Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hansen Hat Trick Powers Spruce Kings Past Express

Cameron Lawson (7) celebrates Shayne Morrissey's
eventual game winning goal

The Prince George Spruce Kings offence got back in gear and the team snapped a three-game losing streak Saturday night with a 5-3 win over the Coquitlam Express at the Castle.

A pair of first-period goals by Coltyn Hansen got things started and he added an empty-netter to finish things off with a hat trick. In between the Shayne Morrissey-Cameron Lawson combination clicked for a pair early in the third as the Spruce Kings built a three-goal lead and hung on for the win.

With the Spruce Kings leading 2-1 through 40 minutes, Lawson and Morrissey both scored in the first six minutes of the third to put the game out of reach.

First Lawson broke into the Express zone, but was stopped by a Coquitlam defender. Morrissey, the trailer, corralled the loose puck and his shot hit Lawson as it made its way past Cole Huggins in the Express net.

A few shifts later, Morrissey was credited with a goal after a Coquitlam player put the puck in his own net. The goal came after a nice rush by the Spruce Kings' top scoring line, with assists going to Lawson and Trevor Esau.

Will Cook scored twice to get the Express back within one, but Spruce Kings goalie Kirk Thompson shut the door from that point on to preserve the lead. The first goal off a face off in the Prince George end and the second on a rush with just 1:45 remaining in the third.

Hansen iced it with an empty-net goal.

Hansen got the Spruce Kings on the board on the very first rush on the very first shift of the game. After Jace Henig's shot went wide, the rebound off the end boards came right to Hansen and he deposited the puck into the open net just 34 seconds into the game. Mark Begert also picked up an assist.

Ben Israel got the Express back on even terms with a perfectly placed wrist shot off a two-on-two rush. Israel crossed the blue-line on the left wing, moved across to the right slot and shot back across his body catching Thompson going the wrong way.

Hansen restored the Spruce Kings lead before the first period was out and once again he found himself in position where all he had to do was put a puck into an open net. This time Hansen got help from Mitch Eden who passed it to Lyndon Martell in the high slot, Martell quickly slid it over to Hansen just off the left wing boards. The quick puck movement was too fast for Huggins, and Hansen fired it home.

With the two tallies, Hansen has tied Tyson Witala for second on the team with 14. Lawson scored his 15th of the year Saturday to take sole possession of the team lead.

Thompson finished the game with 38 saves - including a few of the acrobatic variety - to notch his 19th win of the season. Huggins stopped 27 pucks in a losing cause.

The Spruce Kings have won all five meetings against the Express so far this year, but Coquitlam will try to change that when the two teams meet again for a Sunday matinee at the Castle. Puck drop is 3 p.m.

No comments: