Photo Credit: Damon James
BURNABY, BC — For the third straight game, Tyler Basham has scored a goal, and this time it was just in the nick of time to put SFU up 4-3 with a minute to go to end it in regulation against the University of Victoria Vikes.
“Grabbed the puck coming down across the blueline, the d-man came at me, I just pulled it around him and I was in a decent shooting range, a quick snap shot and sneaked it by left pad,” said Basham, who has scored in every game so far since returning from a shoulder injury.
Before this three-goal stretch, he had been held goalless in four games before the injury.
“Just been feeling good out there, been playing with confidence,” Basham continued. “Been getting lucky, chances have been going in.”
With Trinity Western and Selkirk College just one point behind before the game started — and playing each other at the same time — SFU needed the win to remain in first.
SFU opened with two quick goals in the first period, just over two minutes apart from each. Robert Izsak opened the scoring with his third goal of the year from Spencer Unger and Sam Chatterley, who formed a formidable checking line. Mak Barden added his fifth of the year from Basham and Brandon Tidy to put SFU up 2-0 against a depleted Vikes roster.
However, the Vikes fought back hard in the second, with Jack Palmer putting them on the board with his first of the year exactly halfway through the frame.
Just 30 seconds into the third, Patrick Holland put the Vikes within one with his ninth of the season. Shaun Mueller tied it up with his 10th goal, which leads the BCIHL, with 15:35 left.
The Vikes controlled much of the third.
But even before Basham’s goal, the Clan started to turn the tide, with Mitch Crisanti doing everything he could to end the deadlock — shooting and setting up a few close chances.
“Our guys did well to battle back after they tied it. We’ll take the win,” said head coach Mark Coletta.
While this marked the first time in five games that Lyndon Stanwood has allowed more than two goals, Stanwood made a variety of key saves to keep SFU in the game, particularly in the third period. SFU outshot UVic 40-30. The Clan struggled on the power play, going zero for four.
With an overtime win by Trinity Western over Selkirk College, and another game for Trinity Western tonight, SFU will likely have to win to stay ahead in first. SFU is one point ahead of Trinity Western and two points ahead of Selkirk College (and a game in hand).
“We’re ahead of the pack, so we’ve got to stay there,” said Coletta. “Two points is a must tomorrow.”
SFU will play its last game of 2016 tonight, as part of the second night of back-to-home games against UVic. The Clan have earned 11 of a possible 12 points in back-to-back games, but have not yet played a back-to-back at home. Jordan Liem is expected to get the start.
Puck drop is at 7 pm at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre. If you attended last night’s game, bring your ticket stub and receive free admission for tonight’s game. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and free for children under 6 or for SFU students with valid ID. The game will also be streamed live on FASTHockey.
1st Star: SFU #1 Lyndon Stanwood (27 Saves, .900 SV%)
2nd Star: UVic # 23 Patrick Holland (1G, 1A)
3rd Star: SFU #61 Robert Izsak (1G, 0A)
AROUND THE BCIHL: Trinity Western beat Selkirk College in a 7-6 overtime thriller in Castlegar. The Spartans had a 5-2 lead in the second period, but the Saints battled back to tie it up. Trinity Western freshman forward Jarrett Fontaine put up three goals and two assists, while Jamey Kreller had two goals and three assists. Fellow Spartan freshman Evan Last had four assists and now sits atop the BCIHL points race. Trinity Western heads to Eastern Washington tonight for their last game of 2016.