Vancouver, B.C. – The Vancouver Giants got six goals from six different players but lost a thriller by a score to 7-6 to the visiting Prince George Cougars on Tuesday evening at the Langley Events Centre. 16-year-old defenceman Alex Kannok-Leipert scored his first WHL goal for Vancouver while Dylan Plouffe, Brendan Semchuk, Taden Rattie, Jack Flaman and Radovan Bondra also found the net.
The Cougars jumped out to an early 3-0 lead with goals from Tate Olson, Jared Bethune and Justin Almeida. Kannok-Leipert put Vancouver on the board with a wrist shot from the point to make to 3-1, but Josh Curtis restored Prince George’s three goal lead before the end of the frame.
Vancouver scored three unanswered goals in the second period to tie the game. Plouffe beat Cougars goalie Nick McBride from the point before Semchuk wired a wrist shot into the top right corner from the left circle on a power play. Rattie scored the equalizer, knocking a rebound past McBride after a centring pass from James Malm. The Cougars pulled McBride after the tying goal, replacing him with Ty Edmonds. Bethune netted his second of the night with under a minute left in the period to give Prince George the lead again. It looked like the Giants had tied the game with seven seconds left in the period when Prince George forward Colby McAuley knocked the puck into his own net, but the goal was waved off after a video review.
McAuley added a power play goal for Prince George in the third to make 6-4 before Flaman and Bondra scored goals less than two minutes apart to even the score again. Bethune completed his hat-trick and tallied the eventual winner with under five minutes left in the third period, and although they pulled the goaltender, Vancouver couldn’t tie the game.
The Giants will be back in action on Friday, September 30th, when they host the Seattle Thunderbirds at the Langley Events Centre. The opening face-off is set for 7:30pm.