Trail forwards Ryan Edwards and Bryce Knapp crash the net during Friday's second period (Randy Emery photo)
The Coquitlam Express started early, and got a solid performance in goal from rookie Daniel Urbani en route to a 4-0 victory at Cominco Arena Friday.
The visitors opened the scoring 1:15 into the game, as New Jersey Devils draftee Alex Kerfoot redirected a centring feed over the shoulder of Trail goaltender Lyndon Stanwood. With one hand on his stick, Kerfoot got just enough of a hard feed from linemate Zack Pryzbek to tally his 6th goal of the season.
The teams traded chances (and fists in a spirited early second-period bout between Scott Davidson and Jace Hennig), until the Express doubled their lead on another deflection with just over 5 minutes to go in period two. Forward John Siemer re-directed a Luca Leone slap-pass from close range for his third goal in two career outings against Trail.
The Express would extend their lead in the final minute of the period, seconds after a Tyler Berkholtz goal was disallowed. Coquitlam forward Justin Georgeson pounced on a loose puck in neutral ice and wired a short-handed wrister home. It was the fifth short-handed goal surrendered by the Smokies this season.
Rookie Adam Rockwood would round out the scoring late in the third period on a great individual effort that saw him take time, space and patience to beat the Trail goaltender.
Much like the road games last weekend, the Smokies competed hard, generating multiple chances on or close to goal. Urbani was strong between the pipes for Coquitlam, and used his size to avoid having to make desperate saves. And while Trail's penalty-killing continues to improve, the power-play again failed to click tonight on four opportunities; the Smokies have scored (along with Nanaimo and Vernon ) a league-low four man-advantage goals.
My Three Stars:
1. Daniel Urbani, Coquitlam
2. Alex Kerfoot, Coquitlam
3. Scott Davidson, Trail
Up Next: The Smokies are back on home ice Sunday evening against the Merritt Centennials to close out Parents Weekend at Cominco Arena. Game time is 5:00 pm.