Thursday, November 26, 2015


Express forwards Captain Jackson Cressey and Blake Hayward have been invited to selection camp for Team Canada West for the upcoming World Junior A Challenge.

Selection camp will take place from December 5-8 in Leduc, Alberta. A total of 60 players have been invited and they will play four intrasquad games.

Click here for full selection camp roster

Click here for BCHL release

Jackson Cressey is in his third full season in the BCHL. Prior to the 2015-16 season he was named the Express captain. He's had a breakout season thus far with 11 goals and 27 points through 20 games this season. In 138 career BCHL games the West Vancouver native has 31 goals and 81 points.

Earlier this season Cressey accepted a scholarship to Princeton University for the fall of 2016. Cressey was a member of the Express 2014 Fred Page Cup championship team.

Blake Hayward is in his first full season in the BCHL. He has 2 goals and 5 points in 24 games this season. One of his goals this season is a game winning goal. In 29 career games with the Express Hayward has 5 career points.

This years World Junior A challenge will take place from December 13-18 in Cobourg and Whitby Ontario.

Express Head Coach and GM Barry Wolff will serve as an assistant coach for Team Canada West. This will be his second stint coaching at the World Junior A challenge. He also served as an assistant at the 2010 event in Penticton.

The last time the Express were represented at the World Juinor A Challenge was 2012 when Alexander Kerfoot, Zach Pryzbek and Brandon Morley dressed for Team Canada West.

Congratulations Jackson and Blake. And best of luck in Leduc.

Saturday, November 21, 2015


Penticton had their 23 game winning streak come to an end last night in Langley Friday. Saturday, the Vees took their frustrations out on the Express like a nest of angry bees. 

The 38 minutes between the opening minute of the game and the final minute of the second period Penticton put on quite a display en route to a 8-2 win over the Express. Click here for boxscore

Friday night vs. Wenatchee Austin McIlMurray opened the scoring for the Express 1:03 into the first period. Saturday he pretty much matched that by opening the scoring at 1:04 of the first period.

Then the Vees began to take control of the game.  Their speed and skill was on display in full force. 

Penticton would go on to score the next 8 goals in the game. 

Tyson Jost and Dante Fabbro who are expected to be first round picks in this coming NHL draft looked every bit the reason why they get the attention they do.

Fabbro showed a great release and the ability to jump into the play on his two first period goals. Jost showed his great hands in tight for his lone goal of the night tucking the puck past Tyger Howat. He was dangerous almost every single shift he was on the ice for the Vees and far away the best player on the ice. Jost finished with 5 points with one goal and four assists. 

In addiiton to the two goals from Fabbro and the single from Brodzinski, Demico Hannoun also scored in the first period with a nice toe drag then unleashing a wrist shot while falling to the ice. 

At one point in the first period the Express had a 5-2 advantage in shots. By the end of the first period the shots were 19-8 Penticton who took a 5-1 lead to the second period. 

As good as the Vees looked in the first, Penticton looked even better in the second period. Scott Conway and Chris Gerrie scored 33 seconds apart to make it 7-1 Vees. That meant the end of the night for Tyger Howat after allowing 7 goals on 24 shots. 

Lawson Fenton came in to finish the game. He allowed the 8th Vees goal on the 2nd of the night for Easton Brodzinski.

But if you're looking for any positives for the Express in this game it's how Fenton shut the door the rest of the way. Fenton finished with 19 saves on 20 Vees shots. 

At the other end Anthony Brodeur knew what his father Martin went through during his heyday with the Devils seeing very little rubber. The Express didn't register their first shot of the second period until the 10:27 mark off the stick of Charlie Barrow. 

I had tracked the shots on goal from the 3:30 mark of the first period to the 19 minute mark of the second period and I had the Vees with 35-4 run of shots. 

Taylor Green rounded out the scoring burying his own rebound for a power play goal and his first of the season in the final minute of the second period. 

Sure this game didn't go the Express way, but there's still plenty of good things for the Express going forward. When you look at the schedule as a whole this week, they had three tough games. And they came away with 3 out of a possible 6 points. And they were one shot away from getting 4 points this week. 

That's the positive to take out of this week. They can only build on it going forward starting next Friday vs. Prince George. 

