Monday, March 11, 2019


Highlights of the Spruce Kings 4-2 win over the Express in game 5 of the Mainland division semi final to take the series.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019


Highlights of the Express 3-0 win over the Prince George Spruce Kings in game 4 of the Mainland division semi final Tuesday.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory.


The Coquitlam Express are going back to Prince George after keeping their season alive in game 4 with a 3-0 shutout win over the Prince George Spruce Kings. Clay Stevenson post his first career playoff shutout and Chase Danol scored a natural hat-trick in the winning cause.

With the season hanging on the line, the Express were challenged to have their best game of the series and everyone dug in all night to earn the victory.

Coquitlam had a better start in game 4 pushing the pace early which led to their first powerplay less than two minutes into the game. On the advantage Ty Westgard had a good chance to open the scoring on a one timer that went just wide of the net.

Troy Robillard came close to opening the scoring taking a centering pass from Alex DiPaolo then swatted it at the net only to be denied by Logan Neaton.

The Express physicality and overall heaviness of their game played a role in game 4. Alex DiPaolo delivered a few crunching hit and along with a few others. That left a few Prince George defenders looking over their shoulder a little more frequently going back for pucks wondering who in an Express jersey was coming at them.

There weren't many shots on either side in the first period with the Express generating 7 and Clay Stevenson turning aside 5 Spruce Kings shots.

Prince George came out quick in the opening 90 seconds of the second period. Clay Stevenson made a key save on a Dustin Manz one timer during that flurry.
Then all of a sudden the Express ramped their game up with a number of dominant puck possession shifts in the Spruce Kings end of the ice. That sequence didn't lead to many top notch chances, but certainly had the Spruce Kings chasing the game for a while.

Chase Danol has seen his offensive production from off from the first half of the season. That is in part due to a change in role after the trade deadline. But his strength on his stick with the puck and good hands was always still apart of his game that was going to show itself again.

It did Tuesday night with the Express season on the line. Midway through the 2nd period he finally broke the ice of the scoreless game. He found himself on an odd man chance with Jared Power. Danol was very patient holding on to the puck then finally lifting a backhand over Neaton for a 1-0 Express lead.

The penalty killing had a strong night limiting the quality chances for the Spruce Kings through the night.

The Express had to shut down a pair in the second period. Then after the play returned to 5 on 5 following a Christian Sanda high-sticking call, Prince George picked up their pace, but each time they ran into a dialled in Clay Stevenson. He was making key stops with quick pads, his glove was picking off hot shots sent his way. But the best save of the night isn't credited to the goaltender.

With 15 seconds left in the 2nd period a shot by Liam Watson-Brawn found its way airborne in the crease behind Stevenson and the puck was batted away fantastically by Pito Walton to save a goal and preserve the 1-0 Express lead after 40 minutes.

The Express entered the third period with their biggest test of the season. They had games in the third period where leads slipped away in the regular season and in game 2 of this series. Tuesday night they couldn't afford another meltdown or their season was done.

This time the Express were ready. When opportunities presented themselves they took advantage. Chong Min Lee was called for high sticking three minutes into the third period for the second Express powerplay of the night.

Again it was Danol showing good patience to extend the Express lead. With a loose puck at the side of the net Danol was able to bank the puck in off a downed Logan Neaton for his second of the night and a 2-0 Express lead.

Now it was time for the Express to really lock this one down. Danol was one of many making his contributions on the in the defensive zone as well. He got himself in a shooting lane to block a shot.

Then the last line of defence in Clay Stevenson was there to support the team in front of him. He made a great reaching glove save off Ben Poisson. There was also a sequence of three quick saves in tight that Stevenson was able to hold firm.

His best save came off Ben Brar with about 6 minutes left in the third period where the Spruce Kings power forward found himself all alone in the slot with the puck on his stick and Stevenson rushed out to challenge to make a stick save.  That save helped cement the 31 save performance for Stevenso's first BCHL playoff shutout.

Then in the final moments the Express heavy game helped seal the victory. Danol and Regan Kimens helped team up to work the puck deep along the boards in the Spruce Kings zone to kill some time off the clock.

In the final minute Pito Walton cleared the puck down the ice into the Spruce Kings zone and Chase Danol bumped Nick Bochen off the puck and put it into the empty net for the hat-trick.

The victory planted a seed of hope for the Express that has now started to sprout. They hope that seed grows just a little more when the series shifts to Prince George for game 5 Thursday night.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019


Highlights of the Spruce Kings 5-2 win over the Express in game 3 of the Mainland division semi final.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 


Prince George put the Express on the brink of elimination with a 5-2 win in game 3 of the Mainland division semi final to open a 3-0 series lead. Click here for boxscore

The visitors looked early on put the Express away early peppering Kolby Matthews with plenty of shots. Their reward came just shy of the 8 minute mark when the puck bounced to Chong Min Lee who tapped it home for a 1-0 Prince George lead.

Alex DiPaolo had the reply for the Express 5 minutes later burying the rebound of a Jack Cameron shot after the blue liner jumped down deep then finding a way to get the puck to the net.

That goal sparked a turn in the play which saw the Express finish strong and coming out of the period with a 14-13 advantage in shots.

Nick Poisson rushed into the Express zone then dished to his brother Ben who snapped a wrist shot just inside the post for a 2-1 Spruce Kings lead.

It was a little harder for the Express to generate scoring chances in the second after the first. But they scrapped their way to find the equalizer late in the period. Dallas Farrell found himself tangled up behind the play with Layton Ahac. The officials allowed it to continue until the players separated. Farrell then went to the net and slid home his first of the series to tie the game at 2.

The tie only lasted just 1:21 before Chong Min Lee found Ben Poisson who scored his second of the net for a 3-2 Prince George lead after 40.

One of two things was going to happen in the third period. Either the Express were going to play with  a sense of desperation with the hopes of avoiding a 3-0 series hole. Or Prince George was going to lull the game down the way a proven playoff team can. It was the latter that ended up occurring.

Layton Ahac scored on one timer at 8:40 for a two goal Prince George lead that may have felt like the Express had to scale Mount Everest in order to overcome.

When the Express did get pucks to the net Logan Neaton was there to quash any hopes as he finished with 30 saves.

Liam Watson-Brawn sealed the game with an empty net goal while the Express were on a 6 on 4 powerplay in the final minute of the game.

Game 3 was a pretty cleanly played game with each team only being assessed one penalty each, both coming in the third period.

Game 4 goes Tuesday night in Coquitlam with the Express hoping to extend their season to a game 5. 

Sunday, March 3, 2019


Highlights of the Spruce Kings game 2 overtime victory over the Express Saturday night.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Saturday, March 2, 2019


Heart break and or frustration is the prevailing feeling for the Express after dropping game 2 of the Mainland division semi final 3-2 in overtime to the Prince George Spruce Kings. The Express had a pair of third period leads, but came out of the game with nothing. Click here for boxscore

The Express got the early jump on Prince George taking the early 1-0 lead on the powerplay on Josh Wildauer's 1st of the series burying the rebound of a Chase Danol shot set up by a great cross ice pass from Dallas Farrell.

Jason Fortier tapped Kolby Matthews on the shoulder to start game 2. He turned aside the 7 first period Spruce Kings shots. Ben Poisson had the best chance for Prince George that didn't register as a shot on goal on a re-direct to start a Spruce Kings powerplay.

Early in the 2nd period Regan Kimens somehow couldn't convert a tap in opportunity at the side of the Spruce Kings net.

The Express did a good job in the 2nd period limiting the amount of time they spent defending in their own zone.

Ben and Nick Poisson had two of the best chances for Spruce Kings in the middle frame. Ben rang a shot off the goal post. Then Nick was robbed on a great glove save by Kolby Matthews.

Through 40 minutes the game was far from an entertaining affair. But the only thing that mattered at this point for the Express it was effective.

The solid defensive effort carried through to the midway mark of the third period.

Finally Prince George broke through off a won face-off in the Express zone. Chong Min Lee's shot went in off the stick of Danny Pearson who tried to tip it away from the net but inadvertently tipped it past Kolby Matthews to the tie game at 1.

Josh Wildauer scored his second of the night with just over 4 minutes left in the third period converting a pass out of the corner by Regan Kimens for a 2-1 Express lead.

Then with just under 90 seconds left in the third period Ty Westgard coming back into his own zone slashed the stick out of the hands of a Spruce Kings player which resulted in a 6 on 4 advantage following a Spruce Kings time out.

It only took 9 seconds for the Spruce Kings to tie it at 2 off the won face-off in the Express zone, Ben Brar re-directed Layton Ahac's shot with 1:33 to play sending the series to overtime for the first time.

Dustin Manz had the first good scoring chance of overtime but couldn't beat the pad of Kolby Matthews.

Then a loose puck was just sitting in a open Express crease, but was thankfully cleared away before an Spruce Kings player could get a stick on it.

Christian Sanda had a good chance for the Express in overtime chopping at a loose puck in the slot, but couldn't beat Logan Neaton who finished with 27 saves.

Then we had a rare occurrence in overtime. A fight between defensemen Jordan Schulting and Liam Watson-Brawn who were both automatically ejected midway through the period.

Controversy plagues the finish of this game. Troy Robillard fired a shot that was blocked at the point by Ben Brar. They then raced after the puck into the Express zone. Robillard appeared to reach with his stick and get a piece of the puck first before Brar goes down on the play. The Express captain however was whistled for the tripping penalty leaving the visitors furious.

Prince George was patient with their opportunity in overtime with Layton Ahac and Max Coyle playing catch with the puck at the point. Then Coyle let a shot got that was tipped home by Lucas Vanroboys for the winner and a 2-0 Spruce Kings lead in the series.

The Spruce Kings powerplay finished 2 for 5 on the night while the Express went 0 for 3.

39-29 was the shots on goal for Prince George.

The Express come home for game 3 Monday night down 2 games, but they certainly played well enough to put themselves in great shape to have at least come home with a split and maybe even a 2 game lead of their own. But that's playoff hockey. A play here, and a play there can make so much of a difference.

Monday night the Express will hope that home ice for game 3 will help turn some of their fortunes of what has been a very tight series so far. 


Highlights of the Spruce Kings 3-1 win over the Express in game 1 of the Mainland division semi final.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Friday, March 1, 2019


Game 1 of the Mainland division semi final between the Express and the Spruce Kings went as most people expected, a low scoring affair that saw the BCHL's top defensive team come out on top 3-1 to take a 1-0 series lead in the best of 7. Click here for boxscore

The first period was a penalty filled affair. Prince George got the early jump on the Express scoring on their first powerplay on a cross ice one timer that was buried by Nick Poisson past Clay Stevenson.

Logan Neaton at the other end made some his best saves of the first period with the Express on the powerplay. Most notably denying Chase Danol on a rebound chance.

The Express couldn't strike on their first three powerplays of the opening period. Their 4th came late in the frame. Regan Kimens was denied twice on cross ice passes late in the opening period.

10-10 was the shot count after the first period.

Connor Gregga scored your typical type playoff goal in the opening minute of the 2nd period jamming a puck under Logan Neaton to tie the game at 1 just 45 seconds into the period.

Josh Wildauer came close to the giving the Express their first lead of the night on a rebound chance in close that was shut down by Neaton.

Layton Ahac put Prince George back in the lead just under 4 minutes after Gregga's goal with a shot from the left wing boards that sailed over the glove of Clay Stevenson.

That goal sparked a flurry of activity that saw Patrick Cozzi fan on a shot on a great chance in the slot.

Regan Kimens then delivered one of the best hits of the night in the neutral zone, then watched the play go into the Express end where Clay Stevenson made a glove save off Ben Brar.

Jordan Schulting rang a shot off the goal post with 4 minutes left in the 2nd period.

The second goal of the night was one probably Clay Stevenson would want to have back. But he responded afterwards with some of his best saves of the night to this point. He made a marvellous glove save off Nick Poisson to keep it just a 2-1 game through 2 periods.

Prince George put the clamp down on the game in the third period liming the Express to just 4 shots and they finished the game with 22 on the night.

Clay Stevenson kept the Express one shot away with a breakaway save off Dustin Manz on a shorthanded opportunity.

Manz got his revenge in the final minute sealing the game with an empty net goal.

Prince George outshot the Express 29-22. The Express went 1 for 5 on the powerplay while the Spruce Kings went 1 for 3.

Game 2 of the series goes Saturday night in Prince George.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019


