To suggest the Penticton Vees have the Surrey Eagles’ number this season might be something of an understatement.
The two squads met on the BC Hockey League’s season-opening weekend back in September, with the Vees walloping the Birds 11-2, and that dominance continued last weekend.
At Penticton’s South Okanagan Events Centre on Halloween, the Eagles put forth a ghouls performance against the home team, losing 10-0, and in Saturday’s return engagement – this time at South Surrey Arena – the Vees again got the best of the struggling Eagles, winning 11-0.
The 21-0 goal differential was the team’s worst stretch of the season, and, coupled with losses on the two prior weekends, the team has now lost five straight. The last win came Oct. 19, when they edged the Coquitlam Express in overtime.
The losing skid has dropped Surrey to the bottom of the BCHL’s Mainland Division, with a record of 3-10-0-3.
In Friday’s loss, the second period was the Eagles’ undoing.
The Vees – who are the league’s top team, and have lost just once all season – scored twice in the opening 20 minutes, with the first goal coming off the stick of former Eagle Demico Hannoun, but blew the game wide open in the middle stanza, with six unanswered goals, including three on the power play.
Rookie netminder Daniel Davidson was left in net for the entire game, stopping 33 shots amid the Vee’s 10-goal outburst.
Hannoun had two goals for Penticton, and three players – Riley Alred, Lewis Zerter-Gossage and Matthew Serratore – had three-point nights.
A day later at home, the Vee’s same cast of characters sunk the young Eagles. Alfred, Cam Amantea – who had a hat-trick– Connor Russell and Jack Ramsey all had three points in the lopsided win, and Hannoun also scored his third goal of the weekend.
Davidson again was between the pipes for Surrey, though he was eventually relieved by backup Kurt Russell. Usual starter, 19-year-old Christian Short – who has led the league in shots-faced by a wide margin – did not dress for the second game. It was unclear if his absence was injury-related, and head coach Blaine Neufeld could not be reached by press deadline Monday afternoon.
The Eagles will try to stop the bleeding this weekend when they play a two-game home-and-home series against the Coquitlam Express. On Friday, the two clubs face off in Coquitlam, and Saturday hit the ice at South Surrey Arena. Puck drop is 7:11 p.m.