Friday, November 20, 2015


Blake Hayward celebrates his 1st period goal - Photo courtesy of Damon James
On the first game of parents weekend for the Express, the players put on a good show for the moms and dads in attendance taking care of Wenatchee 4-1 in Coquitlam. Click here for boxscore

Lawson Fenton making his first start in two weeks had one of his best outings of the season turning aside 37 of 38 Wild shots.

Coming a solid effort Wednesday night in Penticton, the Express were looking to build off that outing despite the 1-0 2OT setback.

Right from the start the Express showed they were ready to play.

The top line of Jackson Cressey, Colton Kerfoot and Austin McIlMurray were buzzing in the Wild end. It didn't take long for them to break through with McIlMurray sliding the puck under Chase Perry for a 1-0 Express lead just 1:03 into the game.

Defenceman Taylor Green - Photo courtesy of Damon James
That goal put the game in motion and both teams were skating at a fantastic pace providing great entertainment for those in attendance.

Midway through the first period the Express added to their lead.

Jake Brien pinched in from the right point and got down the wall then fired the puck at the net and Blake Hayward found a loose puck in the crease and poked it home for a 2-0 Express lead.

Friday's game may have been Brien's best in the BCHL to date. He moved the puck confidently and was very active from the backend for the Express. He was also very rock solid in his own end of the rink. He also made sure to get at least one of his trademark hits on the Wild coming down the wing and connecting on the hit at the Express blueline.

Up 2-0 late in the first period the Wild pressed looking for a goal to get within at least one after 20 minutes. Matt Baker was thwarted by Fenton as the puck came to him alone in front of the Express net.

Lawson Fenton earned 1st star honours - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Fenton came up with a number of key saves late in the first period to preserve the Express lead.

In the second period the quality of saves from Fenton only improved.

Fenton's best save of the night came off Mike Coyne with Fenton firing out his glove to rob Coyne who pounced on the rebound of a Bryan Yoon point shot.

That was followed in quick succession off a reach back save with his stick off Tyler Rockwell. Then another save off Joe Drabin who found himself alone in front on a Wild power play.

Coquitlam extended their lead in the second period on the power play with Taylor Green sliding the puck across to Kerfoot who went to his backhand then slid the puck under Chase Perry for Kerfoot's Express leading 12th goal of the season.

Wenatchee finally got a puck past Fenton early in the third period. Logan Milliken from the slot snapped a shot low past the glove for Fenton just shy of the three minute mark.

That goal really sparked a Wenatchee push. But each time they were turned back from the rock solid play from Fenton.

Owen Stout - Photo courtesy of Damon James
The Express as a team bent in the third period as Wenatchee fired 16  shots but they never broke. They were content to relieve the Wild pressure immediately by icing the puck repeatedly. But they were never hanging on for dear life in the third period. The shots finished 38-24 in favour of the Wild. But that was more of a product of the Express sitting back and protecting their lead.

The penalty killing unit was stellar for the Express. They capped off a great night by going a perfect 6 for 6 by shutting down the Wild one final time in the third period with Owen Stout in the box shortly after the Wild got on the board.

Then Jarrell Pinchuk iced the game with just under 5 minutes to go snapping a shot past Chase Perry for his 3rd goal of the season and second against Wenatchee this season.

Colton Kerfoot picked up an assist on the goal and finished with three points with 1 goal and 2 assists. He now has 32 points on the season in 24 games which surpasses his rookie season total of 31 points in 40 games.

Jackson Cressey - Photo courtesy of Damon James
In their first two games against two of the top teams in the BCHL, the Express have been able to pick up 3 out of a possible 4 points. They're now 3-0-0-1 in their last four games. They've played two of their best games of the season to date. They've shown how they can compete against the best of the BCHL when they execute a game plan and truly play as a team.

Up next the Express will get another crack at the Penticton Vees. But the Express won't have a chance to snap the Vees streak as their run of 23 straight games came to an end with a 4-2 loss in Langley Friday.

Thursday, November 19, 2015


Here's the highlights of the Express 4-3 overtime win last Friday vs. Victoria.

Highlights courtesy of Jorge Parra and Underdog Productions.


