Great start, poor finish on Giants road trip

Vancouver Giants Tyler Popowich scored both goals in his team
Vancouver Giants Tyler Popowich scored both goals in his team's 3-2 loss to the Kootenay Ice on Sunday in Cranbrook. The Giants won two of five games on a road trip against the Central Division.
— image credit: Gary Ahuja Langley Times file photo

The good news?

The Vancouver Giants had a chance in all five road games last week against the Western Hockey League’s Central Division.

The bad news?

The team returned home with just four out of a possible 10 points against the league’s worst division.

The Giants opened up the trip with a 5-4 shootout win over the Calgary Hitmen and then two days later, a 3-2 win over the Edmonton Oil Kings.

But the team played three times in less than 72 hours, and while all three games were one-goal contests, Vancouver was on the short end each time.

The Giants fell 3-2 to Red Deer, 5-4 to Medicine Hat and 3-2 to Kootenay to conclude the trip.

The results leave Vancouver with a 16-23-1-2 record and their 35 points have them eight points back of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

The toughest of those losses had to be against Medicine Hat as Vancouver was tied 4-4 and on the power play with one minute to play, only to surrender the winning goal on a 2-on-0 break with seven seconds remaining.

James Malm had just tied the score at four with a Giants power-play goal moments before, his second goal and third point of the game.

Ty Ronning and Jack Flaman — short-handed — had the other Vancouver goals.

Against the Ice the next day, Tyler Popowich scored both Vancouver goals in the loss while Matt Barberis and Radovan Bondra had the Giants goals against Red Deer.

Vancouver is back in action on Friday (Jan. 13) against the Moose Jaw Warriors at the Langley Events Centre. Game time is 7:30 p.m.


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