loss was the fourth straight by the Express. And for Trail it salvaged the final game of a three game Mainland division road trip after dropping the first two games in Surrey and Chilliwack.

Blake Hayward opened the scoring for the Express converting a saucer pass from Will Lawrence at 6:27. For Hayward it was his first goal since November 9th in Penticton.

Kale Howarth's one timer from the point on the power play teed up by Carter Cochrane tied the game at one just over 7 minutes later.

That was followed by a power play goal from the Express from an unlikely source, Hayward from the boards slid the puck back to Troy Robillard who snapped a wrist shot up over the shoulder of Zach Dyment for his first BCHL goal in his 54th career BCHL game giving the Express a 2-1 lead after one.

Midway through the second period the Express went up a pair on a Sam Kozlowski tip of a David Guinta point shot on the powerplay. The Express finished 2 for 6 on the power play.



That goal chased Trail goaltender Zach Dyment after three goals on 16 shots. Linden Marshall replaced Dyment and was perfect the rest of the way stopping all 9 Express shots sent his way in the second half of the game.

It was at this point Trail began to ramp up their pressure on the Express. Lawson Fenton did the best he could to fend off the pressure, but eventually Trail broke through.

Ryan Moon cut the Express lead to 3-2 re-directing Braedon Tuck's shot up over the glove of Fenton.

That goal sparked a frantic sequence on the Express zone. Josh Lafromboise rang a shot off the post. Then seconds later he didn't miss his spot beating Fenton with a wrist shot through a screen to tie the game at 3.


The late second period surge by Trail carried over to the third period.

Ethan Martini's shot from the left point beat a screened Lawson Fenton at 2:41 giving Trail the lead for good.

Five minutes later Troy Ring found a lane to the net open up and he cut to the net and slid the puck through the legs of Fenton for a 5-3 Trail lead. Korbyn Chabot then rounded out the scoring in the dying minutes walking out of the corner and dribbling a shot through the pads of Fenton.

Trail outshot the Express 42-25 and 29-16 in the final 40 minutes.

The Express return to action Wednesday when they host the Surrey Eagles who they have defeated three times in six meetings this season.



Friday, January 20, 2017

RIVERMEN 6 EXPRESS 2

Tory Robillard and Reid Cooper - Photo courtesy of Damon James
A fast start in the first 10 minutes for the Langley Rivermen put them on the right path to a 6-2 win over the Express Friday.

The Rivermen put the Express in a hole in the opening minute on a goal by Mckay Flanagan on just the second Langley shot just 35 seconds into the game.

Alex Ambrosio - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Langley owned the puck for the first few minutes of the game. Max Kaufman converted a pass from behind the Express net for a 2-0 Rivermen lead just over 7 minutes into the game. Zac Masson set up both Langley goals in the first 7 minutes. At one point in the first period the Rivermen had a 9-0 advantage in shots.

Will Lawrence got the Express on the board just 8 seconds into a power play burying the rebound of a David Giunta point shot. Those were the first two shots of the game for the Express just shy of the 9 minute mark of the first period.

One theme from Friday's game saw the Rivermen have a quick response just when it appeared the Express might be turning the game looking to mounting a come back.

Just 1:44 after Lawrence's goal the Rivermen re-stored their two goal lead thanks to Gavin Payne whose pass intended for Max Kaufman deflected off an Express defender and past Reid Cooper for a 3-1 Langley lead just past the 10 minute mark.



David Giunta struck at 11:11 of the second period when his point shot surprised Braedon Fleming to get the Express within one a second time at 3-2.  Ginuta finished with a goal and an assist.

D. Giunta had 1G, 1A
Photo courtesy of D. James
It was a challenge for the Express to consistently generate shots in the game. Late in the second period a penalty to Langley's Cooper Leitch presented an opportunity for the Express to even the game.

But again Gavin Payne killed those hopes. With just 7 seconds left in the second period he stole the puck off Reid Cooper and beat him back to the net for a shorthanded goal for a 4-2 Langley lead through 2 periods.

The timing of the shorthanded goal and considering the circumstances was too much for the Express to overcome on this night.

Langley put the finishing touches on the game with goals by Angus Crookshank and Cooper Leitch 19 seconds apart giving Langley a 6-2 lead.

The Express were only able to muster 12 shots in the game, Langley finished with 37.

One bright spot for the Express Friday was another strong night on the penalty killing which shut down all 5 Langley advantages.

Saturday night the Express will wrap up their 4 game week when they host the Trail Smoke Eaters. 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

CAPITALS @ COMETS HIGHLIGHTS

Highlights of the Coments 6-3 win over Cowichan Valley Friday.



Highlights courtesy of Jorge Parra & Underdog Productions.

