Chiefs confident heading into post-season

Langley Chiefs goaltender Wyatt Galley looks for the puck after making a save against the Salmon Arms Silverbacks in the Chiefs' regular season finale. Galley will be counted on to come up big as Langley opens the BCHL playoffs against the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.

Five wins in their final six games have the Langley Chiefs feeling good about their game heading into the post-season.“There is a lot of confidence in the room,” said leading scorer Josh Myers, who was named the team’s co-MVP, among his other awards. (go to www.langleytimes.com for the award winners). He shared the MVP with captain Trevor Gerling.Myers led the team with 40 goals and 40 assists, good for second in the league in goals scored and seventh in points.The confidence comes from the team’s strong play down the stretch which clinched Langley third place in the B.C. Hockey League’s Coastal Conference.It sets up a best-of-seven playoff series against the sixth-place Alberni Valley Bulldogs. Games one and two are tonight (Friday) and Saturday at the Langley Events Centre, with a 7 p.m. puck drop both nights.The Chiefs went 3-0-1 during the season against the Bulldogs.“But the playoffs are a completely different season,” Myers said.The season has seen some wild swings from the Chiefs.Over the first six weeks, the team was lights out, losing just once in regulation in their first 14 games (11-1-0-2). But the next 40 games saw the team play sub-.500 hockey, especially in December and January, as they struggled, going 15-19-1-6.But February was much kinder, with five wins in six tries and Langley hopes to ride that wave into a lengthy post-season run.“We can’t look back at what happened in the middle of the season,” Myers cautioned. “We have to look past that.”Alberni Valley finished 18 points back of Langley in the standings.The series pits the conference’s highest scoring team — the Chiefs averaged four goals per game — against Alberni Valley’s 2.93 goals.One advantage head-to-head the Bulldogs do have is goals against, allowing 3.28 goals per game compared to Langley’s 3.62.Offensively, Alberni Valley was led by Josh Mitchell (17 goals, 45 assists) and Casey Bailey (28 goals, 30 assists).For Langley, Myers, Gerling (30 goals, 42 assists), Matt Ius (28 goals, 39 assists) and Brandon Thompson (13 goals, 51 assists) all finished ahead of Mitchell in the scoring race.Brad McBride (27 goals, 31 assists) and Darnell Dyck (17 goals, 41 assists) round out the top six mix for the team.Combined, the six have accounted for 65 per cent of the Chiefs offence.And in net, the Bulldogs have a goaltender in Frank Slubowski (2.90 goals against average, .906 save percentage) more than capable of stealing a series. Last season, Slubowski was a nominee for both the most valuable player and rookie of the year awards.The Chiefs will counter with Wyatt Galley, who went 24-17-1, with a 3.52 GAA and a .904 save percentage.

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