First-place Spruce Kings hosting Surrey
Don’t look now but the Prince George Spruce Kings are tops in the B.C. Hockey League’s Mainland Division standings.
They took three of a possible four points last weekend at home in their season-opening B.C. Hockey League series against the Chilliwack Chiefs and have staked their claim on first place in the division with a 1-0-1 record.
The Kings are tied in points with the Surrey Eagles (1-0-1), their opponents tonight and Saturday at Rolling Mix Concrete Arena, but get the nod for first because of their better goals-for, goals-against ratio.
The Chiefs, who will host the 2018 RBC Cup national tournament, came into town ranked sixth in the country in the 132-team Canadian Junior Hockey League preseason poll and the Spruce Kings certainly did some damage to that ranking. They started with a come-from-behind 5-5 double overtime tie with the Chiefs last Friday and ended the weekend set with a confidence-building 8-2 win Saturday.
“We’re pleased with the start but we know we have to keep working to get better every day,” said Spruce Kings head coach Adam Maglio. “It’s definitely nice to see us at the top of the standings and that’s where we want to stay. Both games our guys competed hard and we hung in there, especially when they scored a couple goals (to tie Saturday’s game in the second period). We were able to rebound quickly and get those back and especially in that game we were much more consistent through the whole game.”
Their eight-goal explosion Saturday left three Spruce Kings in the top-10 in league scoring – Ethan de Jong is fourth overall with a goal and four assists for five points, one off the league-leading pace of Vernon forward and BCHL player of the week Lane Lambert. Kings right winger Patrick Cozzi (2-2-4) and left winger Ben Brar (1-3-4), are ninth and 11th on the scoring chart.
— see DeBROUWER, page 8