Newcomer lifts Express to 16th home win

Newcomer Will Margel scored the only goal in the shootout, after he had scored his first BC Hockey League goal in the second period, to lead the Coquitlam Express to a 3-2 win over the Chilliwack Chiefs, Friday at the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex.

Margel was Coquitlam’s last of three shooters in the shootout after Chilliwack’s three shooters had failed to beat Express goalie Clay Stevenson. He skated in on Chiefs goalie Mathieu Caron then lifted a backhand over the goalie’s glove.

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The win was the 11th in 12 games in November for the Express, and 16th in a row on home ice this season.

Joshua Wildauer gave the Express a 1-0 lead 14:47 into the first period. Then Margel, who was playing his sixth game in the BCHL since joining Coquitlam from Madison of the US Hockey League, doubled his side’s advantage midway through the second frame.

Chilliwack’s Cooper Moore made it 2-1 when he scored on a power play with 22 seconds left until the break, and Tommy Lyons tied it 11 minutes into the third period.

Neither team was able to score in the five-minute three-on-three overtime, although the Express outshot the Chiefs, 5-2.

With the win, Coquitlam became the first team in the BCHL to hit 50 points, with 25 wins in 30 games. That’s five points more than the Penticton Vees, atop the league standings, and 16 points better than the second-place Chiefs in the Mainland division.

The Express host the Nanaimo Clippers on Sunday at 3 p.m. It’s also the team’s annual Teddy Bear toss and every stuffed toy thrown onto the ice after the home team scores its first goal will be donated to Share for distribution to local families in need this Christmas. The team is also partnering with the Andrés Project to collect gloves, mittens, scarves, toques, socks and travel-sized toiletries, as well as cash donations in return for a reduced admission ticket of $8.

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