Graphic by Jacob Lazare

EXPRESS – 28-24-3-3, 62 Pts., 3rd in Mainland division, 9thoverall in BCHLSPRUCE KINGS – 39-13-1-5, 84Pts., 2ndin Mainland division, 2ndoverall in BCHL 
Spruce Kings - 6-2
Sep. 14 @ PG 5-3 Spruce Kings
Sep. 15 @ PG 3-0 Spruce Kings
Sep. 30 @ CQ 3-1 Express
Oct. 19 @ CQ 5-4 OT Spruce Kings
Oct. 21 @ CQ 5-3 Express
Jan. 25 @ PG 4-3 SO Spruce Kings
Jan. 26 @ PG 6-1 Spruce Kings
Feb. 8 @ CQ 4-2 Spruce Kings
Express – 3-5-1-1, 8 points
Spruce Kings – 9-1-0-0, 18 points
209 GF, 6th
198 GA, 10th
Diff. +11, 8th
Spruce Kings
181 GF, 10th
120 GA, 1st
Diff. +61, 1st
PP – 20.2% - 9th- 55PPG for T-4th
PK – 77.5% - 12th - 50 PPGA -10th
Spruce Kings
PP – 19.7% - 11th – 47 PPG for - 11th
PK – 82.7% - 4th - 32 PPGA - 2nd
CQ PP – 6/32 – 18.75%
PG PK – 26/32 – 81.25% - 5 SHG's for
PG PP – 10/35 – 28.57%
CQ PK – 25/35 – 71.42% - 2 SHG's for
Express – 3-3 OT – 2-3 SO
Spruce Kings – 2-1 OT – 1-5 SO
Regan Kimens – 54GP, 20G, 35A, 55PTS
Ty Westgard – 42GP, 15G, 37A, 52PTS
Josh Wildauer – 57GP, 25G, 26A, 51PTS
Alex DiPaolo – 53GP, 16G, 32A, 48PTS
Connor Gregga – 54GP, 21G, 22A, 43PTS
Dustin Manz – 58GP, 33G, 37A, 70PTS
Ben Brar – 57GP, 35G, 26A, 61PTS
Patrick Cozzi – 58G, 14G, 44A, 58PTS
Ben Poisson – 53GP, 20G, 26A, 46PTS
Nick Bochen – 57GP, 8G, 30A, 38PTS
Kolby Matthews – 34GP, 14-16-2, 3.00 GAA, .900 Sv.%, 1SO
Clay Stevenson – 27GP, 14-11-1, 3.36GAA, .889 Sv.%, 2SO
Logan Neaton – 47GP, 32-8-5, 1.92GAA, .914 Sv.%, 5SO
Keenan Rancier – 11GP, 5-2-1, 3.26GAA, .886 Sv.%, 0SO
Regan Kimens – 3G, 5A, 8PTS
Alex DiPaolo – 2G, 5A, 7PTS
Josh Wildauer – 2G, 4A, 6PTS
Christian Sanda – 2G, 4A, 6PTS
Chase Danol – 3G, 2A, 5PTS
Dallas Farrell – 1G, 4A, 5PTS
Pito Walton – 1G, 4A, 5PTS
Ben Brar – 8G, 6A, 14PTS
Dustin Manz – 8G, 4A, 12PTS
Dylan Anhorn – 1G, 7A, 8PTS
Patrick Cozzi – 3G, 4A, 7PTS
Nick Bochen – 1G, 6A, 7PTS
Liam Watson-Brawn – 2G, 4A, 6PTS
Ben Poisson – 2G, 3A, 5PTS
Kolby Matthews – 1-1-1-1, 2.91 GAA, .910 Sv.%
Clay Stevenson – 1-3, 4.01 GAA, .884 Sv.%
Logan Neaton – 4-1, 2.75 GAA, .888 Sv.%

Saturday, February 23, 2019


Clay Stevenson made 18 saves for his second shutout of the season and former Surrey Eagle Ty Westgard scored twice and added an assist in his return to the South Surrey Arena in a 7-0 Express win over the Eagles to end the regular season.

This game marked the first time that Ty Westgard and Aaron White returned to the South Surrey Arena since being acquired by the Express at the trade deadline. Those two along with another former Surrey Eagle Chase Danol all were in the starting lineup thanks to Head Coach Jason Fortier.

The bench boss wanted to see his team start with purpose in the regular season finale. He got exactly that from his group which was rewarded 90 seconds into the game by Regan Kimens who opened the scoring on his 20th of the season.

That was the only goal in the first period. The other notable moment of the opening 20 minutes was the media timeout where the Eagles acknowledged the 160 games that Ty Westgard dressed in an Eagles uniform.

All night long the Express played with a little extra jump in their step, they picked up their physical play for one of their more impressive outings in recent weeks. That allowed them to remain in control of the game.

PIto Walton jumped into the rush and beat Cayden Bailey with a backhand for his 8th of the season and a 2-0 Express lead just shy of the 5 minute mark of the second period.

Then Alex DiPaolo found himself walking in from centre ice on a breakaway and ripped a shot over Bailey's shoulder for a 3-0 Express lead.

From this point, the former Eagles started to get in on the fun. Chase Danol picked up a loose puck in the slot after a won Christian Sanda face-off and snapped home his 22nd of the season for a 4-0 lead 1:20 after DiPaolo's goal.

Ty Westgard picked up an assist on Walton's goal in the second period. He started to fill the net early in the 3rd period, taking a pass out from behind the net and tucked in his first of the night to open up a 5-0 Express lead.

By this point the Express were dominating the Eagles in puck possession, and the third period was owned by the visitors.

Christian Sanda finished off the prettiest goal of the night sliding home a Chase Danol backhand pass after Jared Power turned from the boards to dish to Danol coming late.

Westgard then added his 2nd of the night less than a minute later to complete a three point night in his return to Surrey.

The Express finished with a season best 53 shots on goal and posted a season low of 18 shots allowed.

The Eagles capped off a classy night despite being on the wrong end of the score by naming Chase Danol the second star and giving Ty Westgard first star honours.

The win officially secured third place in the Mainland division for the Express and they will face the Prince George Spruce Kings in the first round of the playoff starting next Friday in Prince George. The teams last met in the playoffs in 2014. 

Thursday, February 21, 2019


Highlights of Vernon's 4-1 win over the Express Wednesday.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 


Vernon scored twice in the first and twice in the second period to open up a 4-0 lead and cruised the rest of the way to a 4-1 victory over the Express Wednesday in Vernon. Click here for boxscore

The Vipers have been one of the BCHL's better teams since the Christmas break and that showed right off the bat jumping on the Express peppering Express goaltender Clay Stevenson with the games first 6 shots. Credit to Stevenson who looked sharp right from the get go.

Jared Power generated the Express first shot of the night taking a quick pass and unleashing a quick one timer that was stopped by Aidan Porter who made his best save of the opening frame coming to his left.

Cooper Connell came close to opening the scoring by sliding a low wrist shot that caught the outside of the post.

Vernon's pressure on the puck in the Express zone forced the visitors to possibly move it quicker than they wanted to. That would translate to Vernon chances. Late in the period they broke through digging a puck off the boards then Colton Bilodeau jamming the puck to the net under the pad of Clay Stevenson to open the scoring.

In the final seconds of the period a Josh Wildauer pass bounced off the skate of a Vipers player back into the Express zone allowing Teddy Wooding to walk in on a breakaway where he slid the puck inside the post and pad of Stevenson for a 2-0 Express lead after 1.

The Express had a strong start to the second period, but it didn't take long for the Vipers to start tilting the ice back to the other end.

Logan Cash broke it from the left wing and slid a shot through Stevenson at 2:23 later.

At this point despite getting beat three times, Clay Stevenson was facing a number of quality chances and minimizing the Vernon damage.

Trey Taylor made it a 4-0 lead at 8:43 as the puck rolled back to him at the left point where his shot surprised Stevenson and the puck flied over his shoulder and in. The 4-0 goal brought and end to Stevenson's night after 20 shots. Or so he thought.

Kolby Matthews came off the bench after the 4th Vernon goal. He would only last 3 minutes however. Ben Sanderson found himself alone in front of the Express net before Pito Walton realized the uncovered forward and rushed back and levelled Sanderson, but in the process shoving Sanderson right on top of Kolby Matthews who was hurt immediately. Matthews would leave the game after facing just 3 Vipers shots and Stevenson was forced back into action.

Stevenson took advantage of the opportunity for some semblance of redemption shutting the door the rest of the way turning aside 10 more Vernon shots.

Drew Cooper broke Aidan Porter's shutout bid 7 minutes into the third period one timing a drop pass from Alex DiPaolo for his 5th of the season.

The loss prevented the Express from locking down third place in the Mainland division. That can still be done if the Express pick up two points in their final game of the season in Surrey Friday. Langley can still jump into third if the Express lose their final game in any manner and the Rivermen sweep their final three games of the season vs. Merritt and a home and home with Surrey. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2019


David Clarkson, a veteran of 570 NHL games is out in Coquitlam this week as a guest of Express Head Coach Jason Fortier.

