News

Road warriors happy to be home

Friends and loved ones of murder victim John Falani Taueli washed cars Tuesday at the 76 gas station in Bremerton, across the street from the murder scene, to raise money for his family and impending funeral costs. - Kassie Korich
Friends and loved ones of murder victim John Falani Taueli washed cars Tuesday at the 76 gas station in Bremerton, across the street from the murder scene, to raise money for his family and impending funeral costs.
— image credit: Kassie Korich

The Bruins return to home ice this week a happy bunch after winning two of three on an eastern road swing.

After losing 7-1 to the Calgary Hitmen last Wednesday, the Bruins rebounded to surprise the Red Deer Rebels 4-3 in a shootout Friday night. The capper came Saturday night when Chilliwack recorded a 5-4 overtime win over the Kootenay Ice — an epic upset based on the records of the two teams.

The Bruins came into the game with 16 wins and 37 points, fifth in the B.C. division standings. The Ice came into the game with 38 wins and 82 points, second in the Central division and third overall in the Western Hockey League.

But as the old saying goes, ‘on any given day any team can beat any other team.’ The Bruins pushed the Ice to overtime, where anything can happen, and won the game when Colby Kulhanek and Ken Petkau combined to set up defenceman Nick Holden for the decisive marker.

“Beating those guys is definitely good,” Holden. “We did what we do with most teams. We stick around, stick around, stick around and somehow we find ourselves in overtime with a chance to win. You can sense the other team getting frustrated. They think they should be winning and they’re not and they get tense.”

Holden, a native of St. Albert, Alta., clearly enjoys road trips to his old stomping grounds.

The 19-year-old blueliner scored the shootout winner Dec. 12 as the Bruins downed Red Deer 6-5. Friday night he scored in the shootout again as Chilliwack downed the Rebels 4-3. He followed that with his overtime heroics versus Kootenay Saturday.

“I’d like to tell you it was pretty, but actually it was just a shot that went in off my toe,” Holden admitted. “I think most of the Alberta boys like coming home to play in front of friends and family and I know I like playing well.”

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of Chilliwack’s weekend outings was the presence of balanced scoring. The Bruins won twice without getting a single goal from their two best forwards, Mark Santorelli and Oscar Moller.

Captain Josh Aspenlind had two goals. Ken Petkau, Dillon Johnstone, Holden, Dylan Chapman, Craig Lineker and Matt McCue also hit the scoresheet.

It was Chapman’s first goal this season.

Chilliwack’s recent offensive exploits mean they are no longer threatening to break the WHL all-time record for fewest goals in a season.

The 2004-05 Swift Current Broncos set that dubious record by scoring a dismal 135 goals, an average of 1.875 per game. The Bruins were sniffing around that record earlier this season, but at their current pace they would now finish the season with 156 goals, or an average of 2.172 goals per game.

Though they insist they don’t often pay attention to such statistics, it’s a relief to the Bruins to know they won’t be entering the record books as the WHL’s most offensively futile squad.

“It’s definitely nice to know,” Holden said. “No one wants to be the lowest scoring team in league history. To us, it doesn’t matter if we win 1-0 or 5-4, but it’s nice to get some goals.”

Chilliwack hosts Seattle Wednesday night at 7 p.m. at Prospera Centre.

EMAIL NEWSLETTERS

Latest news, top stories, and community events,
delivered to your inbox.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the latest Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Sep 26 edition online now. Browse the archives.