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Coquitlam Express lead at Western tourney
The Coquitlam Express have kept their winning streak alive, taking the first two games of the Western Canada Cup finals in Dauphin, Man., this week.
The club, which is representing the BCHL at the four-league round-robin tournament, knocked off Spruce Grove of the Alberta Junior Hockey League before defeating the Winnipeg Blues of the Manitoba Junior Hockey League on Monday.
With the wins, the Express now sit in first place at the tournament, which decides who gets to go to the RBC Cup national championship in Vernon next month.
Coquitlam got the tournament off to a strong start with a 3-1 win over the Spruce Grove Saints Sunday night.
Express captain Ryan Rosenthal opened the scoring, burying a pass from line mate Adam Rockwood 14 minutes into the opening period.
The Saints would strike back in the second, with a marker from Isaac Farrah, but that would be all the offence the Alberta squad could muster.
Cannon Pieper made it 2-1 seven minutes into the second on a pass from his brother, Bo, before Rosenthal struck again with the insurance marker to finish off the game 3-1.
Express net minder Gordie Defiel stopped 31 of the 32 shots he faced and Rosenthal received first-star honours for his two-point performance.
Coquitlam was back in action Monday night, defeating the Winnipeg Blues 2-1 in Game 2 of the round-robin tournament.
Rosenthal had another big game, opening the scoring 15 minutes into the first, before Brendan Lamont made it 2-0 with 40 seconds left in the first.
The Blues managed one goal on the power play in the second period but Defiel, who was named first-star of the game, withstood a flurry of shots in the third to help his team hang on to the lead.
Coquitlam is now in first place at the tournament and will take on the Yorkton Terriers on Wednesday night. If they finish in the top two, the club will punch their ticket to the national championships in Vernon next month.
For more information go to www.westerncanadacup.com.