The Abbotsford Canucks battled back from an early 2-0 deficit to earn a 4-3 overtime win against the San Jose Barracuda in California on Friday (April 15).
The returns of Justin Dowling, Sheldon Rempal and Justin Bailey to the lineup proved to be the difference, as Dowling scored twice, including the game winner, Rempal had one goal and one assist and Bailey set up the overtime goal.
Defenceman Devante Stephens also had a big goal in the third period to momentarily put Abbotsford up 3-2 in the third.
The Barracuda attacked in the first period, with one power play and one shorthanded goal from Lane Pederson. But the second period was all Abbotsford, with Dowling and Rempal both tallying on the power play.
Stephens put the Canucks up 3-2 at 2:53 of the third, but San Jose’s Kyle Topping tied the game up at 12:16 and it went to the extra frame.
The winning goal saw Bailey use his speed and carry the puck to open ice and Dowling tipping his shot on goal.
Spencer Martin made 22 saves for his 19th win on the year and Rempal led all skaters with six shots.
The even better news for the Canucks is that the win leapfrogs them over the Bakersfield Condors and back into fourth place in the American Hockey League’s Pacific Division. The two teams are tied in points, regulation wins and regulation and overtime wins (after tonight) but Abbotsford has two wins in the shootout which places them ahead in the tiebreaker.
But, none of that could matter tomorrow (Saturday) when the Condors and Canucks play each other in Bakersfield. Whichever team wins tomorrow will be in fourth, but the two teams do play again in Abbotsford on April 26.
Visit abbynews.com for coverage of tomorrow’s game.