Consistency has been elusive for the Ridge Meadows Flames this Pacific Junior Hockey League season.
The one constant for the Flames of late: the win some, lose some pattern they’ve been following this month.
The Flames saw their two-game win streak come to an end last Thursday at the Mission Leisure Centre, where they lost 3-2 to the host Mission Outlaws.
The next night at Planet Ice Maple Ridge, the PJHL Harold Brittain Conference-leading Abbotsford Pilots scored the only three goals of the second period and the lone goal of the third to snap a 1-1 tie, en route to a 5-1 win over the Flames.
Travis Oddy tied the game at 1-1 on a Flames powerplay with 1:32 remaining in the first period.
From that point on, it was all Pilots, who outshot the Flames 25-8 in the second period and 20-12 in the final frame. Overall, the Pilots levied 55 shots on goal to the Flames’ 26.
Five different Pilots scored in the victory.
On Sunday afternoon, the Flames showed their moxie by beating a good Grandview Steelers team 5-2 at the Burnaby Winter Club.
The Steelers fell to 6-4-1-2 and are tied with the Richmond Steelers for second place in the PJHL’s Tom Shaw Conference.
The Flames improved to 4-6-2-1 and are alone in third place in the five team Harold Brittain Conference, behind the 8-3-0-1 Pilots and 8-4 Aldergrove Kodiaks.
The local juniors didn’t have a lot of time to prepare for the game, which had a 4 p.m. start.
Nicholas Maydaniuk and Marco Ballarin staked Ridge Meadows to a 2-0 lead after the first period, and the Flames moved ahead 4-0 after 40 minutes on second period goals from Maydaniuk (shorthanded and unassisted) and Grant Rostvig.
Jackson Beavis scored the Steelers’ first goal of the game 5:51 into the third period.
The Flames struck back with a powerplay goal from Ballarin, 10:47 into the period.
The Steelers’ Mitchell Steinke rounded out the game’s scoring on a Grandview powerplay with 6:18 remaining in regulation time.
The Flames play back-to-back starting tonight (Thursday, Oct. 24) against the host Richmond Sockeyes. Game time at Richmond Arena is 7 p.m.
Then, tomorrow night (Friday, Oct. 25), the Flames host the North Delta Devils at Planet Ice, with a 7:30 p.m. opening puck drop.
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