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Coquitlam Express to face Chilliwack Chiefs in BCHL playoffs

The two teams met nine times during the regular season.
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Coquitlam Express and Chilliwack Chiefs played nine times this season. The teams will play each other at least four more times, as they face off in the first round of the BCHL playoffs beginning April 1, 2022.

The Coquitlam Express will play the Chilliwack Chiefs in the first round of the BC Hockey League (BCHL) playoffs.

The best-of-seven series opens Friday (April 1) in Chilliwack, with game two following the next night. Games three and four will be played April 4 and 5, 7 p.m., at the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex.

The Chiefs secured second place in the coastal conference with a 4-1 win over the Express Saturday (March 26) in Chilliwack.

The victory put the team in a tie with the Nanaimo Clippers. Each finished the regular season with 70 points and identical win-loss records. But the Chiefs got the edge in the standings by defeating Nanaimo in three of their four meetings during the season.

Coquitlam finished seventh in the division, 20 points behind Chilliwack. The two teams met nine times during the season, with the Express winning twice.

Saturday, in what turned out to be a preview of their playoff series, Tyler Kopff gave the Express a 1-0 lead when he scored the only goal of the first period. But after that, it was all Chiefs.

Cameron Johnson’s power play goal 1:31 into the second period tied it, then a pair of goals by Dawson Good in the third period followed by Jack Seymour's empty-netter propelled Chilliwack to its win.

Adam Manji stopped 22 of the 25 shots he faced in Coquitlam’s net, while his teammates fired only 17 at Chilliwack’s Grant Riley.

Perhaps sensing their collision course towards the post-season, it was a chippy game with four players — two from each team — drawing misconduct penalties and several sent off for roughing minors after skirmishes.

Both the Chiefs and Express have momentum going into their playoff showdown.

Chilliwack has won six games in a row, while Coquitlam’s loss was its first in seven games.