Surrey Eagles take two from Bulldogs
The Penticton Vees may be hogging most of the headlines in the BC Hockey League these days – and rightfully so, considering they’ve won a league-record 34 straight games – but the Surrey Eagles have been on an impressive roll themselves.
After tacking another two wins to their record last weekend – 5-4 and 4-1 victories over the Alberni Valley Bulldogs – the South Surrey-based squad have now picked up at least one point in 23 of the last 24 games – and the last 16 games straight. The last time the Eagles failed to net a win, tie or overtime loss was Jan. 6 against Powell River; before that, the last time was Dec. 9.
“We haven’t said too much to the guys about (the streak), and it hasn’t been getting a lot of attention, but that’s OK,” said Eagles coach Matt Erhart. “A lot of people just know we’re playing well, even if they don’t know the numbers.”
The two-month-long run has boosted the Birds into first place in the Coastal Conference, with 73 points, which is still one-up on the second-place Kings. Surrey has nine games left, while the Kings have seven.
The Eagles’ points streak seemed to be in jeopardy early in Friday’s game in Alberni Valley, as the home team led 2-0 after 20 minutes on goals from Mitchell Crisanti and Yan Kalashnikov, who scored on the power play.
In the second period, however, the visitors stormed back to briefly tie the game by the 12:02 mark on goals from Alex Hagen – who now has 14 goals in 28 games since being traded to Surrey from Vernon – and Robert Lindores. Alberni’s Turner Popoff restored the lead, again on the power play, with 2:03 left before period’s end.
The Eagles’ special teams won them the game in the third period. Brandon Tanev scored a shorthanded marker, and Tyler Morley, with a power-play goal, put Surrey up 4-3 with less than three minutes to go.
Defenceman Steve Koshey added an empty-netter with 1:08 left, and Bulldogs’ Ryan Lough replied 18 seconds later to again make it a one-goal game.
Michael Stenerson and Brandon Morley led the offence Saturday, with a goal and two assists each, while Koshey and Linden Saip rounded out the scoring.
Surrey returns home to South Surrey Arena this week. Wednesday, they host the Langley Rivermen and on the weekend, the Nanaimo Clippers and Alberni Bulldogs come to town, on Friday and Saturday respectively.