The Chilliwack Chiefs survived a home date with a banged up but feisty Powell River Kings squad Thursday night, winning 4-3 in overtime at the Chilliwack Coliseum.
After coughing up an early two goal lead, the Chiefs had to stage a third period rally to get this one to extra time. Once they did, Cooper Moore capped off the comeback as his team improved to 14-9-4-1, solidifying their hold on second place in the Mainland division standings.
Chilliwack’s red hot power play opened the scoring at 7:08 on a goal by newcomer Tommy Lyons.
With Powell River forward Brett Pfoh in the box for a hit on former King Nathan Kelly, the Chiefs never left the offensive zone. The visitors failed on two chances to clear and eventually the puck found the stick of Lyons. The Massachusetts product ripped the puck past Powell River goalie Derek Krall for his second goal and fourth point in his first three games with Chilliwack.
The Chiefs PP came into the game ranked second in the league behind Trail at a lethal 26.1 per cent.
One hundred and eight seconds later, rookie defenceman Hudson Thornton put the puck on net from the left point. It looked like it might have hit something on its way into the net, but Thornton got credit for his second of the season.
The only bad news, potentially big, in the opening frame came when Chilliwack points leader Ethan Bowen was forced out of the game with an injury. Bowen delivered a cross-check to a Powell River player in the neutral zone and immediately dropped one of his gloves and his hockey stick.
The teenager went straight to the dressing room and didn’t return.
The Chiefs rolled on without him and had this game on cruise control until late in the middle frame, when the Kings scored three goals in 73 seconds.
Ethan Schmunk got Powell River started, jamming the puck past Chilliwack goalie Kolby Thornton at 14:55.
The netminder had his right leg stretched out, trying desperately to hold the puck out at the post. But he didn’t get a whistle from the ref and on the third or fourth whack, Schmunk was able to shove it across the line.
Forty seconds later it was defenceman Davis Pennington sniping his first of the season, fitting the disc under the crossbar with a rocket shot.
At 16:08, Thornton tried to steer the rebound of a Jacob Bandal shot into the corner. Instead, it found the stick of Dawson McKay at the top of the crease and the Michigan product buried his ninth of the year.
Playing his first game with his new team after being acquired in a trade for Carter Wilkie, Trevor Adams scored the tying goal 6:17 into period three.
Credit Kelly with a nice hold at the point, and credit Brett Willits with a nice skate-to-stick kick pass to put Adams in prime shooting position. The 20 year old forward punched it past Krall for his sixth of the season, sending this match to overtime.
The winner came 97 seconds into the extra session, off the stick of Moore.
Willits did the heavy lifting, circling the zone waiting for a chance to put a centering pass into the crease. Moore went to the net as Willits found a seam and saucered the puck through. Moore was able to smack the puck past Krall for the dramatic win.
The three stars were Moore (first), Pennington (second) and Willits (third).
The Fortis BC Energy Player of the Game was Brett Rylance.
Chilliwack is on the road for their only game this weekend, visiting the Coquitlam Express (24-5-0-0) Friday.