Hawks Winter Classic Recap

The Ice Hawks went 2-0 in their Winter Classic games this season – defeating both the Port Coquitlam Trailblazers and Ridge Meadows Flames in the first two days of the annual showcase at Minoru Arena.

Delta faced the Trailblazers on Thursday afternoon and started with a quiet first period with just one goal scored by Michele Romeo. But in the second, the Hawks let loose, scoring seven goals (four of which came on the power play), eventually winning 10-2 over the newest PJHL team by adding two more in the third period.

Yuji Akimoto scored two in the game, but overall, the scoring was spread around throughout the lineup, with nine different Hawks netting goals in the win to open the Hawks’ games in Richmond.

Goaltender Jacob Zillich had to face just 13 shots in the game, as the Hawks’ defence completely shut down the chances for PoCo.

On Friday, the Hawks and Ridge Meadows Flames were the marquee matchup of the night in the 7pm slot. The last time the two teams had played, Ridge handed the Hawks their first home loss of the season. While not in Ridge Meadows, Delta was able to return the favour as the visiting team, taking down the Harold Brittain Conference leaders 4-3.

After a scoreless first frame, the Hawks jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead to start the second, scoring three in a span of 2:12 early on from Akimoto, Aiden McGregor-Bennett, and Mateo Sjoberg. The Flames got on the board in the period, making it 3-1 through 40 minutes.

Ridge crept back within one, scoring first in the final frame to make it 3-2, but Conner Merriman had a seeing-eye shot later in the period that made it past Matthew Candusso, who had come in following the Hawks’ three-goal burst in the middle period and had shut Delta down until that point. Merriman’s goal was the eventual winner, as the Flames got one more on the board, but that’s as close as they could get, with Remy Quintoro shutting down Ridge’s offence, stopping 33 of 36 chances.

Delta’s next game comes in the new year, January 2 at the Ladner Leisure Centre, against the Grandview Steelers.