Langley, BC – The Lethbridge Hurricanes won their second straight game on Wednesday as they defeated the Vancouver Giants by a 5-2 score at the Langley Events Centre.
Reece Klassen started for the Hurricanes in his hometown. Klassen, who played for the Valley West Hawks in the BC Major Midget League who play their home games at the LEC, made a total of 21 saves for his first WHL victory.
The game started with great pace from both teams as it went nearly three minutes before the first whistle. The ‘Canes started strong defensively blocking countless shots in the opening minutes of play. Lethbridge opened the scoring at the 10:54 mark as Giorgio Estephan buried a one-timer by Giants’ goalie David Tendeck to make it 1-0; Dylan Cozens and Calen Addison scored the assists on the goal. Under four minutes later, the Giants equalized as their Captain Tyler Benson stickhandled around a ‘Canes defender before slipping it by Reece Klassen to make it 1-1. Before the period was out, the Hurricanes restored their lead as Jake Elmer snapped home his fourth of the season with 27.6 seconds left in the opening period. The ‘Canes outshot the Giants 13-7 in the first period.
The ‘Canes added to their lead early in the second period as Ryan Vandervlis poked home a loose puck passed Tendeck to make it 3-1 Lethbridge 1:52 into the middle frame; Ryan Bowen was credited with the lone assist on the goal. Vandervlis had a breakaway later in the period but lost the handle on the puck right as he was going to make his move. Vancouver had a power play in the middle frame, but failed to capitalize on their first chance of the game. The ‘Canes made it 4-1 as Jordy Bellerive back-handed a puck under Tendeck for his 12th of the season extending his goal scoring streak to four straight games; Cozens and Ty Prefontaine picked up the assists on the play. The ‘Canes outshot the Giants 13-10 in the second period and led 26-17 after two.
Vancouver made things interesting in the third period as Ty Ronning scored for the 11th straight game at the 9:06 mark to make it a 4-2 lead for the Hurricanes. Giants continued to press in hopes of pulling within one, but the ‘Canes stood tall. Vancouver pulled the goaltender late and Klassen came up with a monstrous save on Benson before the Hurricanes quickly countered to see Taylor Ross score an empty net goal to seal a 5-2 victory.
The ‘Canes outshot the Giants 14-6 in third period and 40-23 in the game. The ‘Canes went 0/2 on the power play while Vancouver went 0/1 with the man advantage.
Three stars of the game were:
1) ‘Canes – #24 Dylan Cozens (2 assists)
2) Giants – #17 Tyler Benson (1 goal, 1 assist)
3) ‘Canes – #9 Giorgio Estephan (1 goal)
The win for the Hurricanes was their second straight and improves their overall record to 9-12-1-0 on the season and 3-7-0-0 on the road. The ‘Canes have now scored a total of 15 goals in their last two games.
The Hurricanes will complete their five game BC road trip on Saturday when they travel to Cranbrook to face the Kootenay Ice at 7:00pm MT. It will be the first of seven meetings on the season against the Ice.
(Photo Credit: Vancouver Giants)