For the Express heading up to Penticton if you were to list a number of items for the Express to tick off to snap the Vees 22 game winning streak they would be...

- Top notch goaltending - check
- Smart decisions with the puck - check
- Disciplined play - check
- Be ready to go for 60 minutes and possibly more - check

The Express did all those things and played their best game of the season in Penticton Wednesday but lost 1-0 in double overtime. Click here for boxscore

Wednesday's game may have been the game of the season in the BCHL this year. Tyler Howat for the Express and Anthony Brodeur for the Vees were stellar in their respective creases. 

Head Coach Barry Wolff knew entering this week that his team had three big tests with two games vs.  Penticton and one vs. Wenatchee. He pushed his troops hard at practice to be ready to go. And in their first test they rewarded their head coach with a strong game. 

The Express caught a break right from the start with Colton Poolman of the Vees being called for delay of game after he failed to leave the ice on time following the conclusion of warm up. 

That allowed the Express to settle in the game and try and put the Vees in an early hole. The Express weren't able to convert on the power play. Minutes later the Express were on the power play a second time. This time around they were a little more threatening around the Vees net but weren't able to get a puck past Brodeur. 

The Express started the game by outshooting the Vees 11-0. 

One of the Vees best chances in the first period came off the stick of Demico Hannoun who had a shorthanded breakaway and couldn't beat Howat trying to go to the backhand. (Full disclosure here) It was hard to tell from my broadcast position so far away if Howat got a piece to make a save or Hannoun missed the net. 

Scott Conway came close to opening the scoring in the first period ringing a shot off the crossbar from the left circle. Then the best chance for either team in the first period came off the stick of Tyson Jost, he had the puck at the side of a wide open Express net and I still don't know how he was unable to convert the tap in and it was scoreless after one period. 

The bounces continued to go Howat's way in the second period when Hannoun rang a shot off the post from the right wing. Owen Sillenger also ripped a shot off the red metal from the left wing. 

The Express had another solid period outshooting the Vees 13-10 and had a 27-18 advantage in shots through 40 minutes. 

The Vees really began to press in the third period looking to break the deadlock. But Howat only raised his game to match the Vees level. 

Tyson Jost had three good chances in regulation play to score. Aside from the tap in he missed, he was robbed by Howat on the power play after unleashing a one timer from the right circle only to be turned away by the black and red leather glove of Howat. Jost also had a good chance to score in the final two minutes of the third period as he used his speed to attack the Express defence and take the puck to the net. 

Blake Hayward watched for an anxious two minutes in the third period sitting on the penalty box after a solid play on the back check. Hayward came out of the box and joined Colton Kerfoot to set up a two on one. Kerfoot slid the puck across the Hayward who couldn't finish the chance as Brodeur reached back to keep the puck out. 

The Express executed their game plan to a "T" for a full 60 minutes but not a single goal was scored. So for just the second time in franchise history the Express had played 60 minutes of scoreless hockey. The only other occasion was the season opener for the Express at the first ever BCHL showcase where Brady Shaw gave the Express a 1-0 OT win over Victoria on September 12, 2013. 

But this game was historic for the Express being the first game to be scoreless going into 3 on 3 overtime after nothing was decided of 5 minutes of 4 on 4. 

After 65 minutes of scoreless hockey, it seemed like the game ended in a blink of an eye in 3 on 3. The Vees won the opening draw and Scott Conway on the opening possession attacked Jackson Cressey one on one and beat him then just trickled a shot through Howat for a heart breaking ending for the Express and extending the Vees winning streak to 23 just 16 seconds into double overtime. 

The loss for the Express was disappointing. But they showed what they can do when they're on their game. Play smart and be able to compete with the best team in the country. The Express will have another crack at the Vees Saturday night in Coquitlam. Before that they will host the Wenatchee Wild Friday.

Friday, November 13, 2015


Taylor Green takes part in pre-game veterans night ceremony - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Luca Leone scored the double overtime winner to give the Express their second overtime win over the Victoria Grizzlies this season.

This time the result was 4-3 in favour of the Express. Click here for boxscore

Many of the same contributors for the Express in their win Wednesday at Langley also chipped in Friday night.

