Three different Express forwards enjoyed multi-goal games as Coquitlam took a 7-3 decision from the Eagles Wednesday at Poirier Sports & Leisure Centre.
Corey Mackin, Canon Pieper and Ryan Rosenthal each chipped in with a pair of goals as Coquitlam took its third straight home-ice decision against Surrey, and restored a six-point advantage over the Eagles for the Mainland division's third seed.
The hosts jumped out of the gate with a pair of power-play goals off rebounds, first when Mackin pounced on a loose puck at the left-wing post 3:56 in, then again on Pieper's conversion on a goal-mouth scramble 5:01 later.
The Eagles, undaunted, were able to tie the game at 2-2 before the end of the opening frame, though. Surrey found its first goal on an odd-man rush when leading scorer Danton Heinen looked off his linemate while rushing down the right wing, then snapped a quick wrister into the top left corner of Gordie Defiel's goal.
Nathan Renouf put home Surrey's second goal in the final minute of the opening period, roofing a back-hand wraparound attempt from close range.
The second period continued to be Surrey's nemesis Wednesday, though, with Coquitlam capitalizing on two more scrambles in front of netminder Bo Didur inside the first twelve minutes of the middle frame. Jace Hennig put the hosts ahead before Pieper added his second goal of the night at 11:46.
Surrey thought they'd clawed a goal back one more time minutes later on a powerful rush to the front of the net by Anthony Conti, but the goal was waved off by referee Ryan O'Keeffe on account of goaltender interference.
Coquitlam added a fifth goal 2:46 from the end of period two when Mackin strode down the left wing and snapped a shot through Didur's legs.
Express playmaker Adam Rockwood showed off his abilities in the opening half of the third period, setting up captain Rosenthal on a pair of goals to widen the gap. First, Rosenthal was sprung down the right wing where he rifled a wrist-shot into the top corner from the circle, then less than four minutes later was sent in alone on a breakaway pass from Rockwood where, from just outside the crease he cut sharply to the backhand and tucked the puck into the Surrey net.
Braedan Russell added a consolation marker late on a Surrey power-play, ripping a wrist shot up top after a hard pass from Conti, who was positioned in the left-wing corner.
Heinen, Renouf and Russell all had multi-point games for Surrey, while Rockwood led all scorers with four assists.
My Three Stars:
1. Canon Pieper, Coquitlam
2. Adam Rockwood, Coquitlam
3. Corey Mackin, Coquitlam
Up Next: the Eagles return home for a pair of games this weekend, beginning Friday against the Trail Smoke Eaters. Game time from South Surrey Arena is 7:00 pm.
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