Surrey Eagles, Chilliwack Chiefs split weekend series
For the second straight weekend, the Surrey Eagles finished with a .500 record, and splitting a home-and-home series with the Chilliwack Chiefs.
Friday night at South Surrey Arena, the Eagles won their home-opener in dramatic fashion, edging the Chiefs 3-2 in double-overtime, with rookie Drew Best netting the winning goal in extra time.
The following day, this time at Chilliwack’s Prospera Centre, the Chiefs drew even with a 4-2 win.
Through two weeks of BC Hockey League action, the Eagles have a 2-2 record, and sit fourth in the Mainland Division, behind 3-0-0-1 Prince George, Coquitlam and Chilliwack.
“You hate to sound cliché, but it’s still a process. We’re still finding out who plays well together, and we’ve put together some good stretches,” Eagles head coach Matt Erhart said. “But a split is a split. We’ll take it and move on.”
Friday, Surrey didn’t get off to a good start in front of the hometown fans, as the Chiefs leapt out to a 2-0 lead in the first period – Josh Hansen and Matt Revel each scored for Chilliwack by the 13:05 mark of the frame.
However, third-year Eagle Michael Stenerson made it 2-1 with a power-play goal midway through the second period, and the Eagles struck again with the man-advantage in the third, tying the game on a Colton Mackie goal 9:20 into the final frame.
Defenceman Beau Orser assisted on both markers.
After neither team broke the deadlock in the first four-on-four overtime time, the game moved to a three-on-three second OT; Best scored at the 1:04 mark.
Rookie net minder Glenn Ferguson stopped 27 of 29 shots on net to earn the victory.
After going 2-for-7 on the power-play Friday – and after scoring at least one goal with the man-advantage in each of the two games at the BCHL Showcase two weekends ago – the Eagles’ power-play failed to score Saturday, for the first time this season.
“Special teams-wise, we’ve been pretty good so far,” said Erhart, adding that the team was also ranked No. 2 in penalty killing through the first two weeks of the BCHL season.
“But five-on-five, we’ve got to find a way to score some more goals.”
Neither team scored a goal of any sort in the opening 20 minutes at Prospera Centre, until the home side broke the game open with a four-goal second period.
Spencer Graboski, Luke Esposito and Tanner Cochrane all scored for Chilliwack in the first five minutes of the period, and Josh Hansen added a fourth with 1:09 left before the intermission.
Brett Mulcahy – with his team-best third goal of the year – replied for the Eagles, and Best scored his second of the season with 36 seconds left in the game, to round out the scoring for the Peninsula squad.
Ferguson was again between the pipes for the Eagles, stopping 33 shots.
Brett Seldon did not last long in Surrey Eagles’ colours.
The 18-year-old defenceman, who was acquired from the Ontario Junior Hockey League’s North York Rangers in exchange for Sean McGovern, was dealt Wednesday to the Coquitlam Express for future considerations.
Seldon did not play a regular-season game for the Eagles; he was a healthy scratch in both games of the BCHL Showcase.
To take his spot on the roster, the Eagles added 18-year-old forward Joel Gaudet to the roster. Gaudet played last season for the Junior ‘B’ Grandview Steelers, tallying 21 points in 37 games.
Also last week, the Eagles acquired 18-year-old Semiahmoo Minor Hockey alum Mason Blacklock from the Nanaimo Clippers, in exchange for future considerations. Blacklock was in his second season with the Clippers, and has also played one season with Langley.
Last year, he had 16 points in 50 games.
“Mason is a big forward with a left shot who will fit in well with our group and style of play,” said Eagles head coach and GM Matt Erhart. “I believe he has offensive upside and can flourish in an Eagles uniform.”
To make room on the roster for Blacklock, Surrey released forward Harlan Orr.