The first period began slowly, but as it progressed, the intensity grew between the two teams, who have already played three times this season and have developed a very physical rivalry.
As the pace began to pick up, so did the sharp blow of the referee’s whistle, with penalty minutes wracking up on both ends of the ice.
Usually when penalties are a plenty, goalies are the busiest players on the ice and Friday, that was no exception. Both Ty Gullickson and Jackson Winkler, making his debut for the Flyers in net, were both busy and played phenomenally, both making huge saves to keep the score at 0-0 concluding the first.
The zeroes didn’t last forever, as the Huskies struck first halfway through the second. Robbie Sidhu used his speed to enter the offensive zone, drawing two Flyer defenders towards him. Sidhu made a nice pass to line-mate Cody Hildebrand who was skating in the slot, and wristed the puck low five-hole for a 1-0 Huskies lead.
The second period got better for Fort St. John, as near the conclusion of the middle frame, Cody Hildebrand stationed himself behind the Flyers’ net, finding Sidhu alone in front, and made a nice pass to get the puck to him. Like Robbie does, he made no mistake with the puck that close to a goalie, snapping the puck low-blocker for a 2-0.
The perfect road game for the Huskies didn’t last, as Flyers head coach Ryan Zilla must have fired his players up in the second intermission. The Flyers shifted their play to a whole new gear, while the Huskies were unable match the intensity, as Fairview scored three unanswered goals in the third, completing a 3-2 comeback, and winning their first game at home.
The schedule doesn’t get much easier for the Huskies, as Saturday, they welcome the league’s top, and most offensively dangerous team in the NWJHL, the Grande Prairie JDA Kings.
Saturday’s game begins at 8 p.m. at the North Peace Arena.