He provided some great insight into how he enjoys being able to give back to youth hockey following his NHL career.

Monday, February 11, 2019


Highlights of Wenatchee's 4-3 overtime win over the Express Sunday.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Sunday, February 10, 2019


Wenatchee scored twice in the final minutes of the third period then Murphy Stratton won it in overtime in a stunning come from behind 4-3 win over the Express. The loss for the Express was their 8th straight and 10th in their last 11 games. Click here for boxscore

It took a little while for the Express to adapt to the style of a Wild team who dressed just 15 skaters. Kolby Matthews held Wenatchee at bay to keep the game scoreless highlighted by a breakaway save off Christophe Fillion.

That save helped spark the Express who began to ramp up their game. During this run for the Express many of their top offensive producers have collectively gone into slumps. One of those players was Connor Gregga. But the first year forward busted his funk in spectacular fashion. He took a pass in stride from Jared Power then cut around a Wild defender then slid home his 19th of the season for a 1-0 Express lead. For the Minnesota State committed forward it was his first point in 8 games.

The lead stood into the latter minutes of the second period when it was extended by Jack Cameron who picked up the puck just inside the Wild blueline and slid a low shot under Austin Park on Cameron's 3rd of the season and a 2-0 Express lead.

It was a defenceman at the other end who would help cut the lead in half just 46 seconds later. Brandon Koch's point shot was tipped in front of by Nathan Iannone past Matthews to cut the Express lead to 2-1 after 2 periods.

With the one goal lead in the third period the Express were in playing well during the frame protecting it. Josh Wildauer is another Express veteran who had gone into a slump recently. But he brought an inspired effort to the rink Sunday. He was diligent and hard on the puck all game long.

Wildauder got tangled up with Jacob Modry behind the Wild net behind the play. When the players separated Wildauer hustled out of the zone to get back on side as the Express came up ice. He got out of the zone in time to take a pass then leave it for a speeding Christian Sanda who scored on a backhand for what appeared to be a big insurance goal with 5:27 to play. Sanda snapped his 13 game goalless drought in the process.

It was shortly after this goal that Wenatchee put on one final desperate push. The Express appeared to be holding it off well.

Then the tables turned with 2 minutes to play. Juliano Santalucia was hit from behind deep in his own zone and was shaken up on the play but no penalty was called. Jordan Schulting came to the defence of his fallen teammate but he came out of the sequence as the only player penalized.

Wenatchee scored right away on the powerplay with a point shot from Chad Sasaki with 1:41 left in the third period to cut the lead to 3-2.

Sasaki then played a role in the equalizer saucing a pass to the Express line that was knocked down by Marko Reifenberger who scored in a breakaway with exactly a minute to go to tie the game at 3.

The stunned Express appeared to shake off the effect of the two quick goals once the game went to overtime.

Pito Walton in the opening minute found himself alone in front of the net but was stoned in tight by Austin Park. Then Jack Cameron was stopped on a 2 on 1 a minute later. Walton was denied a second time of the overtime winner on a rebound chance of a Connor Gregga shot.

In the final minute the Wild got their chance after a Christian Sanda pass back for Josh Bruce eluded the Express forward allowing Murphy Stratton to walk in on a breakaway and he made no mistake beating Kolby Matthews on a backhand to give the Wild the 4-3 win.

Sunday's game was the final home game for the Express in the regular season. They will play their final 4 games on the road in Powell River, Cowichan Valley, Vernon and Surrey. 

Saturday, February 9, 2019


Liam Watson-Brawn scored a shorthanded goal with 2:21 remaining in the third period that stood as the game winning goal in the Spruce Kings 4-2 win over the Express Friday.

In what is becoming an all too familiar theme, the Express had a solid outing against one of the top teams in the BCHL, but the result just didn't go their way.

The Express played fast in the first period not allowing the Spruce Kings to clamp down on the Express at the other end. However despite the strong play, the reward wasn't there again for the Express to get the lead for the first time in 7 games.

Ben Brar opened the scoring on the first Spruce Kings powerplay of the night. He buried the rebound after a shot from the slot from Nick Poisson was kicked out by Clay Stevenson.

Some of the best chances for either team in the second period came when they were shorthanded. Prince George had multiple two on one opportunities with Lucas Vanroboys in the box, but Clay Stevenson shut the door each time.

At the other end Logan Neaton got his left pad down to prevent Jared Power to score on a shorthanded breakaway with Dallas Farrell in the box. Power would get his revenge however off the ensuing face-off just two seconds later swiping a puck past Logan Neaton to tie the game at 1.

When you have two teams going head to head late in the season knowing there's a good chance they will face-off against one another in the playoffs, there's bound to be some animosity displayed on both sides. The Express showed some jam getting in the grill of a number of Spruce Kings players during a testy second period.

Entering the third period of a 1-1 game, one would hope that the players would be allowed to decide such a competitive game.

That however was not the case. Just past the 5 minute mark of the third period Cooper Connell was whistled for a holding call on what appeared to be a good hard play to come back for the puck at the Prince George blueline.

Nick Poisson scored on that powerplay just 5 seconds later for a 2-1 Spruce Kings lead.

By the time Lucas Vanroboys was whistled for high sticking midway through the period, there was plenty of frustration on both sides with the penalties that were being handed out during the course of the game.

Pito Walton scored a wrist shot on the powerplay to pull the Express even at 2.

With 2:30 left to play in the third period Chong Min Lee was whistled for tripping setting up the most important powerplay for either side on the night.

Right from the draw that was won by the Express, Spruce Kings defenceman Liam Watson-Brawn jumped on the loose puck and rushed the puck into the Express zone and from his off wing snapped a shot past the glove of Clay Stevenson for the third Prince George lead of the night.

Dustin Manz sealed the game in the final minute for Prince George with an empty net goal.

For the Express it was a season high 7th straight loss and 9th loss in the last 10 games.

They will host the Wenatchee Wild on Sunday afternoon. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2019


The Express 2001 expansion cousins the Salmon Arm Silverbacks handed the Express a 2-1 shootout loss as the Express opened a two game Interior division road trip. Click here for boxscore

Getting out of the Mainland division did little for the Express to find a way to get their offensive engine up and running again.

The chances for the Express were there in the first period, but the execution on the finish wasn't there as Ethan Laggennagger turned aside 12 first period Express shots.

Clay Stevenson was solid in the first period with 7 saves on 8 shots. The only puck to beat him was a goal from 16 year old John Little who kept up his hot play when a puck bounced from behind the Express net to Little in front of the net who scored for the only goal of the first period.

The shots in the second period showed the Silverbacks outshot the Express 15-3, I personally don't think they were quite that lopsided in a period with few top end chances for either team.

The Express finally broke through on a third period powerplay when Clay Stevenson quickly moved the puck up ice to Ty Westgard who skated into the zone then dropped a pass for Regan Kimens who scored his 18th of the season to tie the game at 1.

That goal sparked a push for the Express to finish the third period but they couldn't get another puck past Laggennagger in regulation.

In overtime the Express had the better of the chances which included a breakaway for Ty Westgard that was stopped. Plus Jordan Schulting undressed a couple of Silverbacks, but he too couldn't win the game for the Express.

