Men’s hockey hangs on to beat Victoria

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October 26, 2013, LANGLEY, British Columbia (ISN) – The Trinity Western men’s hockey team earned its third win in four games as it beat winless Victoria 3-2 Friday at the Langley Events Centre.

Despite the Vikes outshooting TWU 38-21, the Spartans got goals from Brody Hemrich (Surrey, B.C.), Blair Murphy (Surrey) and Trevor Beaupre (New Westminster, B.C.) to improve to 3-1 on the season and continue what has been the men’s hockey team’s best start since coming under the Spartans umbrella in 2010. The loss drops Victoria to 0-7, however the Vikes did bump a four-game goalless skid.

The Spartans opened a 3-1 lead with 3:13 left in the second period and then held on for the win through a penalty-plagued third period.

After picking up his first shutout in a Spartans uniform last weekend, second-year goalie Harry Fredeman (Ladner, B.C.) was once again the star of the show as he made 36 saves to earn his third straight win.

Victoria’s Eli Wiebe and Mitchell Bell replied for the Vikes, but, despite a flurry of late-game chances, they were unable to find the equalizer.

Victoria goalie Robert Simmons made 18 saves in a losing effort.

The teams will play a rematch Saturday at 2 p.m.

“We were lucky tonight,” said Spartans coach Barret Kropf. “Right now we’re just a bunch of silos and guys are thinking they can get things done by themselves. I thought we played half of the game the way we wanted and the other half guys were just trying to do too much.

“Obviously Harry battled for us back there. I thought a guy like Ryan Valdes (Langley) played well and, given the fact he’s transitioning from forward to defence, he should get kudos on his effort tonight. But up front, we’re going to have to have a little heart-to-heart with some of the guys and figure this out.”

The Spartans Hemrich opened the scoring less than five minutes into the game and while TWU only fired five shots on net in the opening 20 minutes, it went into the intermission with a 1-0 lead. Brad Bakken (Langley) and Douglas Gordon (Ottawa) picked up assists on Hemrich’s tally.

In the second, TWU was again outshot, this time 16-9, but managed to outscore Victoria 2-1 to build a 3-1 lead. Murphy scored just over three minutes into the period with Joey Walter (Langley) and Jamey Kreller (Winfield, B.C.) earning helpers.

Victoria responded with 6:09 left in the period as Wiebe, cut the Spartans lead in half with a goal that also saw Shawn Mueller and Brad Robinson get assists. The goal was the Vikes first in 274:02, dating back to a Sept. 28 game against Thompson Rivers.

Beaupre than scored what proved to be the winner late in the period with help from Murphy and Mattias Schmitt (Surrey, B.C.).

In the third period, the teams combined for 28 penalty minutes, including game misconducts to both Victoria’s Mark Prest for a hit to the head and TWU’s Jake Harcoff for slashing. But the Spartans, forced to kill off a 5-on-3, held the Vikes off just long enough to get the win.

With 3:14 left in the third, Bell capitalized on a power play chance burying a rebound from in tight, with assists to Mueller and Evan Warner, to get the game to within one goal. But, despite throwing a ton of rubber towards Fredeman’s net, the Vikes were unable to tie it up late.

Game Notes: The Spartans were 0 for 5 on the power play while Victoria was 2 for 7.