For the first time in its existence, the Richmond Sockeyes have won the regular season Tunnel Series trophy, defeating the Ice Hawks 8-2 on Tuesday night for a 4-2 season series victory.
It was a close game mid-way into the second period with the two teams tied 1-1, but then Richmond poured it on and started to find the back of the net.
The Ice Hawks drew first blood on their first shot of the game – Mateo Sjoberg’s 20th of the year. Danylo Bereza sent a thread pass through the neutral zone to Payton Hu, who skated in down the right wing and chipped it over his defender’s stick to Sjoberg who was all alone and lifted it over Thomas Popa’s left shoulder for a 1-0 Delta lead.
Richmond was able to even the score in the second period, with Teo Lin netting one seconds into a power play on a quick pass from below the goal line.
The Sockeyes took a 2-1 lead just under five minutes later on a Daniel Zhou goal far side on Mason Upton.
On a Sockeyes 5-on-3 later in the period, Jonathan Soares took a shot from the point that hit a Hawks skate and went past Upton to give Richmond a 3-1 lead after 40 minutes.
The visiting team would score three more power play goals in the third period, that one from William Huo, Michael McIntyre, and Nicholas Noren, for a 6-1 lead.
Beckett Cross added his fifth goal of the season on a pass from Austin Kofler in the left corner to make it 6-2, but Richmond went right back down and scored to regain their five-goal lead. They added a late one for an 8-2 final.
It’s a quick turnaround for the Ice Hawks as they head to Langley tonight (Wednesday) for a game against the Trappers.
Delta returns home on Tuesday, Jan. 30 for a game against Port Coquitlam. Game time is 7:35 p.m. at the Ladner Leisure Centre.