Chilliwack Chiefs

Numbers suggest Chilliwack Chiefs are an elite team in BCHL

The record doesn’t show it yet, but everything else points to the Chiefs being a powerhouse

The Chilliwack Chiefs are scoring a lot of goals lately, but just how good are they offensively?

After crunching numbers Tuesday morning (Nov. 30), the answer is really good.

On a goals-per-game basis, the Chiefs are now second in the league at 4.53, trailing only the high-powered Penticton Vees (5.13). Only two other BCHL teams are averaging more than four goals per game, Salmon Arm at 4.16 and West Kelowna at 4.11.

The next highest scoring team in Chilliwack’s Coastal Conference is the Nanaimo Clippers, who click at 3.84 goals per game.

The Merritt Centennials are at the opposite end of the spectrum, having lit the lamp only 26 times in 14 games, for an average of 1.86.

Chilliwack is doing what they do with a ‘scoring by committee’ approach.

No one on the team is within the top 20 in the BCHL points parade. Cameron Johnson is 23rd with 19 points. AJ Lacroix is 34th and Ethan Bowen 36th.

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But the team has nine players averaging .75 points per game or above and every player on the roster except reserves Lucas Sorace, Lucas Bourdon and Brady Milburn have at least one goal.

On the other side of the puck, the Chiefs are the fifth best defensive team in the 18-team league, yielding just 2.87 goals against per game. Within the Coastal Conference, only Langley is stinger at 2.42.

Penticton is the league leader, giving up just 2.19 goals-against per game. Salmon Arm averages 2.32 and Prince George 2.44.

If you factor in November alone, Chilliwack has given up 11 goals in seven games for a minuscule average of 1.57.

Again, the Merritt Centennials are at the other end of the scale, giving up 6.07 goals per game. The Chiefs tagged Powell River for 11 in an 11-1 win last week, and the Kings are the league’s second leakiest squad at 5.39.

Chilliwack fans can also cheer for elite special teams.

The Chiefs power play is firing at 31 per cent, third best in the BCHL behind Prince George (34.3 per cent) and Nanaimo (31.4 per cent).

The Chilliwack penalty kill is best in the league at 88.7 per cent, just ahead of Salmon Arm’s 88.5

Riding a four game win streak that has boosted their record to 9-6-0-0, the Chiefs host Coquitlam Wednesday night (Dec. 3) and Langley Friday night (Dec. 3) before hitting the road to visit Victoria Saturday and Cowichan Valley Sunday.


@ProgressSports
eric.welsh@theprogress.com

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