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Giants edge Cougars in hard-fought battle

Allen Douglas photo

The Prince George Cougars (4-5-1-1) came up just short in a 2-1 setback to the Vancouver Giants (8-3-0-0), on Monday night at the Sandman Centre in Kamloops.

The Giants’ Adam Hall scored the game-winner, midway through the third period, to break a 1-1 tie. Erick Florchuk scored in the first period, as Vancouver led 1-0 through the first and second periods. Trent Miner earned first star honours after turning aside 33 of 34 shots.

Riley Heidt scored the Cougars’ only goal, early in the third period, to tie the game. Taylor Gauthier was solid in net, stopping 27 of 29 shots in a losing effort. Gauthier was named the game’s third star.

“I really liked the way we played for the most part. It was a tight-checking game but we gave away the two points at the end there. We did so many good things but we didn’t stick with it, we turned it over late and that cost us. That’s the disappointing part,” said General Manager & Head Coach Mark Lamb.

The only goal in the first came off the stick of Florchuk. The 20-year-old Giants forward crashed the net and roofed a rebound over Gauthier with just over two minutes left in the opening frame.

It remained 1-0 for the Giants up until the early moments of the third period. Heidt took the puck wide down the left wing, before cutting back behind the net. As he darted behind the goal, he threw the puck back out front which went off the defenceman’s leg and in.

Prince George had a last-ditch effort to tie the game in the dying seconds. With five seconds left, the Giants were called for a penalty and on the ensuing six-on-four face-off, Ethan Samson had his point shot blocked as time expired.

GAME SUMMARY

Scoring

Cougars- Riley Heidt

Giants- Eric Florchuk, Adam Hall

Goaltending

Cougars- Taylor Gauthier, 59:16, 27 saves, 29 shots

Giants- Trent Miner, 60:00, 33 saves, 34 shots

Power-Play

Cougars- 0/5

Giants- 0/4

Shots:

Cougars: 34

Giants: 29

Three Stars: 1) Trent Miner 2) Adam Hall 3) Taylor Gauthier

Game Notes: The Cougars record is now 2-1-0-1 against the Giants in the series. Riley Heidt has four points (1-3-4) on his three-game point streak. With his assist Monday, Hudson Thornton has a point (1-2-3) in all three games he has played this season: all three against Vancouver. Monday marked the tenth time in 11 games the Cougars have been scored on first.

Next Game: Thursday, April 22 versus the Kamloops Blazers (Sandman Centre) at 7 p.m.


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