The Ridge Meadows Flames were able to put their jerseys on and face opposition for the first time since COVID hit. (Facebook)

The Ridge Meadows Flames were able to put their jerseys on and face opposition for the first time since COVID hit. (Facebook)

Flames wrangle with whalers in first exhibition game of 20/21 season

Maple Ridge Junior B squad fell to the White Rock team 5-3 on Sunday

The Ridge Meadows Flames took to the ice for their first exhibition game of the 2020/ 2021 season on Sunday (October 18).

They came out on the wrong end of a 5-3 match-up against Cohort 4 rivals the White Rock Whalers, but head coach Bayne Ryshak said there were a lot of good takeaways from the outing at the Abbotsford Summit Centre.

“We didn’t necessarily get the result we wanted but it was good to get them back in a game situation,” he said.

READ MORE: Flames honour their best from last season

The Flames lit the lamp twice in the opening nine minutes of the first period, with hometown boys Talon Duff and Nicholas Amsler getting onto the scoreboard.

But, after a goalie switch midway through the second period, things went south for the Ridge Meadows squad.

Cam Connolly came in to replace Elliot Marshall, and the Whalers tied it up thanks to some special teams work, scoring one on the power play and adding a short-handed marker.

“Cam went in for his half of the game and I said on the bench to the guys, ‘Don’t give up a breakaway and don’t give up a power play; let him get comfortable in the net,”’ Ryshak said

“And sure enough 30 seconds later we took a penalty and he had to face a power play to start his half.”

Linden Perry put the Flames up 3-2 seven minutes into the third but that would be the last lead for the Flames that night.

White Rock scored three in a row, two of them on the power play, to take the exhibition by a score of 5-3.

The Flames will have to face-off against the Aldergrove Kodiaks in their first regular season game at Abbotsford Summit Centre on Sunday (Oct. 25).

The squad’s head coach said the team will be looking to settle some scores after being knocked out by the Kodiaks in last season’s playoffs.

“To some of the kids in the group they’re going to remember that [loss],” Ryshak said. “And the new kids, they’re definitely going to be introduced to the rivalry.”

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