Storybook ending spoiled in overtime

Lucas Gore's goal crease was once again a busy place. The Tri-City Americans peppered the Chilliwack net with 37 shots Wednesday night

Lucas Gore's goal crease was once again a busy place. The Tri-City Americans peppered the Chilliwack net with 37 shots Wednesday night

Kevin Sundher had to work really hard at fighting back tears Wednesday night.

Normally a happy, smiling young man, the 17-year-old Surrey native shuffled his feet and stared at the floor, trying to process a 4-3 overtime loss to the Tri-City Americans.

Earlier that night, he’d been on top of the world, scoring a goal with 11.3 ticks left to cap off a miraculous last minute comeback and land his team in OT.

Sundher’s goal followed on the heels of a Jamie Crooks tally, which came with just 22.1 seconds left in regulation time.

A 3-1 deficit erased in the blink of an eye.

You had to see it to believe it.

Sadly, many who bought tickets to the game didn’t, flocking to the exits when it looked like the Bruins were heading for quiet defeat. It may be a very long time before they have the chance to witness something like that again.

Two last minute goals erased 59 minutes of frustration, and the Bruins came out for the extra session believing they were destined to win.

And they almost did.

Chilliwack carried the play in the extra session and if a Tri-City back-checker hadn’t caught up with Roman Horak as he teed up the potential game-winning shot from slot, we might be talking about a 2-2 series heading back to Kennewick.

But Disney script-writers had nothing to do with this one.

Kruise Reddick beat Lucas Gore through a maze of players with 4:51 left in the first overtime period, denying Chilliwack its fairytale ending and leading us back to Sundher, in the locker room, in the process of processing.

“This is a tough pill to swallow,” he said, slowly. “To work so hard and come back like that and then have it end the way it did, maybe it’ll seem a bit better in a day or two, but right now it really hurts.”

The overtime session was beyond description, full of end-to-end action and near misses at both ends.

“Every moment was so intense, and I thought we had them a couple times,” Sundher said. “But, the goal…”

A minute before Reddick ended the game, Gore made a spectacular save on Brendan Shinnimin, who teed up a wrist shot from 10 feet out. Gore’s glove plucked the puck out of the air, bringing the crowd to its feet.

They ooohed and aaahed as the Bruins buzzed around the Tri-City net, and the roof might literally have blown off Prospera Centre had they scored.

The whole scene caused ex-Bruins coach Jim Hiller to gush to the Tri-City Herald afterwards, “Oh my gosh. That right there is why people are so passionate about this sport.”

Chilliwack defenceman Matt Delahey, a veteran of 258 regular season and 21 playoff games in the Western Hockey League, can’t remember ever experiencing anything remotely close.

“The odds were against us, and it would have been easy to just roll over and die,” he said. “But we didn’t, and it was just a tough break at the end. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Delahey rarely came off the ice in overtime. When he did, it was for a 20 second break before he was right back out there. Potentially playing his last game in Chilliwack, the 20-year-old left everything on the ice.

But like his Western Hockey League career, Chilliwack’s post-season run may now be just one game away from ending, unless they can find a way to win in Kennewick, where they’ve only won twice in 11 all-time visits.

Once again, the odds are stacked heavily in Tri-City’s favour.

But if you were in Vegas right now with the chance to put a wager on the outcome of Game 5, would you really want to bet against Chilliwack?

See a weekend wrapup in the Tuesday Progress sports section.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Hundreds of anti-mask protesters walked along Yale Road near Hodgins Avenue during the Fraser Valley Freedom Rally on Saturday, April 3, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Anti-maskers returning to Chilliwack for “peaceful” protest Saturday

‘They have been strongly instructed to respect downtown businesses,’ according to head of BIA

July 25, 2019:  Zach Clay of Canada during the Pan American Games Men's Artistic Gymnastics podium training at Polideportiva Villa el Salvador in Lima, Peru.   Daniel Lea/CSM
COVID costs Chilliwack gymnast Zach Clay last chance at qualifying for Olympics

Clay won’t be able to compete at the upcoming Senior Pan American Championships in Brazil

Abbotsford school board trustee Phil Anderson has stepped down after sharing an offensive image on Facebook. (File photo)
Abbotsford trustee temporarily steps down after sharing post relating COVID masks to slavery

Phil Anderson to receive training after comparing wearing a mask to slavery on his Facebook page

Motorists breaking travel rules can be fined $230 for failing to follow instructions or $575 if the reason for travel violates the essential travel health order, at this Highway 3 check area near Manning Park. Photo RCMP
RCMP begin stopping drivers on B.C. highways – checkpoint at Manning Park

Four checkpoints are set up Thursday, May 6 around the province

UBC Sports Hall of Famer Carrie (Watson) Watts (far right, front row) helped lead the UBC Thunderbirds to the 2004 national championship, their first since 1974. She served as assistant coach a few years after graduation. (Photo/UBC)
Agassiz-born basketball star inducted into UBC Sports Hall of Fame

Carrie (Watson) Watts helped lead the team to their first championship in decades

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

Junior A team Coquitlam Express is offering all Tri-City residents who get vaccinated against COVID-19 a free ticket to one of their games. (Facebook/Coquitlam Express)
B.C. hockey team offering free tickets to hometown fans who get the COVID-19 vaccine

‘We know the only way to get fans back is people getting vaccinated,’ says Express’ general manager Tali Campbell

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon speaks in the B.C. legislature, describing work underway to make a small business and tourism aid package less restrictive, Dec. 10, 2020. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s latest COVID-19 restrictions cost thousands of service jobs

Part-time workers set back again by spike in virus spread

A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
A sign indicating face coverings are required by the establishment is pictured on the front door of a business in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Leaked report shows detailed B.C. COVID-19 data not being released to public

Documents obtained by the Vancouver Sun show cases broken down by neighbourhoods

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. announced the launch of an app May 7 that connects youth struggling with mental health and substance use with “life-saving” social services. (Screen grab)
5 years in the making: Mental health app for youth and children launches in B.C.

The province provided $1.6-million to fund a virtual care platform

Rex, an elderly golden Labrador retriever, is surrounded by his rescuers in Golden Ears Provincial Park. (Special to The News)
VIDEO: Dog survives plunge over Gold Creek Lower Falls in Maple Ridge

Fire chief asks for visitors to be more cautious in Golden Ears Provincial Park

Amazon has announced the creation of five new facilities in B.C., to employ about 2,000 people. (Amazon/Special to Black Press Media)
Amazon adds new facilities in Langley, Pitt Meadows, Delta, Vancouver

The Vancouver port centre will be the first Amazon centre to feature robotics in B.C.

A worker rides a bike at a B.C. Hydro substation in Vancouver, on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
BC Hydro report raises safety concerns as pandemic prompts jump in yard work

Incidents involving weekend tree trimmers, gardeners and landscapers have risen 30% since the pandemic hit

Most Read