Junior B Flames getting all the bounces

Goaltending and defence lead to Flames three points on weekend

Flames goalie Jordan Hollett shuts the door on Port Moody Panther C. Lee during a second period power play Friday at Planet Ice.

The acquisition of goaltender Jordan Hollett has transformed the Ridge Meadow Flames from pretender to contender in the Pacific Junior Hockey League.

The Flames snagged three of a possible four points on the weekend with a 3-3 road tie against the Richmond Sockeyes on Thursday, Oct. 22, then a fast-paced 2-1 win over the much improved Port Moody Panthers on home ice Friday, Oct. 23.

Head coach Jamie Fiset said he was thrilled to be able to come out of Richmond with a point, saying it has been a tough place for the Flames to play as of late.

“It’s good. It’s been long time since we’ve been able to carve out any points from Richmond on the road,” said Fiset.

He was equally impressed with how well his team responded playing a mere 24 hours later. He described the Richmond game as a great heavyweight tilt, in which the Flames refused to back down, so to respond Friday in a game that was as high tempo as it was, made the win that much more important for the team’s state of mind.

“We’re starting to get out what we thought we would from this team now,” said Fiset. “We’re starting to play with a little more urgency. Considering we were the more tired team on Friday night, I was pretty happy with the pace.”

There’s no question when the Flames fortunes started to change. The acquisition of 16-year-old goaltender Jordan Hollett has vastly improved the Flames chances in every game they play.

A 2013 first-round pick of the Regina Pats, Hollett has elevated the play of the team, said Fiset.

He said look at the team’s 1-3 record before Hollett arrived, and it’s obvious what solid goaltending means to his team’s confidence.

“There’s no doubt about it. When he landed with us it was a great feeling,” said Fiset, who was a coach on Team B.C. during the 2015 Canada Winter Games, in which Hollett was a starter.

The Flames have four wins, three losses and an overtime loss since the Langley product’s arrival.

Fiset said the strong play of his goaltender means the rest of the team is playing with playing more confidence.

“If you get into a game where you don’t have a lot of confidence in your goaltending and you get down a few goals, it’s hard to get out of that spiral,” said Fiset. “That’s exactly what happened to us early in the year. We would get down a couple quick goals or we would need our goalie to get us through a rough patch and it didn’t happen.”

He said Thursday’s tilt with Richmond was the perfect example. The Sockeyes jumped out to an early lead, but the Flames were able to stick with them thanks to some big saves by Hollett.

The Flames gave up 16 shots in the first period in Richmond, but came out ahead leading 2-1 on goals by Brandon Inwood and Nicholas Maydaniuk.

Jake Holland had the other tally for the Flames, and he was named the game’s first star.

Against the Panthers, rookie Tristan Tressel opened the scoring and sniper Andrew Strelezki fired the winner with 25 seconds left in the second period, but again it was the work of Hollett leading the way for the tired Flames.

He made 30 saves in the game and was named the game’s first star.

“We were dialed in and it felt pretty good to finally get to a stage where we could get to the stage where we could get solid back-to-back games.”

• The Flames host the North Vancouver Wolf Pack Friday, Oct. 30 at 7:30 p.m.

Just Posted

Being Young: Concussions, not my idea of a good time

I had to get doctor’s notes excusing me from classes and from both of my jobs.

Maple Ridge’s indoor pool redo in final months

Structural work done, with target opening to be late summer

Police investigating body found in Maple Ridge park

Discovered early Friday near highway

Maple Ridge’s lake low with dry spell

Boat launch not open at Alouette Lake

Maple Ridge magnetic hill defies the law of Newton

It is a stretch of road where cars roll uphill instead of down

B.C. university to offer first graduate program on mindfulness in Canada

University of the Fraser Valley says the mostly-online program focuses on self-care and well being

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Vancouver-bound transit bus involved in fatal crash near Seattle

One man was killed and a woman injured in crash with bus purchased by TransLink

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

2 fires in Victoria caused by cigarettes prompts warning from deputy fire chief

Two separate fires caused by cigarette butts were avoidable

Most Read