by Jacob Lazare |
The Express have only lost 1 game since October 27, and last night’s shootout win over the Chilliwack Chiefs was the 14th consecutive victory for the Express which set a franchise record. Click here for boxscore.
With that win, we set a franchise record with our 14th CONSECUTIVE WIN! We pass the 2006 National Champion squad who rattled off 13 in a row between the end of the season and the beginning of the playoffs.#AllAboard pic.twitter.com/B55WwvaHx9
— Coquitlam Express Jr. A Hockey Club (@BCHLExpress) December 30, 2019
It was the 2nd half of back to backs between these two teams. Coquitlam took Saturday night’s game in Chilliwack by a 5-4 final in a shootout. The Express fell behind 2-0 in the opening period of that game, but managed to open the scoring Sunday night on home ice. Adam Trotman buried his 8th of the season off a rebound in front the net, and the Express led 1-0 at the break.
It was Chilliwack who took control of the game in the second period. Minnesota Wild draft pick Nikita Nesterenko tied the game 3:26 into the period with a powerplay goal.
Arlo Merritt then gave the Chiefs the lead with another powerplay goal late in the second period. The Chiefs were ahead 2-1 through 40 minutes after outshooting the Express 13-6 in the period.
The Express needed a strong bounce back in the third period for a second consecutive comeback against the Chiefs. The effort was clearly there. The Express played a solid final frame, tying the game courtesy a Greg Lapointe one-timer on a 5 on 3 powerplay.
The Express outshot the Chiefs 13-3 in the period. No differently than Saturday night, overtime solved nothing. For the third matchup in a row, the Chiefs and Express were destined for a shootout.
Express netminder Clay Stevenson got some revenge on Nikita Nesterenko, denying him to start the shootout. Nesterenko bested Stevenson in the shootout on Saturday.
The next 4 shooters all missed as well, with Massimo Rizzo ringing a shot off the crossbar being the closest anyone came to scoring. That left Will Margel with the game on stick.
Saturday night, Margel channeled his inner Peter Forsberg with the game on the line and pulled off a gorgeous one-handed deke to keep the shootout alive. On Sunday, he once again skated in with confidence, and beat Chiefs goalie Mathieu Caron through the 5-hole to win the game for Coquitlam.
The Express head to the north Okanagan this weekend for a three game road trip with stops in West-Kelowna, Vernon, and Salmon Arm.