Friday, 10 December 2010

Chilliwack Beats Lethbridge 4-3

LETHBRIDGE - Two goals in the first period and two more in the third helped the Chilliwack Bruins to a 4-3 win over the Hurricanes Friday night at the ENMAX Centre.

The Chilliwack Bruins potent power play would open the scoring in this game. Ryan Howse hammered a shot passed Brandon Anderson just a few minutes into the game to give the Bruins a 1-0 lead. Chilliwack would make it two-for-two on the man advantage a little later. Ryan Howse blasted a shot passed a screened Anderson for his second of the night to make it 2-0 for the visitors. Lethbridge would get one of those goal back on a power play of their own. Cam Braes scored his team-leading 12th of the season to cut the Chilliwack lead to 2-1. That was Braes' 5th goal in the passed two games. That's the way the period would end. Chilliwack held the edge in shots 10-9 after one.

In the second, the Hurricanes would battle back to tie the game 2-2. Austin Fyten ripped a low shot coming down the left wing, beating Lucas Gore to even the score early on in the period. Lethbridge would continue to turn up the heat on the Bruins and came awfully close to taking the lead several times, but that was all the offence they were able to muster up in that period. The Canes' came out guns a blazin' in the second as they out shot Chilliwack 16-7 and held the edge in shots 25-17 through 40 minutes of play.

In the third, the Bruins would take a 3-2 lead on a strange incident when two Hurricanes, Daniel Johnston and Michael Sofillas collided at the Chilliwack blueline. That turned into a 3-on-0 rush up the ice for the Bruins and they would make no mistake as Robin Soudek put the puck upstairs. That gave the Bruins a one goal lead again. Both Johnston and Sofillas made it back to the Hurricanes bench, but looked very woozy. They went off to the dressing room and didn't return. Chilliwack would then take a 4-2 lead minutes later when their power play struck again. Jamie Crooks scored on a 5-on-3 man advantage for the Bruins. The Canes' got one of those back late in the game when Mitch Maxwell scored on a penalty shot. That made it 4-3 Chilliwack, but that's as close as the Hurricanes would get in this game. For Maxwell, it was his 10th goal of the season. The loss drops the Hurricanes record to 12-13-2-3 on the season. The power plays looked like this: Chilliwack 3 for 7 and Lethbridge 2 for 5. The Hurricanes out shot the Bruins 38-26.

I talked with Head Coach and GM Rich Preston in the pre-game show about the trade with Vancouver this week. I asked him if he might be in the market to start adding a player or two after trading away two (Yadlowski & Reners) over the past few months. Preston: "Well, we've got 14 forwards now. You're always looking to make your team better. I think we probably need more depth on defence. We had to use five defencemen against Moose Jaw on Tuesday. We can put Max Ross back if we have to but he's been playing so well up front you hate to do that to a guy. I think we'll need to get some depth at defence."


Both Michael Sofillas and Reid Jackson returned to the line-up against Chilliwack. Jackson though left the game late in the first period after taking a hit behind the Hurricanes goal. Sofillas was shaken up late in the third when he collided with Johnston. Both Jackson and Sofillas have missed the passed couple of weeks nursing concussions. Johnston was hurt on that collision with Sofillas and left the game as well.


The Hurricanes next action is Sunday night when they play host to one of the hottest teams in the WHL, the rival Medicine Hat Tigers. This will be first of three games this coming week between the hockey clubs. Game time Sunday from the ENMAX Centre is 6:00 pm (MST). The pre-game show on CJOC at 5:30. The Hurricanes have a 2-1 record versus the Tigers this season.


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  1. Canes played well and a game they could have won...the collision between Johnston and Sofillas was bad luck, poor Sofillas ran head first into Johnston ...I think you meant Jackson was out with a concussion for the last two weeks not Johnston have to question if Jackson and Sofillas returned from concussion too soon...Both maybe gone for awhile now....hope Johnston isn't serious he has played really well . TD

  2. I found it very interesting that Matt Kabayama wondered out loud during his post game comments, why the men in stripes seem to find a way to put the Hurricanes down 2 men late in the third period in games that are tied or one goal differences. I think he was referring to the goaltender interference call on Cam Braes. It happened right in front of me, and Braes was clearly pushed into the goaltender. I was not alone in this assessment of the play as the people around me saw it the same way. No I am not whinning but Matt may have a point.

    As for the outcome of the game, the Hurricanes certainly deserved a better fate. Outside of not being able to handle the best powerplay in the league in the first period (better for the rest of the game),the Canes owned the Bruins with their 5 on 5 play and with any sort of luck around the net, we would not have been talking about a Hurricane loss.

    The injuries to Jackson and Johnston it will likely mean that Preston will make a deal for a defenseman sooner rather than later. (Likely before the Xmas break). Soffilas will be missed for sure as he was the Hurricanes best faceoff man.


  3. Thanks TD. I did mean Jackson. Typo on my part. RJS I agree with you on the Braes penalty call. He was clearly pushed into the goalie. I was, as were many in the building surprised that call was made.

  4. That goalie interference call was total B.S. (I can't say that in the newspaper). While I am OK with the trip on Oslanski and most of the others in the game, I really didn't like the Braes call.
    I do like the fact the players, like Mitch Maxwell and Austin Fyten, won't accept that as an excuse. A couple of years ago, all you heard out of the locker room was excuses, but these kids are pretty determined and that should help them get better as the year goes on.
    I do know from talking to him that Preston doesn't rush the players back from concussions. That doesn't stop the players from fibbing about their symptoms to get back on the ice.
    -- Dylan Purcell

  5. Why is it that it took the Canes 15 min. before they realized the game had started......are the coaches getting the team prepared and motivated? Emotion is a big part of the game. Being keen and motivated leads to good hockey---few mistakes, good passes, winning faceoffs, shooting accurately, skating hard, making smart decisions, etc.

  6. After the collision, Carolyn Glover attends to Johnston, but why wasn't the trainer looking after Sofillas who was writhing in pain. Even when the player managed to get to the bench, still no reaction by the trainer. Player starts heading to the dressing room and still the trainer does nothing.....

  7. There wasn't even a single palyer attempting to help Sofillas. I couldn't believe what I witnessed. Is this a team that just doesn't care about each other. The veterans and leaders are so weak as witnessed by those veterans taking continuous penalties. Braes, Fyten, Oslanski, Maxwell...please stay out of the box. Especially against top rated powerplays! Can't believe it has to be said.