By Steve Erickson
The Surrey Eagles entered a pair of weekend games coming off an impressive 4-1 victory over the Coquitlam Express with a record of 3-7 for six points through 10 games.
The Express are looking to rebound from the loss midweek sitting in third spot in the Mainland Division with 14 points, but the key for this game are the new additions added by the Eagles.
Having pulled off a three-team deal acquiring Kyle Dumba (Goaltender) and Brady Lynn (Forward) in a three-team deal involving Island Division Nanaimo Clippers and the Interior Division Penticton Vees.
The move has Sam Steele of the Vees go to Nanaimo, while Eagles (Forward) Eric Linell move to the Penticton Vees as well as future considerations from the Nanaimo Clippers.
Dumba (20) is a seasoned vet in the BCHL and no stranger to the net as last season with the Silverbacks in 30 games he posted a .892 SV% regular season and .974 SV% in the playoffs.
The Eagles were looking for a quick start and no sooner that asked it was Santa Juana that got the first of the game (2nd of the season at 3:53 giving the Eagles the early lead something they were focused on.
Holden Katzalay jumped on a loose puck at the side of the net after Brandon Santa Juana threw one out from the corner forcing Kolby Matthews to make the first stop, but was unable to get his glove on it giving the Eagles a 2-0 lead at 6:07 bringing the fans to their feet.
With Cody Schiavon in the sin bin for roughing the Express were working on the PP and given the shots directed at the net, it was no real surprise that Pito Walton put one past Cayden Bailey a short 49 seconds later.
The first ended with the Express out shooting the Eagles by a 12-7 margin with both tenders making some remarkable saves.
The Eagles came out strong, but Nicholas Wildgoose of the Express notched (4th of the season) at 18:12 trying the game and again out shooting the Eagles by another 12-7 margin out shooting the Eagles 24-14 through two.
With Chase Stevenson and Ty Westgard working magic they slid one to Liam Ryan (2nd of the season) giving the Eagles a 3-2 lead with the third coming to a close, but apparently not sooner enough for the Eagles.
Josh Wildauer tied the game (3-3) a short 34 second later (9:17) from outside the crease after taking a feed from Dallas Farrell to a shocked Eagles squad.
The longer the game went on, the more physical the game became it was apparent that the previous games as well as this one had both teams getting more aggressive.
The eventual game winner was off the stick of Christian Sanda who gave the Express a 4-3 lead that saw the Eagles play a more wide open game sending numerous dump-in’s in the direction of the net, only to be turned aside or go wide.
The Eagles called a time out, pulling Bailey for the extra attacker and while in the attacking zone the Express managed a break out, only to have Justyn Gurney get a minor for tripping and eventually a misconduct on the whistle.
Try as they might, the Eagles were unable to get the trying marker forcing overtime letting the Express steal the win and grab second place in the mainland division standings.
FortisBC Player of the Game
Brandon Santa Juana
1st) Dallas Farrell (0G/2A)
2nd) Brandon Santa Juana (1G/1A)
3rd) Pito Walton (1G/0A)
The Eagles next home game is against the Merritt Centennials Sunday October 7th at 4 pm followed by the ever popular “SKATE WITH THE EAGLES”