CANUCKS FALL IN HENDERSON, LOSE 5-2 TO SILVER KNIGHTS
The Abbotsford Canucks took to the ice on Thursday night at The Dollar Loan Center for their seventh meeting of the season with the Henderson Silver Knights.
Phil Di Giuseppe entered the contest just one point shy of the Abbotsford franchise record for all-time points (69), which is held by current Silver Knights forward Sheldon Rempal. Chad Nychuk made his return to the Abbotsford lineup, as well as Arturs Silovs who was making his first start in the Canucks’ crease since being named AHL Goaltender of the Month in February.
Across the ice from Silovs was Isaiah Saville, who made his first start of the season in the Silver Knights’ goal.
Spencer Foo got the scoring started early in the contest, as his wrist shot from the circles beat Silovs. Foo’s sixth of the season came less than two minutes into the contest. 10 minutes later, Daniil Chayka notched his first career AHL goal, burying a cross-crease pass from Pavel Dorofeyev.
The two goals from Foo and Chayka would be all of the scoring action from the opening 20 minutes, giving the hosts a 2-0 lead as the two sides were sent to the locker rooms for intermission. Henderson outshot Abbotsford 9-7, with neither side taking any trips to the penalty box.
Abbotsford opened the second period with a flurry of chances, including a mad scramble in front of Saville as Matt Alfaro couldn’t quite jam the puck home. Soon after, the Canucks put their powerplay unit to work, but were unsuccessful despite another handful of chances.
On the Canucks’ 12th effort of opening seven minutes of the middle period, Nils Höglander would get Abbotsford on the board. Collecting a pass from Arsh Bains, Höglander worked his way towards goal before firing a shot towards Saville. The chance was turned aside, however the Swedish winger followed up on his own rebound and tucked it into the yawning cage for his third goal in the last two games.
The tally would also come on the man advantage, with Höglander’s 11th of the year cutting the deficit to just one. Abbotsford continued their offensive pressure, mustering up a total of 20 shots in the middle frame alone. However it would be former Canuck, Sheldon Rempal, to re-establish Henderson’s two goal advantage.
Collecting the puck from Gemel Smith from the right boards, Rempal slapped home his 18th of the season with five minutes remaining in the second, with that one also coming on the power play.
The clock would wind down to the second intermission, with Abbotsford trailing 3-1, despite outshooting their opposition 27-16.
Henderson came out of the break the same way they left off, as they buried their fourth goal of the night seven minutes into the third period. Daniil Miromanov got on the end of a centering pass from Smith, who buried his seventh of the season on his backhand over the shoulder of Silovs.
Just over four minutes later, Jack Rathbone collected the puck from Quinn Schmiemann before stepping into a slapshot. The shot rifled past the glove of Saville and goes off the under side of the cross bar, giving Rathbone his second goal in as many games.
Rathbone’s fourth of the season temporarily cut the deficit to two once again, before Brendan Brisson slid the puck into the slot for an incoming Kaedan Korczak. Korczak’s quick release beat Silovs, setting up a 5-2 lead for the hosts.
That is how the contest would end, with Abbotsford falling 5-2 to the Silver Knights in Henderson. Arsh Bains picked up his fourth career multi-point game, while Jack Rathbone and Nils Höglander both scored in their second consecutive games. Arturs Silovs turned aside 21 of the 26 efforts he saw, while Isaiah Saville picked up his first win of the season with 33 saves on 35 Canucks’ shots.
For the full AHL box score, please click HERE.
Up next for Abbotsford is a rematch in Henderson on Saturday, March 4th. Then after that contest, Abbotsford returns home for a six game homestand, starting on March 7th. The Canucks face off with the Manitoba Moose on March 7th and 8th, before the Colorado Eagles come to town. The pair of games with the Eagles get underway on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon. Then it will be a week of rest for the team, followed by a rematch with the Ontario Reign on Friday March 17th and Saturday March 18th.
To purchase tickets to an upcoming Abbotsford Canucks’ game, please click HERE.