Conner Merriman scored his 11th and 12th goals of the season on Tuesday night, contributing to the Hawks’ 10-5 win over the Ridge Meadows Flames.
For the fourth game in a row, the Ice Hawks scored double-digit goals in a convincing 10-5 win over the Ridge Meadows Flames Tuesday night.
A timely save by Merik Erickson on a Flames power play shifted the momentum fully in the Ice Hawks’ favour, as Delta scored six goals after that point to take the win.
It was a back and forth first period, with five goals scored in the frame. Payton Hu scored his seventh of the season by taking a pass from Colin Jang and scoring high-glove on Cam Connolly while practically standing on the goal line.
Ridge Meadows took the lead on two goals scored a minute and a half apart. Brendan Chabot was able to beat Erickson with a backhander that may have bounced off an Ice Hawks defenseman out front to tie the game.
The visiting team took the lead after stealing the puck in the Delta zone, and Samuel Allen wristed one quickly into the top left corner.
The Ice Hawks again evened the game just one minute after that, though, with Yuji Akimoto firing the puck into the Ridge zone. Following the puck in, Brayden Sinclair was able to pick it up off the back boards and slide it behind Connolly for his tenth of the season.
Conner Merriman sent Delta to the dressing rooms with a lead though, with his eleventh goal of the season. The Hawks won the face-off in the Flames’ end with 32 seconds left in the period and a couple passes sent the puck to Merriman out front, who sent a laser of a wrist shot into the back of the net to make it 3-2.
Less than two minutes into the second period, the game was tied again. Theo Kochan walked in and fired high on Erickson to even the score.
But again, the Hawks went into the intermission leading on the scoreboard, and a big reason for that is Erickson making a huge save while the Hawks were on the penalty kill. Ridge Meadows had cycled the puck down low to an open player out front who was also facing a yawning cage. But Erickson flew across, closing the gap, and making a diving save to keep the score the same.
The Hawks took advantage of a power play opportunity to regain the lead, with Kyle Robinson, Alex Lucchesi, and Henry Smith connecting on a lateral passing play for the go-ahead goal, with Smith the one finishing it off to make it 4-3 after 40.
Early in the third, Talon Duff threw the puck towards the low slot and it went in off the skate of his teammate Cameron Nikaniuk, tying the game for the fourth time.
The fourth and final time, though, as the Hawks went on to score six goals in the third period to seal the win. It all started with a power play goal from Sinclair, his second of the game, giving the Hawks the 5-4 lead.
Sinclair wasn’t done on the scoresheet, adding an assist on the sixth goal of the game. He won a puck battle along the boards near the Ridge blue line. He skated in down the right wing and backhanded a pass cross-slot to Carson Merriman, who easily tapped it home for his eleventh on the season.
Ryan Bal had his second goal of the season come on the power play a couple minutes later, as he took a few strides in towards the goal and went near-side to make it 7-4 Delta.
A misplay led the Ice Hawks’ next goal, after Henry Smith was stopped by Connolly. The deflected puck went off the glass in behind the net and back out front. A Ridge defenseman attempted to bat the puck away with his hand, but instead put it into the net, counting as Smith’s second goal of the game.
Conner Merriman added his second of the game after picking off the puck in the neutral zone. He went in 3-on-1 with Payton Hu and Kyle Robinson. Merriman went over to Robinson, who returned the puck quickly to Merriman to finish off the tic-tac-toe play.
Towards the end of the game, Ridge Meadows had a brief power play, as they won the first face-off of the man-advantage and Jordan Kujala potted the Flames’ fifth goal of the night, but it was too little, too late.
With just seconds left in the game and down a man, Sinclair sent Aiden McGregor-Bennett on a breakaway and he scored short-handed on the far-side to put the Hawks into double digits.