Clay Stevenson at the other end turned aside both Silverbacks shots in overtime. He finished with 31 saves.

The shootout was decided ASAP. Dallas Farrell and Ty Westgard were stopped on their attempts while Nick Unruh and Matthew Verboon scored for Salmon Arm and the shootout was decided after 2 rounds.

The Express are now 2-3 in shootouts (all on the road) and have dropped their last three games that have gone to a shootout.

The mid-week road trip will wrap up in Merritt on Wednesday. 

Monday, February 4, 2019


Highlights of Langley's 1-0 win over the Express Saturday night.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Sunday, February 3, 2019


Kolby Matthews has had some of best games of the season in Langley. Saturday night was no different, but like the previous two games, Matthews and the Express ended up on the losing end. This time 1-0 on Saturday night. Click here for boxscore

Matthews counterpart on the other end Braedon Fleming posted his 3rd shutout against the Express this season. Langley finished the season with a 7-1 record against the Express this season.

Saturday's game was no different than plenty of other Express games in recent weeks that was a tight checking, playoff style contest.

It didn't take long to become clear that both goaltenders were going to be difficult to beat.

Kolby Matthews in particular made first period saves on William Stromp on a a 2 on 0 break, then a snapshot save followed by a wraparound save both on Langley forward Bronson Sharp. Matthews then capped off a 10 save first period with two more great saves off Bronson Sharp.

Fleming at the other end turned aside all 8 first period Express shots.

It was more of the same in the second period with the goaltenders going toe to toe.

Alex DiPaolo was hooked as he cut to the net but was still able to get a backhand shot away that was stopped by Fleming. The hook resulted in an Express powerplay. On the advantage the Express struggled to set up the quality chances they wanted.

Then in the dying seconds of the powerplay the puck was flipped back to the Express line where Bronson Sharp was able to get away from Pito Walton then drop a pass back to Jake Livingstone who was stopped by Matthews with another great save, but Livingstone buried the rebound for a shorthanded goal to open the scoring. It was Langley's BCHL leading 11th shorthanded goal of the season.

Kolby Matthews continued to hold firm into the third period keeping the Express within striking distance. But at the other end the Express weren't able to generate many top end chances on Braedon Fleming. With 8 minutes left in the 3rd period Alex DiPaolo was set up on a backdoor pass, but couldn't lift the puck over the shoulder of Fleming who hustled to his right to make the save.

Late in the third period Matthews made another sparking save on Bronson Sharp who saw more than enough of the Express goaltender at his best Saturday night.

The Express got one final shot for the equalizer late in the third period when Ryan Helliwell was called for tripping Regan Kimens with just over two minutes to play.

On the powerplay the Express decided against pulling Matthews for a two man advantage. Fleming capped off his shutout with a one timer save on Connor Gregga with 30 seconds left and then shutting the door on Christian Sanda on the rebound.

Fleming finished with 19 saves for the shutout. Matthews made 32 saves in the losing cause. He's unfortunate to not pick up a win in 3 games in Langley this season where he was fantastic in every single game and allowing only 3 goals on Langley's home ice. Langley has pulled within two points of the Express for 3rd place in the Mainland division with 8 games remaining on the schedule for the Express.

The Express hit the road for a pair of Interior division games this week in Salmon Arm and Merritt Tuesday and Wednesday. 

Saturday, February 2, 2019


Highlights of the Chiefs 4-2 win over the Express.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 


Matt Holmes scored a pair of powerplay goals in the third period which ended up being the difference in the Chiefs 4-2 victory over the Express Friday. Click here for boxscore

The win finished the season series between the two teams which both teams won 4 games. Chilliwack gets the slight edge by picking 9 points head to head against the Express who had 8.

Clark Nelson scored the only goal of the first period following a turnover by the Express inside the Chiefs blue line allowing the Chiefs to go the other way and Nelson snapped a shot short side past the pad of Kolby Matthews. That would be the only goal of a first period that saw Chilliwack outshoot the Express 13-4.

The Express picked their game up in the second period, and right away they were rewarded. Regan Kimens' pass hit the stick of a Chiefs player and the puck just crossed the goal line to tie the game at one.

From there, the Express rode that goal and carried the play to start the second period. Jared Power and Ty Westgard appeared to have a great chance shaping up as they rushed over the blueline, but Power inexplicably dropped the puck back instead of giving it to Westgard who would have a great chance, the drop pass allowed Kevin Wall to go the other way and snap a shot over the glove of Kolby Matthews for the Chiefs second lead of the night.

Power made up for it by taking a Jordan Schuting pass and blasting a one timer over the glove of Daniel Chenard to tie the game at 2. If you combine Power's goals 11 goals with Grande Prairie and 9 with the Express he now has 20 on the season.

This game was similar to a lot of recent outings for the Express that was tight with both teams having to fight for find any open ice.

Josh Bruce was whistled for a double minor high sticking penalty with 7 minutes left in the second period. That was shaping up to be a key moment for the Express by killing off the 4 minutes in penalties pretty effectively.

Chilliwack pushed the pace to open the third period, that combined with some turnovers coming out of the defensive zone the Express eventually were penalized.

With Juliano Santalucia in the box for slashing, Matt Holmes scored from the top of the right circle  to give the Chiefs 3-2 lead.

The best chances for the Express to tie came on a powerplay midway through the period. First Alex DiPaolo was denied by Chenard as DiPaolo tired to slide it home on the backhand.

Then DiPaolo was stopped by Chenard on a good setup in the slot.

Santalucia was whistled for his second penalty of the third period for kneeing with 1:58 remaining in the 3rd period.

Matt Holmes sealed the game with his second of the night with just 51 seconds remaining in the game. The Chiefs finished 2 for 5 on the powerplay while killing off 3 Express powerplays.

The Express have now lost 5 of their last 6 games. They will visit Langley on Saturday night where the Express will look for just their 2nd victory of the season vs. the Rivermen.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019


Coquitlam Express captain and defenceman Troy Robillard has committed to the University of Alaska Anchorage for next season.

Robillard, a Coquitlam native is the longest serving member of the Express in his 4th season with the team.

This season he has 1 goal and 12 assists for 13 points in 36 games. In 17-18 Robillard dressed in all 58 games and put up a career best 5 goals and 21 assists for 26 points. In 157 career games Robillard has 7 goals and 39 assists for 46 points.

The Express now have 13 players on their roster with an NCAA commitment. 6 players have secured their commitment during the 18-19 season. Only the Penticton Vees with 16 have more NCAA committed players than the Express in the entire BCHL.

Congratulations Troy. 

Sunday, January 20, 2019


Highlights of Langley's 2-1 shootout win over the Express Saturday night.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory.

Saturday, January 19, 2019


It took seven rounds of the shootout, but the Langley Rivermen eventually prevailed for a 2-1 win over the Express to complete a weekend sweep of the home and home between the teams. Click here for boxscore

Like the night before in Coquitlam it was a tight affair all night long.

Josh Wildauer scored what would turn out to be the lone goal of the night for the Express taking a cross ice feed from Ty Westgard then roofing a shot over the shoulder of Shayne Battler for a powerplay goal just 2:17 into the game.

