Chiefs down Rivermen in Mainland battle

The Chilliwack Chiefs continued their perfect record against the Rivermen this year with a 6-3 win at the Langley Events Centre on Saturday night. The first place Chiefs showed why they are in top spot with a complete 60 minute game and padded their lead in the standings. James Barr would receive his eighth straight start and would go up against one of the league’s best in Mitch Gillam.

The game started out the way the Rivermen hoped as Nathan Craft opened the scoring. Craft spotted a loose puck off a point shot and stuffed home his seventh of the year past Gillam. The Chiefs would get that goal right back just before the 10 minute mark from Shay Laurent. The Chiefs defenseman fired a shot towards the goal that bounced off a leg in front of Barr and beat him fivehole. A few minutes later Ben Masella would get the go ahead goal off a pin point wrist shot from the slot. The Chiefs would take a 2-1 lead into the second period and out shot the ‘Men in the opening frame 8-7.

The Rivermen would even up the game in the second period on a power play goal from Evan Anderson. Matt Ustaski centered a pass in front of the goal and the puck ended up on the sitck of Anderson who made no mistake for his eighth goal. At the thirteen minute mark Trevor Hills would put in his first of the game on a play set up beautifully by Luke Esposito. 25 seconds later, Jaret Babych would get the Chiefs fourth goal on a quick snap shot in the slot that beat Barr just beneath the blocker. Soon after,  Chilliwack would have a golden opportunity on a 5 on 3 power play, but could not capitalize. The Rivermen would build off a great penalty kill and leading scorer Mario Puskarich would cut the Chiefs lead to one goal on the power play before the period was finished.

Unfortunately for the Rivermen, that would be all they would get and the Chiefs put them away with back to back goals from Alexander Perron-Fontaine and Trevor Hills. The Chiefs top line of Esposito, Plevy, and Hills were a handful all night and combined for eight points in the contest. Barr would face 38 shots, while Gillam saw 32 come his way.

The Rivermen have one more game before the Christmas break which will be tomorrow afternoon at home against Powell River. The Kings are coming off back to back overtime games against Surrey and Coquitlam. They tied the Eagles on Friday, and lost against the Express tonight.

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