Prince George 3
Alberni Valley 2
You win some, you lose more.
Chilliwack Chiefs' struggles continued last weekend, as they snapped a five-game losing streak but also dropped a pair of games to division rivals.
The Chiefs beat the Alberni Valley Bulldogs 5-2 Sunday, but bracketed that victory with losses to the Prince George Spruce Kings Saturday and the Coquitlam Express Monday.
Spruce Kings goalie Kirk Thompson turned away 44 shots Saturday as Prince George downed Chilliwack 3-1 at Prospera Centre. Despite outshooting the Spruce Kings 21-10 in the first period, the Chiefs failed to score on a five-minute power play and found themselves down 1-0 through 20 minutes.
Chilliwack killed off their own major penalty-a boarding call on Ryan Donohoe-to start the second and Luke Esposito evened the score midway through the period to put the team's on level-footing.
But Coltyn Hansen restored the Spruce Kings' lead with 3: 31 remaining in the second.
Chilliwack outshot Prince George 14-5 in the third period, but Thompson held the fort.
The Chiefs' inability to score with the man advantage cost them all night. With 47 seconds left, Prince George took another penalty, but Chilliwack was unable to capitalize and tie the game up. Instead, Mark Begert scored to seal the Spruce King win. Chilliwack went 0-for-6 with the power play on the night.
The Chiefs made amends the following evening against an Alberni Valley Bulldogs squad playing their third game in as many nights.
After a scoreless first period, Philip Zielonka scored on the power play to put the Chiefs ahead.
But Hunter Stewart replied five minutes later for the Bulldogs.
The Chiefs have struggled in the second-half of games recently, but avoided those troubles Sunday.
Esposito and Austin Plevy tallied within 138 seconds of each other to give Chilliwack the lead entering the third.
And although the Bulldogs would pull to within a goal seven minutes into the final period, markers by Jaret Babych and Zielonka put a cap on the Chiefs' first win since Jan. 23.
On Sunday, the Chiefs found themselves at the end of their own three-games-in-three days stretch as they ventured down the highway to take on the Coquitlam Express. Whether related to tiredness or not, they also found themselves making frequent trips to the Poirier Sports and Leisure penalty box.
Fittingly, the Chiefs opened the scoring with a shorthanded marker by Austin Plevy 1: 12 into the second period.
But ex-Chief Ben Israel evened the score 12 minutes later with a power-play goal. It was the sixth time Israel has found the net in just 12 games since being dealt from the Chiefs.
The Express then took the lead early in the third, and extended it on another man advantage to round out the scoring.
The Express went 2-for-9 on the power play, as the Chiefs tripped, interfered and elbowed their way to their seventh loss in eight games.
The Chiefs have clinched a playoff spot and remain in second place in the Mainland Division. But Prince George is just six points back in the battle for third place, with one game in hand. The Chiefs and Spruce Kings look set to battle each other in the first round of the BCHL playoffs and home ice advantage will determine which team must make an extra road trip between the distant divisional rivals.