The Langley Rivermen suffered the their most lop-sided loss of the season on Sunday afternoon against the Surrey Eagles in a 10-2 game. The Birds scored early and often and showed why they are in the spot they are in which is first place in the Mainland division. Darren Hogg got the start for the Rivermen, while Mchael Santaguida got the call for the Eagles.
Kevin Kilistoff opened up the scoring on a breakaway a couple of minutes in for Surrey. The Rivermen responded well after that goal and had many of opportunities to score on Michael Santaguia, but could not solve him. At one point in the period the shots were 10-1 in favour of the ‘Men. The Eagles would feed off their goaltenders strong play and earn another goal in the late minutes from Adam Tambellini on the power play. Langley would be down two goals after 20 minutes, but out shot Surrey 14-8.
In the second period, Austin Azurdia was put on the top line with Puskarich and Campbell and the move paid immediate dividends. 46 seconds in Evan Campbell threw a big hit on Craig Wyszomirski at centre ice which created an opportunity for Azurdia and Puskarich to go two on one in the Eagles zone. Azurdia made a perfect pass to Puskarich who fired home his league leading 27th goal to cut the deficit to one. The same trio the very next shift tied up the game on a goal from Azurdia. Puskarich returned the favour and spotted an oncoming Azurdia flying down the right wing and roofed the puck over the shoulder of Santaguida for the tying goal. Soon after the goal Eagles head coach Matt Ehrhart called a time out to settle down the troops and the move paid off. At the 8:06 mark Demico Hannoun rifled a slap shot top shelf behind Darren Hogg to get the Eagles lead back. Colton Mackie, and Tambellini would score two more for the Eagles before the period ended and took a three goal lead into the final frame.
Unfortunately for Langley, the third period was one to forget. Just over one minute in, Brady Shaw lined up Evan Campbell with a massive hit behind the Rivermen goal and Aaron Dolby took exception and jumped Shaw in his teammates defense. Dolby would give the Eagles a seven minute power play and they scored twice on it with goals from Tambellini and Shaw. They were not done there as Will Clark scored a pair of goals while Brett Mulcahy added a single to reach double digits.
The Eagles power play was a huge factor in the game going 5/8 with Tambellini, Shaw, and Stenerson doing most of the damage combining for 13 points. Darren Hogg was pulled from the game and picked up the loss, while Santaguida earned his 19th win of the season.
The Rivermen remain one point up on the Express for fourth place and will travel to Coquitlam on Friday night.