Friday, October 26, 2012


The Chilliwack Chiefs needed only 40 minutes to inflict all the damage they needed en route to a 4-1 win over the Express.

The first two periods saw the visitors with a distinctive edge in play and shots. And their hard work was rewarded with 2 big goals in the final 2 minutes of the second period to put the game to bed.

Chilliwack scored first for the third time in 3 meetings with the Express less than 5 minutes into the game. 

Shay Laurent fired a great pass through the crease to Austin Plevy who snapped it past Cole Huggins. The powerplay tally was the first powerplay goal allowed at home by the Express in 36 shorthanded situations.

The Chiefs jump saw them open a 15-8 advantage in shots after 20 minutes. Cole Huggins made a key save off Luke Esposito late in the period to keep the deficit at one.

The second period was more of the same for Chilliwack. The game really turned on the Express late in the period. Austin Plevy scored his second of the game as he was able to bury the rebound of a Ben Isreal shot and snap it past Huggins with just under 2 minutes to go.

Shortly there after Mathieu Tibbet was assessed a double minor for spearing giving the Express a great chance to get back into the game. Soon after the advantage started the game turned in Chilliwack's favor for good. Josh Hansen fired a wrist shot from just inside the blue line that handcuffed Huggins and found the back of the net for a backbreaking shorthanded goal with less than 30 seconds remaining in the period to put the Chiefs up 3-0 with 20 minutes to go.

In the third the Chiefs added another early in the frame. After a cleanly won faceoff in the Express zone the puck came back to Kiefer McNaughton who blasted a shot past Huggins. It was at that point the Express finally woke up.

Phil Zielonka scored his first goal less than a minute later as he took a pass and got in behind the Chiefs defence and made a great move to the backhand and roofed it over Mitch Gillam. That goal sparked a third period that saw the Express generate 19 shots in the final 20 minutes. But they were only able to muster the one goal despite all the pressure.

The loss for the Express was their 5th in a row on home ice. And the offence has all but dried up at home with 4 of those 5 losses seeing the Express only being able to muster one goal in a game.

The Chiefs win moves them 5 points ahead of the Express in the Mainland division standings. Prince George was able to keep pace with Chilliwack as those two teams sit atop of the division after Prince George knocked off Alberni Valley.

Surrey is now tied with the Express for third place in the division standings after they knocked off the Langley Rivermen. Both teams have the same amount of wins and points. But the Eagles move up a spot thanks to their win over the Express back in late September.

The loss now drops the Express to 1-4-0-1 against Mainland division clubs. And they're winless in their last 5 games within the division.

The Express have a chance to pick up a win within the division Sunday afternoon when they host Langley. The only Mainland division club the Express have beaten so far this season.

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