COMETS SHINE IN 3RD PERIOD TO PULL AWAY FROM CAPS

Captain Luca Leone had 1G, 1A - Photo courtesy of Damon James
On Coquitlam Comets night the Express really began to shine as the game was hitting it's twilight in the third period in a 6-3 win over Cowichan Valley. Click here for boxscore

The win for the Express was their second in a row and third in their last six games. This mini two game winning streak is fairly impressive considering the Express schedule the last week that saw them play 6 games in 8 nights and their third game in the last three nights.

The Express did something to start that hasn't been a common occurrence this year and that's get off to a fast start. They opened up an early 5-0 lead in shots.

It wasn't long after that point that the Express opened the scoring. Luca Leone at the side of the Capitals night had his first shot blocked then chipped in the rebound for is 13th of the season.



Less than two minutes later Leone set up the 2-0 Express goal by Will Lawrence who snapped home his 5th of the season. Lawrence has goals in back to back games and three goals in his last six games.

Express mistakes in the second period allowed Cowichan Valley to claw back into the game in the second period.

Lawson Fenton made 28 saves - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Lawson Fenton trying to catch the Capitals on a change tried to quickly move the puck up the ice but fanned on his pass handing it right to Haydn Hopkins who scored a shorthanded goal at 2:41.

Then midway through the period a pass up the middle was picked off by Ayden MacDonald who ripped a wrist shot up over the blocker of Fenton from the slot.

Christian Bosa briefly restored the Express lead finding a loose puck at the side of the Caps net and scoring just his second of the season.

38 seconds later the game was tied again on Max Newton's 21st of the season.

After scoring three goals in the second period, the Caps could have taken control of the game with the Express getting themselves into penalty trouble. But the penalty killing for the Express continues to shine keeping the game tied. The Express had another perfect night on the penalty kill. They've been perfect on the PK in four of their last five games.

Midway through the second period it was the power play then making a difference for the Express.

Brandon Kennedy's point shot was tipped home by Mitch Newsome from the slot for a 4-3 Express lead. Newsome has goals in back to back games.

Will Lawrence finished with two goals - Photo courtesy of Damon James
With the lead in hand the Express settled into shutting down the Caps bids for the equalizer. Alex Ambrosio stole the puck at the Caps line and scored with just over 4 minutes to play for a 5-3 Express lead.

Then Will Lawrence iced the game for good on a late power play taking advantage of a puck handling gaffe by Adam Marcoux and he poked home his second of the game.The power play finished 2 for 4.


At the other end Lawson Fenton finished with 28 saves in the Express crease.

The Express return to action Monday night when they're in Wenatchee for a meeting on Martin Luther King day in the U.S.


Thursday, January 12, 2017

KENNEDY OT HERO FOR EXPRESS OVER EAGLES

Express defenceman Brandon Kennedy potted the overtime winner just 35 seconds into overtime giving the Express a 4-3 win over the Surrey Eagles.Click here for boxscore



The win gave the Express their second straight win over the Eagles.

The finish for the Express was much better than their start. Ty Westgard snapped a wrist shot past Lawson Fenton opening the scoring on Surrey's first shot just 34 seconds into the game.

Darius Davidson doubled Surrey's lead less than 6 minutes later for a 2-0 Eagles lead.

Surrey started 2000 born AP goaltender Lukas Shaw called up from the Greater Vancouver Canadians of the BC Major Midget league. He had his ups and downs in the game. He came close to ending up on a blooper reel, with the Eagles on the power play the Express sent the puck down the ice, Shaw came out of his net to sweep the puck away from an oncoming Blake Hayward and in the process Shaw nearly put the puck in his own net.

After the Express fell into the 2-0 hole Lawson Fenton really settled into the game allowing the Express to mount a come back. He made 18 saves in the second period keeping the Eagles lead at just two. His best saves of the period came off Ashton Calder with a right pad save on a shot from the slot. Then moments later another save off Desi Burgart with the glove on a close play in front of the net. Fenton finished with 39 saves.

Moments later David Guinta raced after a loose puck and split the Eagles defense and was hauled down and the Express defenseman was awarded a penalty shot. With the ice in poor conditions late in the period Giunta took no chances with a deke, he instead snapped a low and hard wrist shot off the post and in getting the Express on the board trailing 2-1 after 2 periods.

One of the best aspects of the Express game since their return from the Christmas break has been their penalty killing. It was sharp again Thursday killing off all 4 Surrey powerplays. Including a early power play for the Eagles in the third period. The Express have been perfect on the penalty kill in 4 of their last 5 games and have killed off 21 of 24 shorthanded situations in that time.

Eight minutes into the third period the Express pulled even. Alex Ambrosio set up Mitch Newsome who scored from the slot to tie the game at 2.