Connor Gregga nearly made it a 2-0 Express lead with a chance from his off wing just over three minutes later, but was stonewalled by Battler.

Kolby Matthews held Langley at bay through two periods with 23 saves after 40 minutes.

Langley finally broke through on a brief two man advantage in the third period. Following a won face-off in the Express zone Rivermen defensemen Jake Livingstone and Alec Capstick would switch spots at the top, then Livingstone would walk in and blast a slapshot past Matthews to tie the game at 1.

Both teams played the rest of regulation playing very tight to the vest.

Early in overtime Connor Gregga poked the puck past a Rivermen defenceman to spring a breakaway only to be denied by Battler as Gregga tried to go five hole.

Shortly thereafter last night's hero for Langley Tanner Versluis was whistled for a hooking penalty.

After call his timeout, Jason Fortier sent out four forwards to work the powerplay. There were numerous chances to win it. Jared Power had trouble handling a pass at the side of the net which may have resulted in the winner for the Express if the pass was handled cleanly. Regan Kimens was denied on a jam play in the crease and Connor Gregga put a one timer wide of the net.

Overtime solved nothing as the Rivermen finished the game outshooting the Express 31-24.

It was the third shootout for the Express while it was Langley's first time this season.

The Express emerged from round 1 with the advantage after Trevor Ayre was stopped by Matthews and Chase Danol scored his 3rd shootout goal this season.

The story in the shootout was the Express inability to put the Rivermen away. Jared Power was stopped in round 2 which would have won the game for the Express.

Mark Gallant in round 3 scored to keep Langley alive. But then Connor Gregga had a chance to win on the Express third shot but couldn't beat Shayne Battler.

That theme would continue into extra shooters as Dallas Farrell, Christian Sanda and Ty Westgard all were stopped by Battler with chances to win the game for the Express.

Then Chase Pletzkie put the pressure on the Express scoring in round 7 with a shot over the glove of Kolby Matthews. Then defenceman Jordan Schulting was stopped on his must score shot and Langley sealed the win.

Langley has now won 6 of 7 meetings with the Express this season.

The Express will visit the Chilliwack Chiefs on Wednesday night.


Highlights of Langley's 3-2 win over the Express Friday night.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 


Tanner Versluis scored with 1:23 left in the third period to give the Langley Rivermen a 3-2 win over the Express. Click here for boxscore

The win improved Langley to 5-1 vs. the Express this season.

In the first 5 games of the 6 game home stand for the Express the games were more wide open which allowed the Express to pile up the offence with 4 wins in 5 games.

Friday was a lock it down, fight for your ice tight game where it matched the Express skill against the Rivermen will.

The Express bent in the opening half of the first period, but never broke and moments after killing off a Juliano Santalucia penalty, Ty Westgard set up Pito Walton in the slot whose shot was stopped by Braedon Fleming, but Regan Kimens buried the rebound to open the scoring.

Dallas Farrell kept up his productive play on this home stand taking feed in the slot and ripping a powerplay goal over the shoulder of Fleming for a 2-0 Express lead after 1.

Langley outshot the Express 12-10 in the first period, then in the second the Express tightened up their game in the second to the tune of opening a 8-0 lead in shots in the middle frame. But Fleming shut the door on the Express.

Once Langley got in position for their first shot late in the period, Daneel Lategan quickly rushed up the ice after the Express turned the puck over at the attacking blueline and Lategan's shot was stopped by Matthews but the rebound was buried by Riley Lanthier to make it a 2-1 game.

The third period set up for the Express needing to clamp down against a Langley team that used their physicality to slow down the skill of the Express. It was going to require finding a way to fight through the tight checking of the Rivermen to seal the win.

But slowly the Rivermen wore down the Express as the period ticked down.

At 12:22 Juliano Santalucia battling a bouncing puck in the Express zone eventually ended up behind the Express net where it was quickly fed out front to Daneel Lategan who tied it.

The chances for the Express in the third period were limited. Their best opportunity came to the stick of Christian Sanda who was stopped in tight with about 3 minutes to play.

Moments later Pito Walton was whistled for closing his hand on the puck after scooping a rebound off Kolby Matthews giving Langley a late powerplay.

Following a Langley time out a shot from the point by Jake Livingstone hit the glass then created a scramble opportunity for Tanner Versluis to jam in loose puck at the side for the Express net with 1:23 to play and the first Langley lead of the night at 3-2.

The Express did pull Matthews for the extra attacker and created scramble opportunities in the crease, but Fleming held on as he shut the door with 17 saves in the final 40 minutes to allow his team to claw back for the win.

Langley improved to 5-1 vs. the Express this season. The teams meet again Saturday night in Langley. 

Friday, January 18, 2019


Carlo Finucci was a member of the 2006 RBC cup champion Burnaby Express. Then in his 3rd season in the league he was the first player in Express history to win the BCHL scoring title with 102 points.
He then went on to a 4 year NCAA career with the University of Alaska Nanooks. He then went professional that included a stop in the ECHL with Las Vegas. He's now playing pro hockey in the EIHL with the Fife Flyers in Scotland where he's teammates with another member of the 06 Express Paul Crowder.


Highlights of the Express 6-5 OT win over Surrey Wednesday.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2019


Dallas Farrell scored twice including the overtime winner as the Express won for a 4th time in 5 games, 6-5 over Surrey.  Click here for boxscore

The win comes despite the best efforts of former Express Jake Toor who scored his first BCHL hat-trick.

Like Sunday vs. Alberni Valley, the Express came out fast forcing the Eagles to struggle to keep up.

Connor Gregga opened the scoring converting a Jordan Schulting setup from the slot just shy of the 8 minute mark. Gregga's goal came after he fanned a great chance in the slot 20 seconds previous.

At the time of the goal the Express had a 7-0 advantage in shots. Surrey didn't register their first shot until 20 seconds after Gregga's goal. The shots finished 15-6 in favour of the Express.

An early second period defensive lapse allowed Jake Toor to find himself alone in front of Clay Stevenson and Toor slid home his first of the afternoon.

The goal gave Surrey jump and 1:23 later it was a 2-1 Surrey lead on a goal from Corey Clfiton snapping a shot past Stevenson following an Express turnover at the offensive blueline.

The spark Surrey received following the two quick goals set the stage for 90 seconds of Surrey pressure in the Express zone which very nearly resulted in a 3-1 Surrey lead.

Wednesday was the first time that Ty Westgard and Aaron White for the Express and Cole Edgerton for Surrey faced their former teams following the trade last Wednesday.

It was Westgard scoring his first Express goal on a scramble in front of the Surrey net for a powerplay goal to tie the game at 2.

That goal appeared to spark the Express who picked up their pace again and soon took their second lead of the game on a goal from Jared Power who snapped his 7th of the season after taking a Ty Westgard drop pass. The former Eagles captain finished with one goal and an assist against his former team. White and Edgerton didn't register points.

Dallas Farrell then capped off three Express goals in 4:24 taking a feed on the right wing and ripping a shot short side over the glove of Cole Dolan to give the Express a 4-2 lead.

The two goal lead appeared to be safe heading into the third period, then Jake Toor struck again. He hustled after a loose puck deep in the corner as the period was winding down and banked in his second of the game with one second left in the period.

