Saturday, December 28, 2013


Marc Biega's 3rd of the night gave the Express a 6-5 overtime win in a wild game with the Langley Rivermen.

It was the first game back from the Christmas break for both teams. The Express were off for just over a week. Langley nearly two weeks.

Gage Torrell got the proceedings started taking a nice feed from Will Cook and snapping it past a stretched out Gordie Defiel.

This game was filled with penalties assessed to both teams.

Just moments after a 5 on 3 for the Express expired Marc Biega snapped a wrister past Lyndon Stanwood for his first of the night.

That was followed by another shorthanded goal for the BCHL's most dangerous team while a man down.

Canon Pieper blocked a shot at the blue line and he was free on the breakaway where he made no mistake scoring on the backhand with a deke into the roof.

It was the 14th shorthanded goal for the Express this season. And Canon's 4th shorthanded goal of the season.

Biega added his second of the night midway through the second period as his one timer on the power play hit a stick and got past Stanwood.

Langley had a quick response just 43 seconds later as Marcus Vela set up Darien Craighead to jammed it through the legs of Gordie Defiel.

The Express response to the goal was impressive. They re-stored their two goal lead just under 4 minutes later when Joey Santucci blasted home a set up from the slot by Adam Rockwood.

That goal brought Lyndon Stanwood's night to a close after allowing 4 goals on 16 shots.

Brock Crossthwaite was welcomed to the game by Canon Pieper's second of the night on a shot from the point that was tipped for a 5-2 Express lead just 56 seconds after Santucci's goal.

Then things started to get silly. Brendan Gulka tried to goat Joey Santucci into a fight when he lined up for the face-off following the goal. Additional rough stuff ensued including Crossthwaite challenging Gordie Defiel to a fight.

But the Express did a good job of not falling into the trap that Langley was trying to goat the Express into shenanigans and just looked at the scoreboard and let it do all the talking.

A three goal lead for the Express entering the third should have been pretty safe.

But any feelings of easiness may have been lost when Gordie Defiel whiffed on Tony Bretzman's wrister just 2:42 into the period.

The goal gave Langley life and re-focused them. Their push resulted in a 5-3 game just 6 minutes into the third when Mitch McClain from behind the net set up Matt Ustaski.

Langley's comeback was complete when Zach Urban's point shot hit the leg of an Express defenceman and got past Defiel. It took 9:11 for the Rivermen to make the 3 goal Express lead a thing of the past.

We needed overtime for the second time this season between these two teams. Marc Biega put the game on ice when Crossthwaite couldn't find the puck in his equipment and the Express defenceman swooped in and poked home his hat-trick goal for the Express overtime winner.

Biega's hat-trick was just the third by a defenceman in franchise history. And the first since Alan Mazur potted one October 2nd, 2005 vs. the Quesnel Millionaires when the Express were based in Burnaby.

These teams will go at it again in less than 24 hours when Langley comes to Coquitlam Sunday afternoon. Don't be surprised if the bad blood between these two teams carries over to the re-match.

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