Weekend Recap is presented by Iris Optometry
After a 4 game stretch of playing the top 3 teams in the Coastal Conference the Kings hit the road as they headed to the mainland to take on the Express and Chiefs who weren’t to far ahead in the standings. The weekend saw the debut of new defenseman Zach Rizzo, but they were without captain Anthony Lucarelli who was dealing with an injury.
Friday they were in Coquitlam for the second time this season, the Express won the first meeting 3-2. It would be a quick start for the home side scoring 3:09 in on a power play goal from Jake Manfre who one timed the puck from the right circle to and open cage after a great passing play. It would be all Express early on but the Kings battled back in the period trying to even it up but the were unsuccessful.
It wouldn’t take too much time in the second period for the Kings to even it up. Christian Maro took the puck over the blueline, took a hit and lost the puck but it ended up up on the stick of Alex Sandhu who quickly fired a wrister on net and got under the glove of Adam Manjo at 1:38 for his first of the season. The Kings held the Express without a shot for the first 9 minutes of the period but when they got their first they took full advantage as a point shot from Sam Frandina was tipped by Noah Dziver at 10:50 to restore the lead. Coquitlam would extend the lead late in the period on a 4 on 4 scenario when Luke Vardy ripped a onetime past Crudle to give the Express a 3-1 lead going to the third.
Coquitlam wouldn’t waste much time to make their lead bigger in the final frame scoring their fourth at 1:23 on the second of the game from Jake Manfre to make it 4-1. The Kings would try to get back in the game, but couldn’t solve Adam Manji again as the Express won 4-1. Final Shots were 36-34 for the Kings.
Saturday the Kings headed to Zach Rizzo’s old stomping grounds in Chilliwack for the first meeting with the Chiefs this season.
The Kings would get back to their fast start routine scoring the opening goal at 3:38. Anthony Yu found Christian Maro wide open and he drove to the net, and despite running out of room he managed to get the puck past Austin McNicholas for his 4th of the season. Chilliwack would respond midway though on a Kings man advantage. The puck got past Thomas Belzil at the blueline and led to a 2 on 0 for the Chiefs and Nico Grabas shot the cross ice pass of the post, which then hit Tresor Wotton and went in the back of the net. It would only take 97 seconds for the Kings to respond with a goal of their own on a 2 on 1. Kailus Green shot the puck and McNicholas left a juicy rebound for Joonas Linnavuori who scored his third on the year to make it 2-1. It seemed like the Kings were going to head into the intermission with a lead but the Chiefs struck quickly for two goals. First from Olivier Beaulieu at 18:26, then Lucas Sorace at 18:48 as the home side took the lead into the second period.
It may of been a tough end to the first period for the Kings but the answered back early in the second on a power play when Adam Mendelson tipped home his fourth off a Zander Stewart shot at 1:09 to tie it up. However there would be another quick response from the opposing side as the Chiefs took advantage of a Kings turnover behind their own goal just 18 seconds later and Nathan Morin put his team back up by one. The Kings might of not had an immediate response after giving up the lead but it didn’t take that long to get back to even. At 5:05 Anthony Yu tried to catch McNicholas out of position with a wrap around, the puck would slide off the toe of Yu’s stick and go right to Jace Harder in the slot who then buried his second to make it 4-4. After a back and forth first half of the game things would settle down and there would be no scoring right to the very end of the game.
We fast forward to the final minute of the third period. The score remains 4-4 in a very defensive third period by both teams as the Kings were outshooting Chilliwack 4-3 heading to the final minute. Chilliwack would enter the offensive zone and the puck would come to the blueline for Brian Morse who fired one towards the net. The puck was heading way wide but Caleb Elfring reached out with is stick to tip the puck, and went into the back of the Kings net passed a surprised Wotton who didn’t see that play coming. Now down by one the Kings had 45 seconds to get the equalizer. The Kings would eventually get a brief 6 on 4 power play with 20 seconds left but couldn’t muster any chances as they fell short 5-4. Final shots were 28-21 for the Kings.
It would be another heartbreaker of a loss for the Kings as they have now dropped 5 games in a row and are just 1-7-2-0 in their last 10 games. Their overall record his 4-13-2-0.
The Kings will be back home this weekend as they get to battle the Chiefs two more times as they make the trip up the Sunshine Coast. The first game of the double header is Friday November 24th and the second game is Saturday November 25th. Both games are at 7pm.
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