FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John Huskies got three out of four possible points this past weekend as they hosted both the top and the bottom teams in the NWJHL.
On Saturday night, a crowd of nearly 700 packed the North Peace Arena to watch the Huskies take on the Dawson Creek Jr. Canucks. The Jr. Canucks outplayed the Pups for the first period, and had a 4-1 lead to show for it.
Matthew Apsassin and Gary Loewen got the Dogs back close in the second, whittling the Jr. C’s lead to just one.
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Early in the third, Jonathan Bateman flashed the leather with a huge save to keep the score 4-3, and that seemed to start the Huskies. Just over a minute later, Adam Bowie scored a huge goal to tie the game 4-4 assisted by Apsassin and Aiden Tegart. Over overtime solved nothing, the two teams headed to a shootout.
Mark Readman and Wesley Shipton both scored for Dawson Creek, while the Jr. Canucks’ goalie and Cecil Lake native Logan Edwards was able to stop Jacob Lang’s attempt. Matthew Apsassin got a brilliant tipsy-doodle past Edwards for the Pups, but sadly after Bateman stoned Dustin Bahm, Brandon Howard’s shot went wide, giving the Jr. C’s the shootout win.
Edwards said after the game that he was incredibly excited to get his first win of the season, especially after he didn’t make the Huskies’ roster at the beginning of the season. Edwards played for Fort St. John last season. “I had a bunch of friends here watching me tonight. It was unbelievable that we can out with the performance that we did. Can’t thank the guys enough for having my back all night,” said Edwards.
On Sunday, it was an entirely different story as the Huskies trounced the Beaverlodge Blades. Brandon Howard opened the scoring for the Pups just 1:19 into the first with an unassisted goal. Both Howard and Matthew Apsassin would score a pair of goals in the first period. Lou Turnbull-Giesbrecht, Shawn Wilson, and Jacob Lang also each tallied goals as the Huskies led the Blades 7-0 after twenty minutes.
Although Evan Tordiff managed to break backup netminder Tavis Viens’ shutout just 1:10 into the second, the Huskies’ special teams answered back. Kyle Crawford scored shorthanded just past the halfway mark, while Apsassin scored his first-ever NWJHL hat trick with a power play goal just shy of two minutes left.
Crawford and Lang both scored their second goals of the game in the third period, as the Huskies out shot the Blades 54-14, and outscored their opponents 11-1. The Huskies are back in action on Friday night, when they host the Fairview Flyers at the North Peace Arena. Puck drop is at 8:30 p.m.