Saturday, January 19, 2013

Warriors Clip Eagles in West Kelowna

The Surrey Eagles failed to pick up a victory for a second straight game, losing 5-3 to the West Kelowna Warriors at Royal LePage Place on Saturday night. As a result, the Warriors win the season series with a record of 2-0-1-0 while the Eagles only managed a single point in the three games between the two teams.

The game started off well for the Birds when Devon Toews opened the scoring just 1:44 into the first with a hard slap shot from the high slot. The Warriors returned serve a couple of minutes later on the power play when Ben Tegtmeyer’s long wrister found its way past Michael Santaguida to tie the game. West Kelowna took its first lead of the night before the midway mark as Max French made a nice deke at the left circle before tucking the puck into the net, but the Birds evened the score again prior to the intermission when Trevor Cameron netted a power play goal, deflecting a Toews point shot past Warriors goalie Tyler Briggs. Eagles blue liner Craig Wyszomirski had to leave the game late in the period after taking a puck in the mouth, but the 20-year-old was back on the ice midway through the second after receiving seven stitches. Meanwhile, forward William Clark dropped the mitts with West Kelowna’s Dustin Cave. Both players landed a number of heavy right hands, but Cave got the better of Clark, knocking him to the ice.

Surrey went ahead again in the second on another tipped shot with the man advantage. This time it was Michael Stenerson deflecting Toews’ wrist shot for his 12th goal of the year. Despite taking the lead, the Warriors outplayed the Birds throughout much of the second period, and the turning point in the game came when Brennan Clark and Seb Lloyd scored just 57 seconds apart at 14:41 and 15:38 respectively to put the Warriors ahead after 40.

The Birds had a number of great chances throughout the third period as Eagles players rang pucks off Briggs’ posts and crossbar on a number of different occasions, but Surrey couldn’t get the pivotal bounce. Eventually, the Warriors added some insurance when Josh Monk beat Santaguida between the legs with a shot from the left circle to put the game out of reach.

Despite the loss, the Eagles power play was effective, going 2-for-3, while West Kelowna was 1-for-5 on the man advantage. The Warriors out shot the Eagles 44-35.

The Birds fell into second place in the Mainland Division after the conclusion of play on Saturday, due to the fact that the Chilliwack Chiefs defeated the Prince George Spruce Kings to move one point ahead of Surrey in the standings. The Eagles and Chiefs will face-off at Prospera Centre in Chilliwack on Friday, January 25th.

Official 3 Stars:
1. Tyler Briggs – West Kelowna
2. Devon Toews – Surrey
3. Josh Monk – West Kelowna

My 3 Stars:
1. Max French – West Kelowna
2. Devon Toews – Surrey
3. Seb Lloyd – West Kelowna

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