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Abbotsford Canucks

Don’t Reign on My Parade: Abbotsford Canucks Claim First Win

the Abbotsford Canucks have claimed their first victory in franchise history, topping the Ontario Reign 3-2 in a thrilling shootout

Don’t Reign on My Parade: Abbotsford Canucks Claim First Win

VANCOUVER, BC – It took them two games, but the Abbotsford Canucks have claimed their first victory in franchise history, topping the Ontario Reign 3-2 in a thrilling shootout. 

With no rest as the team headed down from Bakersfield, the Canucks began preparing for a tough contest. They would be facing off against a very good Reign squad, complete with former league MVP Martin Frk

Before puck drop, a bombshell was dropped. Arturs Silovs, the 2019 Vancouver sixth-rounder, would make his first AHL start of the year. He got one game with the Manitoba Moose last year, but this would be his first action in Canuck colors. 

It was the Reign that seized the initiative early. Starting out strong, they pelted rubber at Silovs who stood tall and firm. He allowed the Canucks to slowly play themselves into the game, managing to find their legs and get better as the period wore on. 

The second line of Di GiuseppeFochtLockwood proved to be a very effective one through the first frame, generating the best chances with speed and skill. In an otherwise quiet first period, the teams really lacked an edge or energy, finishing with a 0-0 scoreline. 

However, as the second period got underway, the Canucks would come out of the gates with an early powerplay opportunity. Though the unit could never get set up properly, in the waning seconds it was Danila Klimovich scoring for the second game in a row. 

It was the first powerplay goal in franchise history, as the 18-year-old is rapidly making his name known in North American hockey. 

The goal didn’t provide much in terms of momentum though, as only three minutes later the Reign responded. Some sloppy coverage in the neutral zone allowed them to rush in on a three-on-one, and Alex Turcotte simply redirected the puck past a sprawling Silovs. All of a sudden, it was all knotted up. 

Frk and his line began to take it to the Canucks, skating literal circles around the offensive zone. At times, the puck movement and speed of the Reign made it seem like they were on a powerplay. 

The Canucks’ best player in the period was Phil Di Giuseppe, and it was him that gave the lead back to the visitors. Circling up at the right point, the former Ranger threw a shot on net, finding a gap between Ingham’s wickets. 

Three minutes passed again before the Reign found their answer. Off a routine dump-in on the powerplay, the puck took a very friendly bounce into the slot. Brayden Burke pounced on the chance and fired it past a very unaware Silovs. 

The second would come to an end after some more sustained pressure by the Reign. Though the Canucks had their moments, Ontario was definitely calling the shots for the large majority of the game. Silovs was a huge reason why the game stayed all knotted up, and continued to be heading into the third. 

Lockwood was missing from the Canuck bench, presumably due to an injury. In his place was Klimovich, who looked better than he did against the Condors. The kid was much more engaged defensively and showed more consistent bursts of his offensive talent. Of course, there were rough sequences, but progression was shown. 

As for the Canucks, they managed to hang in there from the onslaught that Reign brought. Wagner and Frk in particular challenged Silovs plenty, but no pucks found their way into the back of the net. As the third wound down, overtime would be required at a minimum. 

In OT, the Canucks would find themselves shorthanded right away. Madison Bowey took a slashing call that forced an important penalty kill from his team. Abbotsford admirably killed it off, but Ontario kept pressing, momentum firmly on their side. Only heroics from Silovs kept the Canucks in it.

With overtime solving nothing, the teams moved into a shootout. Klimovich, Bailey, and Stevens went for the Canucks, while Madden, Fagemo, and Turcotte stepped to the plate for the Reign. All of them missed, moving the shootout to sudden death. Frk’s attempt was snagged by Silovs glove, setting up Di Giuseppe to play hero. 

Takeaways

 

With the win, Abbotsford moves to 1-1-0 on the season, as Silovs picks up his first AHL win with a 34 save effort. Up next is another date with the Reign, with puck drop set for October 19th at 7 PM.

Download the Field Pass Hockey app from the iTunes or Google Play stores or follow @FieldPassHockey on Twitter for the latest news on the AHL, ECHL, and SPHL throughout the 2021 season!

    Michael Liu covers the Abbotsford Canucks for Field Pass Hockey. Follow and interact with him on Twitter @FPHCanucks.

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