Four games remain in the regular season, and not one means anything to the North Delta Devils.
After winning one of two Pacific International Junior Hockey League games last weekend, the Devils have clinched a third place finish in the Tom Shaw Conference, unable to pass the second place Delta Ice Hawks and unable to be caught by the fourth-place North Vancouver Wolf Pack.
The Devils defeated the Abbotsford Pilots 2-1 on the road Friday night, despite getting outshot 34-25. Steve Myland made 34 saves in the North Delta goal, lowering his goals against average to 2.79, fifth-best in the league.
The Devils trailed 1-0 after one period. Stephen Campbell tied the contest with a powerplay goal six minutes into the second frame, then assisted on Tanner Lenting’s winner two minutes later.
North Delta was drubbed 7-1 by the league-leading Richmond Sockeyes Saturday afternoon. Although the Devils were the home team, the game was played at the Richmond Olympic Oval as part of CBC’s Hockey Day in Canada broadcast.
Playing just 15 hours after their game in Abbotsford, North Delta couldn’t keep pace with Richmond in a penalty-filled contest. The Sockeyes outshot their guests 42-19, and enjoyed period leads of 3-0 and 7-1.
Stefan Burzan notched the lone North Delta goal late in the second period, scoring two minutes after starting goalie Harry Fredeman was chased from the Devils goal with Richmond up 5-0.
Surrey native Justin Rai assisted on four Sockeyes goals.
Richmond scored three times on eight powerplay opportunities, while the Devils were blanked on six extra-man situations. North Delta was assessed 61 minutes in penalties, to just 39 for the Sockeyes.
The Devils will host the Ice Hawks in an all-Delta battle Saturday night at 6:45 p.m. in the Sungod Arena, then play at the Burnaby Winter Club against the Grandview Steelers at 4 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.