The Langley Rivermen did not play a very good 50 minutes of hockey, but their last 10 was sure good. The Eagles were able to knock off the Rivermen with a 5-3 final in the first meeting of the season. Coming into the game the Eagles had a slim one point advantage in the standings, which set up a big game at the South Surrey Arena on Friday night. James Barr got the call in net for the ‘Men, while Michael santaguida started for the ‘Birds.
The Eagles opened the scoring just over 12 minutes in on a goal from Michael Stenerson. In fact that was the only goal of the frame as the Eagles took a 1-0 lead into the 1st intermission. Lots of pucks were fired on goal with Surrey out shooting Langley 17-13.
The second frame was much like the first with Surrey scoring the only marker. Brady Shaw deposited a loose puck into a wide open net as Barr was caught out of position on a rebound. The Rivermen were fighting the puck to say the least as they just could not generate any offense.
The third period was controlled by the Eagles for the first ten minutes as they got goals from Colton Mackie and Brady Shaw to make it a 4-0 game. Barr was chased out of the game after the fourth goal, which made way for Darren Hogg. The Rivermen seemed sparked by the change as Mitch McLain scored his second of the year on a rebound in front of the goal to cut the deficit to three. With less than eight minutes to go and on a power play, the Rivermen pulled Hogg for the extra attacker to make it a 6 on 4 and the gutsy move paid off. Mark Whiteley fired home his first career BCHL goal on a long shot from the blue line. Then with less than four minutes to play and on another man advantage, the ‘Men tried the same thing and pulled the goalie for the extra advantage. Mitch McLain banged home his second of the period to make things really interesting at 4-3, but the Eagles eventually scored the empty net goal to ice the game with nine seconds left.
Santaguida picked up his fourth win of the year facing 34 shots, while Barr was charged the loss seeing 40 pucks. Langley’s power play finished the night 2/5, while Surrey was 1/5.
It was a valiant effort from the Rivermen, but in the end just seemed a step behind all night. Credit the Eagles top line of Hannoun-Stenerson-Shaw who were dominant all night long combining for eight points. The Rivermen are now three points back of the Eagles, but will have a chance for revenge tomorrow night at home for game # 2 of the home and home affair.