Goals by Massimo Rizzo and Joshua Wildauer were all the Coquitlam Express needed for a 2-1 victory over the Surrey Eagles, Wednesday at the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex.
It was the BC Hockey League team’s 23rd straight win on home ice this season.
On a snowy, windy night that kept attendance to a smattering of fans in the grey and yellow seats, Rizzo opened the scoring late in the first period with a rapier shot that glanced off the crossbar and behind Eagles’ goalie Reece Klassen..
Wildauer then extended the home team’s advantage five minutes into the second period with his 13th goal of the season.
A late push by the Eagles paid off when Hudson Schandor scored with a little more than two minutes remaining in the third period and Klassen on the bench for an extra attacker. But that’s as close as the visitors got as Express keeper Jack Watson stopped 23 of the 24 shots he faced to earn his ninth win of the season.
Coquitlam remains atop the BCHL league standings, eight points ahead of the Penticton Vees.
On Monday, the Express climbed to second place in the overall rankings of Junior A teams across Canada, just behind the Brooks Bandits of the Alberta Junior Hockey League.
Coquitlam travels to Chilliwack on Friday to play the Chiefs before returning home for a game against Cowichan Valley on Sunday at 3 p.m. That will be the first of four games a Poirier to carry the Express through to the end of the month.