Steve Koshey’s winning goal in double-overtime Saturday salvaged a weekend split for the Surrey Eagles, who bounced back from a 7-1 road loss to the Powell River Kings the night before to win 4-3.
“The best thing about that (7-1) loss on Friday was that we didn’t have too much time to sit and think about it – we had to to play them again the next night,” said Eagles coach Matt Erhart.
“Sometimes, you lose like that and then have to sit on it for two weeks until you play them again.”
The 1-1 weekend leaves the Eagles in second place in the B.C. Hockey League’s Coastal Conference, three points back of the surging Cowichan Valley Capitals, who have lost just one regulation game in the last 10.
Surrey was scheduled to play a third game last week, Thursday in Port Alberni against the Bulldogs, but it was postponed because weather conditions cancelled a number of BC Ferries’ sailings, leaving the Eagles stuck on the mainland. The game will now be played Feb. 18.
Friday in Powell River, the Kings jumped out to a 3-0 lead by the 3:24 mark of the second period, and it was 6-0 before Surrey got on the board with a Linden Saip power-play goal.
It was the Kings’ power-play that did much of the damage, however, as the home team went 5-for-9 with the man advantage.
“Powell River can be a real tough place to play, especially for the first time, which was the case for a lot of our young guys,” Erhart said.
“We just ran into a bit of a discipline problem and allowed them to have too many power plays. Some of the penalties were warranted… frustration just boiled over.
“It was a bit of a wake-up call though, which isn’t always a bad thing.”
Powell River’s Evan Richardson paced the Kings’ attack with one goal and four assists, while Craig Dalrymple had a four-point night. Two other Kings, Teagan Waugh and Matt Scarth, had three-point efforts.
Eagles starter Andrew Hunt stopped 29 shots in the loss.
The following night, back on home ice, the Eagles were a much better team.
Brandon Morley had two goals to lead Surrey, while Ben Greiner also added a goal in the second period, which put the Eagles up 3-0 at the time. Powell River scored once more before the second intermission, but the Eagles still lead 3-1 with 20 minutes remaining.
“Brandon had a real good game for us,” Erhart said.
In the third period, the Kings made it 3-2 on a power-play goal from Chris Williams, and the visitors tied the game in the final minute after pulling the goalie for the extra attacker.
“Five-on-five, we didn’t give them much, and we were in control of a 3-1 game most of the night, I thought,” Erhart said.
“But they got a power-play goal and then managed to get one with the goalie pulled.”
After one overtime period of four-on-four action solved nothing, the game moved to three-on-three; Koshey scored 3:29 into the period to give the home team the win.
Eagles’ goalie Conor Barrie stopped 26 shots to earn the victory, which was the backup netminders’ second of the year.
“It was nice to see him get the win, since he doesn’t get the chance to play a whole lot for us,” said Erhart. “He played really well, and the guys played good in front of him.”
Scholarship for Toews
Rookie defenceman Devon Toews got some good news prior to the Eagles’ weekend games, agreeing last week to a scholarship with Quinnipiac University Bobcats.
The 17-year-old Abbotsford native has had a strong rookie season for the Eagles, with four goals and seven assists in 22 games.
He’ll likely play one more season in South Surrey before joining the Bobcats, an NCAA Div. 1 team once captained by Eagles coach Matt Erhart, in the fall of 2013.