Leone taps in OT winner - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Alex Ambrosio picked up where he left off Wednesday where he scored into an empty net to seal the win opened the scoring Friday. His linemates Jonathan Irving and Keegan Jones worked to get the puck out of the defensive zone. Then Jones broke away with Ambrosia on a two on one and Jones laid a perfect pass across to Ambrosio who finished off his third of the season on the backhand.

That goal gave the Express some momentum which led to at least three good scoring chances only to be turned away by Matthew Galajda who kept the Express lead at just one.

Former Express Dante Hahn had a hand in pulling the Grizzlies even late in the first period when he made a pass out from behind the Express net to find Brayden Gelsinger who slid a shot under Howat to tie the game at one after the first period.

McIlMurray had two assists - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Colton Kerfoot tied the game at four for the Express Wednesday in Langley. Friday, he gave the Express a 2-1 lead when he took the puck to the net from the right wing side flipping the puck over the glove of Galajda. That made up for a breakaway opportunity Kerfoot missed earlier in the period when he again tried to lift the puck over the glove of the Victoria goaltender.

1:27 later the Express added to their lead with Jack Surowiec scoring for a second straight game ripping home a wrist shot from the slot. Linemates Kerfoot and Austin McIlmurray picked up the helpers. McIlMurray finished with two assists.

Like the first period, Victoria struck late in the second period. The puck came free to Nick Guiney and from the circle he beat Howat with a shot top shelf.

Eric Udahl throws a hit - Photo courtesy of Damon James
The Grizzlies caught a break in the third period to pull even. Keyvan Mokhtari from the corner threw the puck in front and it bounced in off Cody Van Lierop to tie the score at three.

Then the goaltenders took over to send the game to overtime. Howat shut the door as the Grizzlies had an edge in play after pulling even.

At the other end Galajda shut the Express down when tested with 13 third period shots sent his way.

So for the second straight meeting between the teams it went past 60 minutes. Charlie Barrow was the overtime hero for the Express in Victoria on October 1st.

Nothing was settled in the first overtime of 5 minutes 4 on 4.

The most important lesson for all players in 3 on 3 is puck management.

The Express capitalized on a Grizzlies mistake to set up the winner. A Victoria defenceman swept the puck around behind his own net but didn't have a partner back to support him. Luca Leone got on his horse and raced the puck to set up Kerfoot alone in front of the Victoria net, Kerfoot was patient and waited for Leone to go to the net and Kerfoot set up Leone for a tap in to give the Express the 4-3 victory. The loss snapped Victoria's winning streak at 5 games.

Tyger Howat made 34 saves - Photo courtesy of Damon James
Leone scored his second goal in as many games. Kerfoot finished with 1 goal and 2 assists while on his way to first star honors.

It was also a pretty clean game with only one power play in the game going to Victoria in the second period.

Tyger Howat finished with 34 saves for his 5th win of the season.

The two wins for the Express will go a long way to help prepare for a big test next week for a pair of games with Penticton and a visit from Wenatchee. Friday the Vees extended their winning streak to 21 straight games with a win in West Kelowna. 

Thursday, November 12, 2015


For immediate release:

 The Coquitlam Express of the BCHL would like to congratulate players Jack Surowiec and Charlie Barrow both headed to Holy Cross and Austin McILMurray to Sacred Heart on officially signing their national letter of intent.

Surowiec, Barrrow and McILMurrary are all in their first seasons with the Express.

Surowiec (96), from Louisville Kentucky has two goals and six points in 21 games this season. He's been a valuable player for the Express in various roles this season. He's been a key penalty killer, won important defensive draws. And most recently he's centered the top line in the absence of captain Jackson Cressey.

Barrow (96), from Belmont Massachusetts has four goals and ten points in 21 games this season. Two of his four goals have been overtime winners this season. He's added an element of speed and puck moving ability for the Express from the blueline.

McILMurray (96), from Coral Springs Florida is third on the Express in scoring with eight goals and 19 points in 20 games. Two of his goals have been game winning goals. He's spent the entire season playing on the Express top line mostly with Colton Kerfoot and Jackson Cressey.

All 3 players will be going to school in the fall of 2016.

All well deserved and we are proud to have them as members of the Express Junior Hockey Team.

Any questions please contact Express Head Coach/General Manager Barry Wolff.