Brendan O’Grady led the Langley Trappers, scoring a hat trick on the way to a 7-4 win over the Aldergrove Kodiaks on Saturday, Feb. 12 to clinch the 2021-2022 Harold Brittain conference and become Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL) regular season champions for the first time in franchise history.
Trappers head coach and general manager Brad Bakken said there was “a lot of scoreboard watching” leading up to the weekend game.
“It’s been a fun ride for the guys,” Bakken said .
“They’ve been dialed in.”
With three-and-a-half minutes to play in the third period, during a timeout called by the Kodiaks, Bakken told his players results from other games that evening were in, and they showed the Trappers could wrap up their first league championship there and then.
“They took it pretty seriously,” Bakken told the Langley Advance Times.
And with our win tonight in Aldergrove, the Langley Trappers are your 2021-2022 Harold Brittain conference, and @ThePJHL Regular Season Champions for the first time in franchise history! pic.twitter.com/nuqS8wI39N
— Langley Trappers (@LangleyTrappers) February 13, 2022
Trappers Hayden Yahn scored late in the first with an assist by Ryan Tong and Evan Clare.
Then, Kodiaks Kale Taylor tied it 1-1 early in the 2nd, assisted by Lewis Nikkel.
Trappers responded with three goals by Brendan O’Grady, Benjamin Weys (with an assist by O’Grady and Yahn), and Arthony Bosnjak (with Weys and Yahn).
Parker Kubilius narrowed the Trappers lead in the opening seconds of the third on a power play goal with Callum MacDonald and Carson Preston assisting.
O’Grady responded for Langley, notching the game-winning goal with an assist by Brendan Aleong
Carson Preston scored the next two goals for Kodiaks, the first assisted by Taylor Chiu and Nikkel, the second on a power play with Parker Kubilius and Kale Taylor.
Then, Jamie Hylands scored the insurance goal and O’Grady added a seventh, both empty net goals for the Trappers.
O’Grady, Preston and Yahn were first, second and third stars of the game.
READ ALSO: Aldergrove Kodiaks face tough schedule as they battle for playoff spot
On Sunday, Feb. 13, Bakken opted to keep his key players off the ice to avoid pointless pre-playoff injuries during the last regular season game against the Delta Ice Hawks, who blanked the Trappers 7-0.
Ice Hawks goalie Justin Wagner posted a shutout.
Meanwhile, the Kodiaks kept their playoff hopes alive with with 3-1 decision over the Outlaws at Mission City Leisure Centre on Sunday.
Jayden Martin had the lone goal for Mission, with an assist by Chase Newman and Brayden Stewart, in the first period.
Taylor Chiu replied for Aldergrove off an assist by Kale Taylor and Carson Preston.
After a scoreless second period, Trevor Baron scored twice in a row, getting the winning goal with an assist from Hunter Brown and Callum MacDonald early in the third, then the insurance marker, with assists by Taylor Chiu and Parker Kubilius.
PJHL playoffs are set to start Feb. 15 with the top four teams in the Tom Shaw and Harold Brittain conferences playing best of seven series leading up to the Storehouse Cup in March.
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