Junior B Flames net second win of season with victory over Port Moody
The Ridge Meadows Flames junior B hockey club regrouped after getting mauled 6-1 by the North Vancouver Wolf Pack on home ice Friday night to register a 5-3 victory on the road Saturday against the Port Moody Panthers for their second win of the season.
The Flames led from the outset, as Matt Bissett scored at 7:27 of the first period to give the Flames a 1-0 lead. Defenceman Nick Coltura scored his first goal of the season to put the ahead by two before the end of the opening frame.
Marco Ballarin scored five minutes into the second period to give the Flames a three-goal lead. Port Moody got on the board at the 13:36 mark of the middle frame, however Ballarin’s second goal of the night restored the Flames’ three-goal lead heading into the third period.
Both teams combined for three goals in under two minutes early in the third period. Port Moody scored five minutes in, with Ridge Meadows’ forward Jared Virtanen scored his first goal of the season 20 seconds later, before the Panthers scored their third of the night to draw within two goals.
But that was as close as the Panthers would get, as the Flames were able hold off Port Moody’s comeback attempts.
Flames goalie Wesley McLeod saved 29 of 32 shots fired his way, while the Flames had 47 shots on Port Moody goalie Zachary Station.
Ballarin led the Flames’ scorers with two goals, earning himself first star honours. Alexander Smith registered a pair of assists, while Nicholas Beck, Jacob Tyler, Bradley Wardner, Trevor Sutton, Sean Pesut, and Reece Rivard each has single assists.
The Flames are now one point out of the Pacific Junior Hockey League with five points after eight games this season. The win Saturday night was just the Flames’ second of the season, and a much more spirited effort than fans witnessed Friday night.
The Flames lost 6-1 to the visiting Wolf Pack at home on Friday, as the Flames’ two goalies combined for just 14 saves.
Back up goalie RJ Bruni got the start Friday, only to allow three goals on six shots. McLeod took over in net late in the first period, stopping 11 of 14 shots he faced in 45 minutes of action.
Former Flame Jordan Hospes fared much better in net, as the Wolf Pack’s starting goalie stopped 19 of 20 shots he faced.
Matt Bissett had the only goal for the Flames.
The Flames return home this Friday to host the Harold Brittain Conference-leading Abbotsford Pilots at Planet Ice in Maple Ridge. Game time is 7:30 p.m.