The Ridge Meadows Flames faced one of the top two teams in the Pacific Junior Hockey League on Tuesday night, losing 7-4 to the Delta Icehawks.
Flames general manager Jamie Fiset said his team had a poor start, and a 2-0 deficit after the first period gave them a huge task to catch Delta.
“You find yourself down 2-0 to the best team in the league at home, and it’s tough,” said Fiset.
But the Flames clawed their way back into the contest, made it a one-goal game, and then gave up two “untimely goals.”
The Flames faced their former teammate Bradley Crompton, who was traded to the Icehawks, and has piled up seven goals and 15 points in nine games. The big power forward had four assists and was the game’s first star on Tuesday against his old teammates.
But one of the players who came the other way in those deals, Paul Georgeopolous, also had a strong game, with a goal and two assists against his former team.
Fiset said Georgeopolous has been a great two-way forward for the Flames, putting up eight points in 10 games since his acquisition, which is close to the point-a-game pace that Crompton had been on.
The other key acquisition who was brought to the Flames in the Crompton deal was Taylor Seganfreddo, who has 10 points in nine games with the Flames. But he was not available, forced to serve a two-game suspension for compiling too many penalty minutes.
He and 20-year-old Brandon Galbraith were missing against the IceHawks, and they were missed, said Fiset.
Zachary McKee, Andrew Strelezki and Brad Buckham all scored for the Flames, while Quenton Magnuson had two assists.
Two local affiliate players, Devon Taylor and Taylor Lewis, got into the lineup and took regular shifts in their first games with the Flames.
“They look really good for 16-year-old rookies – very promising,” said Fiset.
The schedule doesn’t get any easier for the Flames, who host first-place Aldergrove on Friday night. Fiset said it’s the toughest week of the season, but his team showed no quit against Delta,
• Game time is 7:30 p.m. at Cam Neely Arena.