In a battle between worst and first in the BCHL’s Coastal Conference, it was the last-place Langley Rivermen who prevailed 4-1 over the playoff-bound Surrey Eagles.
The loss was the first in regulation in the past 17 games for the Eagles.
The two junior A hockey rivals squared off on Wednesday night at the South Surrey Arena and after exchanging first period goals — Robert Lindores for the home side and Darnell Dyck for the Langley visitors — the Rivermen took control with three goals in the middle stanza.
Jackson Playfair and Mario Puskarich scored 38 seconds apart and Dyck added his second of the night late in the frame.
Playfair’s goal came on a perfectly executed 2-on-1 break with Austin Plevy, and Puskarich scored his team-leading 24th on the very next shift, taking a pass from Evan Campbell and slipping it through goalie Connor Barrie’s legs.
Dyck’s second of the night came on a redirect in the slot off a wrist shot from Mike Tebbutt.
His first goal came after Peter McMullen stole the puck and feathered a beautiful pass to Dyck who shot it up high and over Barrie to tie the game.
And that would be more than enough offence as James Barr, the game’s first star, stopped 38 shots, including 19 in the third period.
With the win, Langley pulled out of the Coastal Conference basement and into a tie for seventh with the Victoria Grizzlies. Both teams have 39 points although the Rivermen have played three fewer games.
Surrey leads the conference — and is second overall — with 73 points.
The Rivermen will look to string together a winning streak as they play three times this weekend.
On Friday (Feb. 24) they are in Victoria and on Saturday, it is a visit to Cowichan Valley.
They wrap up the weekend with a Sunday matinee at the Langley Events Centre against the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.