Ridge Meadows Flames stay alive with 4-2 win over Aldergrove Kodiaks

Game 6 tonight (Thursday) at Planet Ice in Maple Ridge at 9 p.m.

Ridge Meadows Flames goalie Wesley McLeod stopped Aldergrove Kodiaks' Thomas Hardy Wednesday evening at Aldergrove Arena

Ridge Meadows Flames goalie Wesley McLeod stopped Aldergrove Kodiaks' Thomas Hardy Wednesday evening at Aldergrove Arena

The Ridge Meadows Flames managed to fend off elimination in their best-of-seven playoff series Wednesday night with a 4-2 win on the road over the Aldergrove Kodiaks.

“We got production from all four lines,” said Fiset. “When that happens, you’re going to have a pretty good game.”

The win brings the Pacific International Junior Hockey League playoff series to 3-2 in favour of the Kodiaks, giving the Flames the chance to force a deciding Game 7 with a win tonight (Thursday) at home.

The Flames struck first Wednesday night at the Aldergrove Community Arena with a goal by Sean Pesut in the first period.

“It was really important for us to set the tone early on,” said Fiset.

After Aldergrove things up seconds later, Pesut scored his second of the night in the second period to restore the Flames lead. Pesut completed the hat trick early in the third to put the Flames up 3-1.

The Kodiaks scored a powerplay goal midway through the final frame, but a late goal by Adam Bartsch ensured the Flames win.

Fiset said the team’s play Wednesday night was far more disciplined than Monday’s 8-2 loss on home ice.

“We took 12 straight penalties and that effectively took us out of the game,” said Fiset. “I thought we did a much better job of staying out of the penalty box and didn’t buy in to all their cheap shots they’ve been dishing out.”

However, after a Kodiak player took a run at Flames leading scorer Matthew Bissett late in Wednesday’s game, Danny Brandys stepped into the fray, earning himself a late game misconduct, resulting in a one-game suspension and keeping him out of the lineup for tonight’s game.

Taking his place on the top line will be 16-year-old rookie Marco Ballarin.

“Not to take anything away from Danny – he’s the heart and soul of this team – but Marco has shown every game he can put this team on his back,” said Fiset. “Every time you go into the playoffs you hope at least one player really rises to the occasion and takes their game to the next level, and for us that guy has been Marco.”

Fiset also singled out the strong play of Paul Piluso Wednesday night.

“He played very well defensively in the third period and blocked a lot of shots,” said Fiset. “He made a great play to set up Adam Bartsch’s goal late in the game.”

The Flames face the Kodiaks tonight (Thursday) at home at Planet Ice in Maple Ridge for Game 6 of their best-of-seven series, and will need another win to stay alive.

Fiset said his team has learned as much from their losses this series as their wins.

“We can’t predict the outcome, but we can control our own play, and I think the guys see that,” said Fiset. “When we play a disciplined, focussed game, we win.”

Should the Flames manage to win on home ice tonight, the series will shift to Aldergrove for a Game 7 final to decide the series winner.

• The Ridge Meadows Flames and Aldergrove Kodiaks face-off in Game 6 of their best-of-seven PIJHL playoff series Thursday at 9 p.m. at Planet Ice in Maple Ridge.