Chiefs edge Silverbacks in OT

BCHL, Chilliwack Chiefs, Salmon Arm Silverbacks, junior A hockey

Trevor Hills scored the overtime winner as the Chilliwack Chiefs dumped the Salmon Arm Silverbacks 4-3 Saturday night at Prospera Centre.

The Chiefs rallied in the third period to beat their Interior conference rivals for the third time in three meetings this season, stretching their current winning streak to four games.

Super rookie Garrett Forster opened the scoring in this one, lighting the lamp just two minutes and 21 seconds in.

Leading a two-on-one rush, the 16-year-old Delta native opted for the shot, going over Salmon Arm netminder Adam Clark’s glove for his third of the year. Jaret Babych drew the only assist on Forster’s tally, then scored one of his own 12 minutes later.

David Bondra set him up, wheeling out of the left corner with a backhand pass into the slot. Babych had time to settle the puck down before picking the top corner for his fourth of the season.

Chilliwack goaltender Mitch Gillam earned his post-game dinner at the other end. The Ontario native turned in an eye-popping stop on Garrett Hendrickson, robbing the Minnesotan with a lightning quick glove hand.

Twice, Gillam made tough kick saves on Devin Muller in tight.

Shots on goal through 20 minutes favoured Salmon Arm 10-8.

The tables turned on the goalie and his teammates in period two as the Salmon Arm offence woke up. Penalties got Chilliwack in trouble when David Thompson (kneeing) and Josh Hansen (tripping) put the Chiefs two men down.

With 20 ticks left in Hansen’s minor, Saskatchewan native Bryce Gervais rifled a top shelf shot past Gillam at 7:58 for his team-leading 15th of the year.

Gervais struck again with 5:25 left in the middle frame.

Devin Muller earned the assist with a shot that clanged off the glass behind the Chilliwack net and took a fortuitous bounce onto the stick of Gervais. The 19-year-old tucked the puck inside the right post to knot the game at 2-2.

Salmon Arm took the lead with 1:46 left in the second period. With the Chiefs running around in their own zone, Surrey’s Kody Dhaliwal collected the rebound from a Graham McBain shot and beat Gillam short-side for his fifth.

Despite out-shooting Salmon Arm 16-13, Chilliwack trailed 3-2 heading to the final frame.

Things looked bleak in the third period as the Chiefs struggled to generate offence. But when a series of penalties led to a four-on-three power play for the home team, Malcolm Gould took advantage of the open ice.

The ex-Quesnel Millionaire vacuumed up a loose puck behind the Salmon Arm net and caught Silverbacks netminder Clark napping. Gould got his fifth of the year on a perfectly executed wraparound, sending this game to OT.

Trevor Hills is quickly getting a rep for being money in the clutch.

With 3:04 remaining in the first four-on-four extra session, the New York native cut across the slot, beating Terrace native Brendan Kennedy one on one. Hills finished with a backhander inside the right post, getting Chilliwack its fourth straight win with his ninth of the year.

The three stars were Michael Spring (Chilliwack, third), Gervais (second) and Babych (first).

Announced attendance was 2,059.

The Chiefs are back at Prospera Centre Thursday, taking on the Vernon Vipers. Puck drop is 7 p.m.