Saturday, March 19, 2011

GAME 2 PREVIEW: Eagles vs. Kings

SERIES- The Kings drew first blood in the Conference Finals with a 4-2 win in game one. The score wasn't indicative of how the game went. Powell River was guilty of letting off the gas pedal in the final fourty minutes.

Surrey will be looking to bounce back from a sub par performance in game one. Just like Powell River, the Eagles fought consistency last night. However it was their start not finish that was the issue. The Eagles surrendered three first period goals to the Kings. Goes to show how important every goal can be, as Niddery's short handed marker proved to be too much to come back from.


Kings- The Kings have an opportunity to take a commanding lead in the series with a win tonight. Powell River missed out in round two against the Grizzlies, as Victoria earned a split in the first two games. I believe that went along way to the 3-1 series deficit against the Grizz'. At this juncture of the season every game is like a game seven and the Kings can't let Surrey grab any confidence.

Depth up front played a prominant role last night as it did in game seven with Victoria. The fourth line of the Hawryluk twins and Mike Sones opened the scoring and gave the Kings an early lead in game one. The Kings will need more of the same tonight. Having all four lines rolling is crucial in the longer run to a championship. The more you can lengthen you bench the more fresh your team is going deeper into this series.

Special teams was a 50-50 split last night in game one. The power-play struggled and showed signs of where it was at early in the Victoria series. Heading into last night, the Kings scored four goals on their last seven man advantages. On the flip side, the penalty-kill was better last night keeping the Eagles off the board on six short handed situations. As a bonus both Chad Niddery and Mat Garbowsky scored short-handed, Niddery's was the game winner in the first period. The Grizzlies victimized the PK in round two and game one's performance showed signs it's rounding back into form.

Eagles- The start will need to be betterin game two for the Surrey. In the first period they looked a step behind the play and had numerous turn overs inside their blue line. However, as the game progressed into the second and third the Eagles were better and were just one shot away of tying the game at three's.

Their power-play like Powell River's was their achilles heel last night. Surrey had a six on four late in the third period with the goalie pulled by failed to put one by Mike Garteig. The Eagles had their fair share of chances on the man advantage but for what ever reason it just seemed they couldn't get it going.

I thought their depth forwards picked up the slack in the game when they were down by three. The Eagles got solid contributions from Hayden Trupp, Colton Mackie and Robert Lindores. The Morley brothers as per usual were hitting anything that moved in a white sweater and were great on the PK. Tyler and Brandon combined for six short handed goals in the regular season.

WHO'S HOT- With a goal last night Andrew Pettitt has three points in his last two games. That line of Pettit-Forbes-Schuler of combined for seven points in two games.

The Surrey penalty-kill has been almost unbeatable this post season. Coming into tonight's game, the Eagles have only allowed five goals against and the PK is humming along at 97 percent. Surrey has proven the can turn it up short handed, as they have three goals on the PK thus far.

STAT PACK- This is the fourth meeting between these two teams in the playoffs since 1997. The Kings have won the last two series in '09(4-1) &'08 (3-1).

PUCK DROP:  The Wolf Brewing Company will be having a beverage garden in the Arbutus room prior and during the intermissions of tonight's game. They will also be showing the Salmon Arm-Vernon game and the Hockey Night in Canada match ups.

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