Monday, February 11, 2013


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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