Toor then capped off his first BCHL hat-trick in the opening minute of the third period hustling after  a puck that was flipped into the Express zone then snapping a shot through the pads of Clay Stevenson to tie the game at 4.

Reigning BCHL player of the week Regan Kimens did his part to help shake off the pesky Eagles. He took a pass from behind the net from Alex DiPaolo and snapped home his 15th of the season.

Midway through the period Holden Katzalay was whistled for a double minor high sticking penalty on Kabir Gill. And despite Express pressure, they couldn't extend their lead. They almost gave up the equalizer on the powerplay when Riley Hayles put a shot off the goal post on a two on one with Toor.

Corey Clifton tied the game at 5 with just over three minutes to play snapping a shot from the left wing boards that beat Stevenson on the short side.

The goal ensured for a 3rd time in 4 games the Express would go to overtime.

Holden Katzalay nearly won it for Surrey in the opening minute on a redirection in front of Clay Stevenson.

The first good chance for the Express was a backdoor pass by Josh Wildauer on the tape of Dallas Farrell, but the forward couldn't get the puck up high enough on Dolan who made the glove save.

Farrell wouldn't miss on a second chance moments later converting a set up from Alex DiPaolo on a similar looking play.

The Express finished the game outshooting Surrey 49-23. The Express weren't whistled for a single penalty this season while finishing 1 for 6 on the powerplay.

Langley will visit Coquitlam to cap off the 6 game home stand in the first game of a home and home with the Rivermen. 

Monday, January 14, 2019


Coquitlam Express forward Regan Kimens has been named the BCHL Player of the Week for the week ending Jan. 13, the league announced Monday.

Kimens tallied four goals in his team’s four-game home stand this week, three of which were game-winners. He also added five assists, leading the Express to three wins and an overtime loss.
The 19-year-old Merrimack College commit started off his week by scoring the eventual game-winning goal and adding a pair of assists in his team’s convincing 8-1 win over the West Kelowna Warriors on Monday night. He was named the game’s second star. Two nights later, Kimens chipped in another two assists as Coquitlam dropped a 5-4 decision in overtime to the Merritt Centennials.
On Friday, the Concord, Ont. native scored the deciding goal just under four minutes into overtime and was named first star as the Express beat their division rivals the Chilliwack Chiefs 5-4. He finished off his impressive week on Sunday afternoon by potting another two goals, including his third game-winner of the week, and added one assist as the Express put up eight goals for the second time in a week and beat the Alberni Valley Bulldogs 8-4.
In his second season in the BCHL, Kimens sits fourth in team scoring with 14 goals and 23 assists for 37 points in 38 games.
Honourable mentions:
Vernon Vipers G Aidan Porter: 3GP, 3W, 66 saves/70 shots, .943 SV%, 1.33 GAA
Victoria Grizzlies F Alex Newhook: 3GP, 3G, 3A, GWG, 1st star, 2nd star
Penticton Vees F Massimo Rizzo: 2GP, 2G, 3A, GWG, 1st star
Penticton Vees F Eric Linell: 2GP, 2G, 3A, 2nd star
Salmon Arm Silverbacks F Matthew Verboon: 3GP, 3G, 2A, 1st star


Highlights of the Express 8-4 win over Alberni Valley Sunday afternoon.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Sunday, January 13, 2019


Ty Westgard picked up four assists and Regan Kimens scored twice while adding a helper as the Express doubled Alberni Valley 8-4. Click here for boxscore

The Express started the game as if they were shot out of a cannon playing a high tempo pace that the road weary Bulldogs looked like they would have trouble keeping up with.

Defenceman Pito Walton followed the play right to the Bulldogs net and converted a Regan Kimens pass for a 1-0 Express lead just 30 seconds into the game.

And from there the Express were buzzing in the Bulldogs zone and it took until the 8 minute mark of the game before Alberni Valley was credited with their first shot, while the Express had 8 on John Hawthorne at the other end.

Alberni Valley pulled even taking advantage of an Express turnover at the Bulldogs blueline allowing Issac Tonkin-Palmer to be quickly sprung the other way and snapping a shot in off the glove of Clay Stevenson to tie the game at 1.

Jordan Schulting restored the Express lead late in the period, heading to the net and converting a tip in pass from Ty Westgard for Schulting's 2nd of the season.

Christian Sanda was robbed in the final minute of the period by John Hawthorne who stretched out as far as he could to keep the Express lead at just 2-1 after the Express outshot Alberni Valley 15-4 in the first period.

Dawson Tritt thought he tied the game at two on a powerplay goal he jammed in from under the glove of Clay Stevenson. After discussion by the officials, the call was overturned on coincidental contact.

Regan Kimens potted his first of the net converting from the slot for the second two goal Express lead of the night at 3-1.

The second period wasn't quite as uptempo as the first period. That allowed Alberni Valley to claw their way back in the game at moments.

Mitch Deelstra cut in the Express zone with speed and did a good job to fight off Jack Cameron then slide home his 15th of the season.

Josh Wildauer had the response for the Express just 30 seconds later snapping home his 22nd of the season from the right circle.

The pesky Bulldogs made it a one goal game for a third time two minutes later on a goal by Stephen Castagna.

It was at this point the Express would shake off the Bulldogs and pull away for good.

Regan Kimens from just inside the blueline took a drop pass and ripped home his 5th goal against Alberni Valley this season. Then exactly one minute later Dallas Farrell found himself alone in front of the net and took a backhand from Danny Pearson and Farrell put the Express up 6-3 after 2 periods.

Danny Pearson 5 minutes into the third scored for a second straight game in which he dressed going to the net and converting a set up from Farrell to make it a 7-3 game.

Ryan Novecosky surprised Clay Stevenson snapping a shot from the point for his first of the season to make it a 7-4 game.

That was followed by Alex DiPaolo finishing the scoring tipping home a heads up pass from Jack Cameron.

John Hawthorne then denied Regan Kimens second hat-trick of the season vs. the Bulldogs with a great glove save on a late third period powerplay.

The Express finished the game outshooting Alberni Valley 34-23. Both teams went 0 for 2 on the powerplay.

The win improves the Express to 3-0-1 in their 6 game home stand picking points in all 4 games so far. It will continue Wednesday afternoon when the Express host the Surrey Eagles.

Saturday, January 12, 2019


Highlights of the Express 4-3 overtime victory over Chilliwack Friday night.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 


Regan Kimens scored at 3:54 of the first overtime to lift the Coquitlam Express to a 4-3 overtime victory over Kimens' former team the Chilliwack Chiefs. Click here for boxscore

The result ensured that all 6 games have been won by the home team in the season series. Each time has won three times on their comfortable confines.

This was the tightest of the six games between the teams, which felt more like a playoff game. Clay Stevenson had one of his better outings in recent weeks to post the victory in the Express crease.

Friday marked the Express debuts for Ty Westgard and Aaron White who were acquired from Surrey on Wednesday. Dallas Farrell also returned to the lineup after missing the previous 5 games.

Penalties were the name of the game for the Express in the first period. Chilliwack struck on their first powerplay on a cross ice pass by Ethan Bowen to set up Cole Donhauser for the 1-0 Chilliwack lead.

