The Ice Hawks opened the annual Winter Classic weekend with a bang, winning the first game 6-1 over the Surrey Knights at Minoru Arenas.
After a quiet first two periods, the Hawks broke the scoring drought on the power play with literally one second remaining on the clock, with Brayden Sinclair picking up a loose rebound out front to put the Hawks up 1-0 going into the final period.
It was a whole other story in the third period, with six goals scored total, five of which belonged to the Ice Hawks. Carson Merriman did not waste any time, scoring 44 seconds into the period, weaving his way through multiple Knights defenders and dekeing out Maddox Osaka.
His brother Conner got a goal of his own not too long after that, powering up the ice and through his defender before firing a shot high over Osaka’s shoulder.
Hawks AP Jean-Loup Leonardon got his first PJHL goal and one of the Hawks’ top point-scorers Payton Hu added his eighteenth to really put the game out of reach.
Conner Merriman added another power play goal at about the 14-minute mark. He and Carson skated down from the blue line together, and Carson passed to Conner for a quick shot, resulting in the Delta’s sixth goal of the game.
Surrey did get one goal on the board late in the game, breaking the shutout, but Zach Shaughnessy stopped every other shot he saw to help lead the Hawks to their twenty-fifth win of the season.