Spartans win in shootout over Eastern Washington

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November 1, 2013, CHENEY, Washington (ISN) – The Trinity Western men’s hockey team kept its early-season momentum rolling as the Spartans rallied to win their fourth straight game with a 4-3 shootout win over Eastern Washington Friday at the EWU Recreation Centre.

Trailing 2-0 after the first period and 3-0 late in the second, the Spartans (5-1) roared back with three straight goals, including two third period tallies from JP Villeneuve (Georgetown, Ont.), and then won it in a shootout as Cody Stephenson (Aldergrove, B.C.), who had two assists in the game, buried the winner.

Villeneuve, who had an assist on Dan Stollery’s (Camrose, Alta.) second period goal, also scored the Spartans first goal in the shootout. Uriah Machuga scored the only goal for EWU (2-2-0-1) in the shootout.

Machuga also scored two goals in regulation while Tyler Mort added the other tally for the Eagles.

Spartans goalie Silas Matthys (Wollerau, Switzerland) made 28 saves on 31 shots and two more saves in the shootout. Jason Greenwell made 34 saves on 37 shots and one save in the shootout.

The Spartans, who were playing without injured captain Brad Bakken (Langley, B.C.), are now 2-1 against EWU this season.

“We asked the guys to be the smartest working team tonight and blend in their hard work and I thought we were able to do that,” said Spartans coach Barret Kropf. “We kept doing what we needed to do even though we were down early. Getting two points on the road is a significant thing and a great confidence booster.

“Silas really bounced back tonight after a tough outing earlier this year. He competed and fought hard. And Blair Murphy (Surrey, B.C.) continues to be a Larry Robinson-type player. He’s got such a big body but he’s calm with the puck and he just really brings some stability to our back end.”

The Eagles got off to a hot start in the first period as they scored two goals, one from Mort and one from Machuga, and outshot TWU 16-10.

In the second period, despite TWU shooting EWU 13-5, the home side pushed its lead to three goals when Machuga scored with 7:51 left in the period.

However, with 16 seconds left in the period, the Spartans got on the board and seized some momentum. Stollery scored on the power play, with assists to Stephenson and Villeneuve, and TWU went into the intermission down just 3-1.

In the third period, with the Spartans pressing, Villeneuve scored twice in a 33 second span, first at 9:24 and then at 9:57, to tie the contest 3-3. Jamey Kreller (Winfield, B.C.) and Stephenson assisted on the first goal while Mattias Schmitt (Surrey) had a helper on the second.

That ultimately set the stage for the shootout. Villeneuve and Machuga each scored on their first attempts. Then after both teams missed, Stephenson scored and EWU’s Chase Wharton did not.

The Spartans return to action Saturday when they will play Selkirk on the road at 7:30 p.m. The game will be streamed live at 

Game Notes: TWU went 1 for 5 on the power play while EWU was 1 for 4…TWU outshot EWU 37-31.