BURNABY, British Columbia – The Selkirk Saints scored two power play goals to defeat the Trinity Western Spartans 2-1 to open the BCIHL University Showcase Friday night at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre in Burnaby, B.C. The loss drops the Spartans to 7-0-4-1, while the win moves the Saints to 8-4-0-0 and one point up on the third place Spartans.
Special teams were the difference in tonight BCIHL match-up. Selkirk finished the night going 2-for-6 on the power play, while TWU finished the game going 0-for-6.
TWU’s Silas Matthys made 32 saves in the loss, while Selkirk’s James Prigione made 24 saves to record the win.
“Our level of compete was there for 40 minutes and for the most part five-on-five we are skating with teams. But you can’t expect to win 1-0 hockey games all the time, even though that would be the perfect win for a defensive minded team and coach,” commented TWU head coach Barret Kropf. “We just can’t score goals. And when it is like that, it is the little things that make the difference. It all goes back to practice and in practice we are not picking up pucks, we are not making passes and we are not hitting the net.”
“When you are not being intentional in your process in practice, this is the result you get. It is pretty hard to have an effective power play when you cannot receive a pass coming out of your own zone,” added Kropf. “We gave lots of guys the chance today on the power play. We have opened the door wide open and no one has stepped up yet. So we will give more guys a chance on Sunday to see who wants to take it.”
The Spartans Jamie Russell opened the scoring at 5:11 of the opening period to put TWU up 1-0 on the visiting Saints. Daniel Oakley and Brett Wur earned the assists on the odd man scoring rush. Selkirk’s Dane Feeney tied the game on the power-play with 4:45 remaining in the opening period, assists went to Dallas Calvin and Nathan Browne. The Saints finished the period with a 17-8 edge in shots on goal.
Neither team could generate much of an offence in the second period with TWU finishing with a slight 7-5 edge in shots on goal.
Selkirk’s Ashton McLeod got the game winner at 11:23 of the third period with a shot through traffic on the Saints sixth power-play opportunity of the night. Tanner Lenting earned the assist on the game winning goal. Selkirk outshot TWU 12-10 in the final period.
The Spartans next game will be Sunday afternoon in Burnaby. TWU will match up with Eastern Washington University. Puck drop is scheduled for 5 p.m. PST.