Abbotsford Pilots drop pair of games at Winter Classic

PJHL team still looking for first win of 2018

The Abbotsford Pilots are still looking to get in the win column for 2018.

The Pacific Junior Hockey League club opened the new year at the league’s Winter Classic event in Richmond last weekend, but dropped both games they competed in.

Abbotsford opened the event on Jan. 5 against the Ridge Meadows Flames, but trailed 2-0 early into the second period and never recovered to lose 3-2.

Jamie Housch and Ryan MacDonald scored for the Pilots, who were outshot 32-25. Pilots goalie Gunnar Neilsen made 29 saves in the loss.

The club returned to action in Richmond on Sunday, but lost 3-2 to the Aldergrove Kodiaks.

After a scoreless opening period, the Pilots had leads of 1-0 and 2-1, but couldn’t hang on.

Baylee Wright and Mateo Toledo tallied for Abbotsford, but the club managed just 16 shots against Aldergrove. Neilsen made 22 saves in a losing cause.

Abbotsford’s record now sits at 19 wins, 11 losses, one tie and three overtime losses. They remain in second place in the PJHL’s Harold Brittain conference.

The Pilots return to action tonight (Friday) when they host the Grandview Steelers. Face-off is set for 7:30 p.m. at the MSA Arena.

In other PJHL news, four members of the Pilots are heading to the league’s all-star game in Langley on Monday.

Forwards Baylee Wright, Mateo Toledo and Noah Wiebe, along with defender Tyler Wickman, have all been selected to represent the Brittain conference at mid-season game. They will join players from Aldergrove, Langley, Mission, Ridge Meadows and Surrey to take on the Tom Shaw conference.

That game occurs at 7 p.m. in Langley.