Saturday, November 3, 2012

Game Preview: at Surrey Eagles

Karan Toor (4) and the Spruce Kings
will try to "Best" (13) the Surrey Eagles tonight

Today is time change day and the Spruce Kings will be looking for a change of their own tonight in Surrey when they take on the Eagles. Prince George is coming off a disappointing 5-1 loss to the Langley Rivermen last night while the Surrey Eagles return to their nest with a pair of road wins to start their three game weekend.

On Thursday night the Eagles needed double overtime to post a 2-1 win over Langley, they followed that up last night with a 3-2 win over the Merritt Centennials in regulation time. The Spruce Kings were perhaps still a little full of the treats they were given this Halloween week and came out flat against Langley only to find themselves down 2-0 less than four minutes into the game and unable to mount a comeback this time around.

Certainly going 6-1 in seven games is still something to be proud of and where the team needs to turn their focus back to. Prince George has had good luck this season against the Eagles and have posted a pair of 3 goal victories over their Mainland Division rival in their two previous meetings. In the first meeting of the season Prince George posted a 4-1 win in Surrey and then followed that up a week later with a 3-0 win in the Castle.

The Surrey Eagles have made one significant change to their lineup since those games and the early dividends have resulted in an improvement in the standings. Brady Shaw was acquired from the Coquitlam Express and has been good for a point a game and timely goals. Third in team scoring, Shaw has a 10 goals and 5 helpers in 17 games with 4 goals coming in the five games played with Surrey.

Flying high in their last six games, the Surrey Eagles have reeled off five wins and have scored five goals in four of those games since being held off the score sheet in Prince George. The turnaround could be just the injection of some adrenaline in the form of Shaw, but is more likely due to the overall game plan coming into play and some scoring being spread around the top two lines.

Shaw shows up as the leading goal scorer with ten but as mentioned previously, six of those goals were scored while with the Coquitlam Express. Demico Hannoun, Michael Stenerson, Brett Mulcahy and Devon Toews do have six goals each and fill in leader board spots 1 - 5 with a combined total of 64 points. Craig Wyszomirski and Jordan Klimek have also contributed recently from the back end to help the Surrey Eagles climb out of the basement.

All five teams in the Mainland Division are above .500 which leaves the division the tightest in the BCHL. Only five points separating the top team (Prince George) and the bottom team (Langley) while there is a 14 point separation in the Island Division and 15 in the Interior. Suffering a setback in one game is one thing, suffering a similar setback in a second consecutive game is just something that the Spruce Kings don't want to experience at this time.

Game time tonight is 7pm in the South Surrey Arena with the game broadcast on 93.1 CFIS-FM. The free audio broadcast will be available online from the community radio station's website and the pay-per-view broadcast will be on The Treasure Cove Casino pregame show will start at 6:35pm with Ron Gallo featuring stats and conversations with players and coaches.

Following the game, don't forget to change your clocks back.

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