Clay Stevenson ensured the deficit was just one shutting the door the rest of the period including a number of challenging saves on deflections.

The Express were whistled for two other penalties in the opening period, but the penalty killing rose to the occasion to keep the Express only down 1-0 after being outshot 15-4.

Dallas Farrell pulled the Express even late on their first powerplay in the second period. Alex DiPaolo from the left wing fired a wrist shot that produced a rebound for Farrell to bury his 9th goal of the season.

2:02 later now with the Express shorthanded, a clearing attempt into the Chilliwack end was pressured up ice by Josh Wildauer who stole the puck off Chiefs goaltender Daniel Chenard and was beat on a wraparound by Wildauer for the first Express lead of the night.

The second period was a more wide open period with the teams at times trading chances at both ends of the ice.

Pito Walton extended the Express lead to 3-1 taking pass from Alex DiPaolo then ripping a snapshot for his 4th of the season.

The pesky Chiefs cut the lead to one before the second period was through on a goal from Brett Rylance cutting into a slot then snapping a shot over the shoulder of Clay Stevenson with 1:45 remaining in the second period.

Chilliwack opened the third period with a powerplay with Christian Sanda in the box for kneeing. Jacques Boquot even the game at 3 just 30 seconds into the third period taking a cross ice pass from Skyler Brind'Amour then cutting to the net and sliding home a backhand.

Now in a tie game the teams settled into a tight and somewhat nerve racking third period with neither team wanting to be the one to blink.

Alex DiPaolo came close to giving the Express the lead with a shot off the post with 3 minutes to play.

Then with just under 90 seconds left Clay Stevenson made his best save of the game off Ethan Bowen from the slot. Stevenson finished with 31 saves.

Ty Westgard may have been able to play the role of hero for the Express if a pass from Dallas Farrell into the slot in the final minute wasn't behind one of the newest members of the Express.

Friday was the second straight game for the Express to head to overtime. They played much better in the overtime compared to the previous game Wednesday vs. Merritt. The Express managed to get more puck possession which is so vital in overtime, and that lead to more chances in the extra session for the Express.

Late in the overtime a shot from the boards by Kimens was stopped by Daniel Chenard. Then the Chiefs Harrison Blaisdell took the rebound behind his net to slow things down for the Chiefs, only to bel pressured by his former teammate Regan Kimens who stole the puck off Blaisdell then scored the overtime winner lifting the puck over the pad of Chenard to give the Express the 4-3 overtime victory.

The win gives the Express a 2-0-1 record picking up 5 out of 6 points so far on their 6 game home stand. It will resume Sunday afternoon when the Express host Alberni Valley. 

Friday, January 11, 2019


Highlights of the Merritt Centennials 5-4 overtime win over the Express Wednesday night.

Highlights produced by Eddie Gregory. 

Thursday, January 10, 2019


The Coquitlam Express made a big trade one day prior to the BCHL trade deadline acquiring forwards Ty Westgard and Aaron White in exchange for forward Cole Edgerton and future considerations.

Westgard is the marquee name in this trade as a 20 year old veteran and 5th year player in the BCHL.

The Surrey native's production has taken a big jump dating back to last season. In 82 games dating back to last season Westgard has 25 goals and 79 assists for 104 points. This season he has 10 goals and 24 assists for 24 points in 26 games. Those number are still tops on the Surrey Eagles this season.

Last season Westgard teamed up with John Wesley for one the more explosive offensive duos in the BCHL. His 55 assists were the second most in the BCHL. His 70 points finished tied for 2nd in BCHL scoring.

In 160 career BCHL games all with Surrey, Westgard has 43 goals and 116 assists for 159 points. He also spent time in the WHL with Victoria and Portland with 1 goal and 3 assists in 28 games.

Aaron White has split this season with Surrey in the BCHL and Madison and Omaha in the USHL.

This season in Surrey the Sylvania, Michigan native had 3 goals in 10 games All three goals coming in a 7-6 loss in Merritt in early September. In the USHL White had 1 goal and 5 assists in 21 games. Last season in Surrey, White 13 goals and 11 assists for 24 points in 43 games.

Both Westgard and White are entering the Express room to some familiar faces playing last season with forward Chase Danol. White was also a teammate in the 16-17 season with the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies U18 program with Danol and Josh Wildauer.

Edgerton dressed for 30 games with the Express this season with 3 goals and 7 assists. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2019


Nick Wicks tied the game in the final minute, then won it in overtime in Merritt's 5-4 overtime win over the Express Wednesday night. Click here for boxscore

The Merritt captain started the game by taking the games opening faceoff against his younger brother Garrett who dressed for the Express for a second straight game as an AP.

Danny Pearson returned to the Express lineup after being on the receiving end of a big hit from Powell River's Ryan Pouliot in the final game before the Christmas break. Pearson picked up right where he left off chipping in offensively, 5:35 into he game he went hard to the net and tipped home a perfect pass from Christian Sanda to open the scoring.

The lead was extended to 2-0 just over 6 minutes later when Chase Danol's shot from the left wing eluded Austin Roden for Danol's Express leading 21st of the season.

39 seconds later the Centennials cut the lead to 2-1 on a powerplay goal from Payton Matsui chipping home a loose puck in the Express crease.

Rylan Van Unen erased Merritt's two goal deficit for the first time putting home a rebound that was put right on his tape from Kolby Matthews following a shot from Talon Zakall.

Christian Sanda was really effective using his speed to be a difference maker for the Express Wednesday. He put the Express back in the lead with a pass from the right wing that went off a Centennials defender and in for Sanda's 16th of the season.

Alex DiPaolo was on the receiving end of a hit from Matthieu Gosselin that didn't sit well with the Express. Regan Kimens among others quickly got into the face of Gosselin, but they showed good restrain to not take their team off the on-coming powerplay.

DiPaolo got his revenge personally late in the advantage burying the rebound of Jordan Schulting point shot giving the Express a 4-2 lead heading to the 3rd period.

The lead was looking pretty safe as the final minutes of the third period stared to emerge on the horizon. Kolby Matthews appeared to be pretty dialled in in the Express crease.

Then a 3 on 2 resulted in a third chance opportunity ending up on the stick of Daniel Tkac who buried the rebound with 3:50 to play.

In the final minute with Austin Roden on the bench, his replacement Nick Wicks set up shop in front of the Express net and tipped home a Jayden Fetter shot to tie the game at 4 with 37 seconds left to play.

The Express argued the goal was contacted with a high stick. And the referee originally waved off the goal. Then upon further discussion the call was overturned and the goal was allowed to stand sending the game to overtime.

Chase Danol had the best chance for the Express in overtime cutting into the slot firing a wrist shot that was denied by Roden.

Merritt showed good patience in overtime being very reluctant to give up the puck during the 3 on 3. That patience paid off on the game winning goal. Nick Wicks had the puck in the Express zone and retreated back into the neutral zone then went back on the attack from the right wing and ripped a shot over the shoulder of Kolby Matthews to give the Centennials the 5-4 overtime win. For the Centennials it was their third consecutive overtime win.

The 6 game home stand for the Express continues Friday when the Express host the Chilliwack Chiefs.