Surrey Eagles boost lead

Langley Rivermen’s Chris Tracy stands by as Surrey Eagles goaltender Conor Barrie makes a save Wednesday at the Langley Events Centre. - Damon Jones photo
Langley Rivermen’s Chris Tracy stands by as Surrey Eagles goaltender Conor Barrie makes a save Wednesday at the Langley Events Centre.
— image credit: Damon Jones photo

The Surrey Eagles punched their ticket to the BC Hockey League playoffs on the weekend, after wins over the Nanaimo Clippers and Alberni Valley Bulldogs officially clinched their post-season berth, while also extending their tenuous hold on first place in the Coastal Conference.

On Friday at South Surrey Arena, the Eagles’ offence led the home team to a 6-3 win over the visiting Clippers, and Saturday edged the visiting Bulldogs 4-3, giving Surrey 77 points – three up on the Powell River Kings, who’d only trailed by a single point before weekend action.

The only negative for the Eagles last week came Wednesday, when the team’s 16-game point streak – earning either a win, tie or overtime-loss – was snapped in a 4-1 loss to the lowly Langley Rivermen, who despite sitting in last place in the Coastal Conference, have given Surrey trouble at times this month; on Feb. 11 they took the Eagles to overtime, before falling 3-2.

Against Alberni Valley Saturday, the Eagles were led by Brayden Jaw, who opened the scoring 11:46 into the first period and added his second goal of the contest midway through the second. The two-goal outburst for the Harvard-bound Jaw gives him seven goals this season.

In addition to Jaw, Trevor Cameron and Sean McGovern also scored in the second period for Surrey, and Michael Stenerson and Brandon Tanev added two assists apiece.

McGovern – who has been the hottest Eagle over the last month – also had a goal and two assists to lead the team Saturday over Nanaimo. The 18-year-old Ontario native, in his rookie season in the BCHL, has 15 points in his last 11 games – a streak that began in mid-February.

McGovern wasn’t the only Eagle to register a multi-point game Saturday against Nanaimo. Alex Hagen, Brandon Morley and Robert Lindores each had a goal and an assist, while Cameron added two helpers. Demico Hannoun added his 11th goal of the year on a third-period power play.

Andrew Hunt was between the pipes for both weekend tilts, but backup Conor Barrie earned the start Wednesday against the Rivermen, where he was peppered with 39 shots on net.

Lindores scored the Eagles’ lone goal in the game, a power-play marker 8:22 into the first period, while Langley was paced by 20-year-old Darnell Dyck – a former Eagle – who scored twice.

The Eagles will have the opportunity to redeem themselves tonight (Tuesday) in Langley, during a return engagement with the Rivermen – the first in a five-game week.

On Wednesday, they play a second mid-week game in Cowichan, against the Capitals, who sit just four points back of Surrey for top spot in the Coastal Conference. On Friday, they travel to Victoria to battle the Grizzlies, and they play two against the second-place Powell River Kings Saturday night and Sunday afternoon, both at Powell River’s Hap Parker Arena.

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