The tie only lasted 1:21. Jeffrey's Stewart's shot from the right wing went wide of the net and bounced off the boards to the other side of the net where Nick Fea quickly slid the puck across the crease back to Stewart who snapped it home for a 3-2 Eagles lead.

Another third period deficit didn't faze the Express. With just over 5 minutes to go Will Lawrence found a loose puck and roofed it over a sprawled out Shaw to tie the game at 3.

The Express had their chance to win it late in regulation with Paul McAvoy getting called for tripping. But they couldn't convert on the power play. Both teams finished 0 for 4 on the power play.

Overtime didn't last long, Mitch Newsome carried the puck into the Eagles zone and left the puck for Cal Babych who quickly zipped a pass over to Brandon Kennedy who tapped it home to give the Express the 4-3 overtime win. The goal by the Express defenseman wearing number 4 rekindled memories of Bobby Orr's most famous goal as Kennedy flew through the air while celebrating his overtime goal. 

Saturday, January 7, 2017

EAGLES @ EXPRESS HIGHLIGHTS

Highlights of the Express 5-2 win over Surrey Friday night.



Highlights courtesy of Jorge Parra and Underdog Productions. 

EXPRESS WIN!!


It was a way too long of a time coming. 24 games in fact, but the Express snapped their 23 game winless streak with a 5-2 win over Surrey Friday night.

During the streak the Express posted a 0-21-1-1 record. The road between victories was long, laborious and painful at times. And that's what made Friday's victory that much more satisfying when you consider what the team had endured. Prior to Friday the Express last tasted victory October 21st 5-4 vs. Wenatchee.

Alex Ambrosio - Photo courtesy of Damon James
The team was ravaged with injuries cutting into the depth and experience of the team. There were nights with up to 10 regulars out of the lineup and 5 or 6 affiliate players in the lineup as Barry Wolff tried to dress as full of a lineup as possible. Those challenges led to some long nights with some lopsided losses handed to the Express.

But now that streak is a thing of the past.

The seeds for this victory may have been planted when the Express returned from their Christmas break a week ago vs. Surrey. Some of the injured players started to slowly filter their way back in the lineup with the returns of Domenic Masellis, Mitch Newsome, Christian Bosa and Alex Ambrosio. Friday the Express got another key body back tonight with Cam Bertsch dressing for his first game since the home opener in early October.

Lawson Fenton made 36 saves  - Photo courtesy of Damon James

Bertsch's return had an immediate impact. His first shift of the game saw him block a shot and block a pass. That all set the tone for a strong night for the 20 year old forward. Bertsch didn't hit the scoresheet, but his finger prints were all over the game. He made some key defensive plays, used his speed to help get in on the forechek. It was pretty easy to see what the Express were missing in Bertsch.

Will Lawrence opened the scoring for the Express. He was in perfect position to steal a Surrey D to D pass and tuck the puck past Michael Botiz for Lawerence's 4th goal of the season.



Another Surrey turnover along the boards in the Surrey zone led to the second Express goal. Mitch Newsome then set up Alex Ambrosio who snapped a shot up over the glove of Botiz for 2-0 Express lead after the first period.

 Photo courtesy of Damon James
Surrey ramped up their game in the first half of the second period. Darius Davidson got the Eagles on the board in the opening minute beating Lawson Fenton with a wrist shot up over his glove.

The Eagles had the edge in play for the first 10 minutes of the period but Lawson Fenton shut the door to keep the Express in the lead. Fenton would finish with 36 saves for his third win of the season.

Midway through the second period the Express restored their two goal lead. On the power play Jake Brien unloaded a slap shot past Botiz for a 3-1 Express lead on Brien's 2nd goal of the season.



The line of Mitch Newsome, Alex Ambrosio and Cal Babych teamed up late in the second period to give the Express some insurance going into the third period. Newsome picked the puck off the boards and set up Ambrosio in the slot, his shot was blocked but the puck bounced right to Newsome who scored for a second straight game and a 4-1 lead.

The third period saw the Express focus on their play on the defensive side of the game to bring home the victory. Surrey made it a 4-2 game when Ty Westgard potted home a loose puck with 11 minutes to go. From there Surrey never really threatened to complete the come back.

Cal Babych sealed the win for the Express picking up his third point of the night on a empty net goal with just over two minutes remaining in the third period. Babych finished with one goal and two assists. His line along with Ambrosio and Newsome each picking up a goal and an assist help that unit combine for seven points with three goals and four assists.

The Express will hit the road this weekend for a pair of games against Island division foes the Powell River Kings and Cowichan Valley Capitals. 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

EAGLES @ EXPRESS HIGHLIGHTS

Highlights of the Eagles 4-3 win over the Express Friday night.


Highlights courtesy of Jorge Parra & Underdog Productions