BCHL players always say they never pay attention to streaks and records.
They’re always focused on the next shift, game, blah blah blah.
But then you look at what Jordan Kawaguchi did Sunday night and you realize they’re probably not being totally honest. If Kawaguchi didn’t care about catching Doug Ast for top spot on Chilliwack’s career scoring list, how do you explain him putting up four points in a 4-3 win over Prince George?
Gooch scored twice and had two assists, adding meaning to an otherwise meaningless season ending game for both teams. A little puck luck and Kawaguchi might have surpassed Ast, but it seems fitting that two of the most popular players in Chilliwack franchise history will share top spot with 242 points.
It took Kawaguchi’s crew a while to warm up in this one.
The Spruce Kings led 1-0 through 20 minutes on a Travis Schneider goal.
Chilliwack goaltender Josh Bolding got his glove on an Ethan Leyh shot but forgot to squeeze, dropping the puck in the blue paint. Schneider nudged it across the line for his 11th of the year.
Prince George scored two in 25 seconds early in period two to take a 3-0 lead.
Adam Burnett beat Bolding on a power play wrister from the top of the left faceoff circle, followed quickly by a Schneider short-side snipe that chased Bolding from the Chilliwack net. Bolding left with 11 saves on 14 shots, replaced by backup Aidan Kirkpatrick who saw his first BCHL action.
By the midpoint of the middle frame the Chiefs had gone 137 minutes without scoring a goal, dating back to the first period of a 3-2 home ice loss to these same Spruce Kings last weekend. Will Calverley finally got Chilliwack a goal at 12:09, scoring his 16th of the year on a Chiefs power play.
Kohen Olischefski found Calverley uncovered in the goal-mouth. Taking the pass, the 18 year old pulled the puck to his forehand and slipped it past Prince George stopper Tevin Grant to snap the drought.
Less than three minutes later, Kawaguchi snuck a short-side shot over Grant’s shoulder to get his team within one.
Shots on goal through 40 minutes favoured his Chiefs 24-20.
Kawaguchi’s second goal tied the game at 3-3 early in the final frame. Olischefski swooped behind the net and put the puck into the blue paint where Gooch popped it past Grant to move within one point of Ast.
Captain K picked up a second assist on the game winning goal to tie Ast.
He flipped the puck to Olivier Arseneau at the left point. The veteran blueliner fired a wrister toward the net and Calverley got his stick on it.
Kawaguchi had one last chance to surge past Ast in the final minutes, but Grant stoned him on a breakaway.
Gooch was an easy choice as first star followed by Olischefski (second) and Kirkpatrick (third).
The Fortis BC Energy Player of the Game was Arseneau.
Announced attendance was 3,254.