Sunday, December 16, 2012

Thompson Shuts Out Birds

Kirk Thompson made 41 saves to help lift the Prince George Spruce Kings to a 2-0 victory over the home town Surrey Eagles on Sunday afternoon. The win was Thompson's second shutout of the season -- both of which have come against the Birds.

The story of the day for Surrey was missed opportunities. In the first period, the Eagles failed to score on three power plays, including a lengthy 5-on-3, despite out shooting Prince George 12-10. Neither team could find the net in the opening frame, although it was Surrey who carried much of the momentum.

It was the same story in the second. The Spruce Kings' parade to the penalty box continued, and the Birds once again failed to find the net on three chances with the man advantage. Surrey held Prince George to a mere three shots on goal in the period while firing 13 pucks on Thompson's goal, but the Surrey native turned them all aside, and the game remained scoreless through 40 minutes.

It seemed like the game may have been destined to end tied, but just over five minutes into the third, the Spruce Kings found their goal. Prince George captain Trevor Esau picked up the puck at the left point and fired a wrist shot on goal that found its way through traffic and between the legs of Michael Santaguida who didn't see it until it was past him. For the remainder of the third, the Eagles turned up the pressure, but Thompson was stellar in goal for Prince George, making a number of key saves on a variety of Surrey shooters. The 20-year-old also got some help from his goal post when Devon Toews wired a shot off the iron from the right point in the late stages of the game. In the final minutes the Eagles were forced to pull Santaguida to try and find an equalizer, but Coltyn Hansen assured the Spruce Kings of the victory when he scored into the open cage with 14 seconds to go.

Surrey finished with 41 shots on goal while Prince George only had 18 -- the least amount of shots the Eagles have conceded in a single game all season. The Birds went 0-for-7 on the power play and have now failed to score on their last 23 consecutive opportunities with the man advantage.

Each team has now won three games in the season series, although the Spruce Kings have picked up three more points than the Eagles by virtue of the fact that all three of Surrey's victories came in overtime.

The Eagles will now have 12 days off before resuming their schedule on December 28th at home to the Chilliwack Chiefs. For tickets, call 604-531-4625.

Official 3 Stars:
1. Kirk Thompson - Prince George
2. Trevor Esau - Prince George
3. Michael Santaguida - Surrey

My 3 Stars:
1. Kirk Thompson - Prince George
2. Devon Toews - Surrey
3. Justin Rai - Prince George

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