Ice Hawks look to close gap on Wolf Pack

Delta heads to North Vancouver Saturday with a chance to pull within six points of first place overall

The Delta Ice Hawks have an opportunity to make the chase for top spot overall in the Pacific Junior Hockey League a whole lot more interesting on Saturday night.

The Hawks (18-5-2-2) head to North Vancouver for their final meeting with the league-leading Wolf Pack (24-5-0-0) eight points back in the standings. They also happen to enjoy two games in hand.

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Adding intrigue to the race is the overall standings determine opening round playoff match-ups this season for the top eight teams. 

Right now, Tom Shaw Conference teams hold down the top three spots with the Richmond Sockeyes (16-6-2-1) sitting third overall, while sixth place Grandview is just a single point back of Abbotsford and Langley.

The Ice Hawks made it back-to-back wins with a 5-2 road triumph over Langley on Wednesday after blanking Mission 4-0 24 hours earlier. The results came after North Vancouver saw its 11-game win streak snapped in a 3-2 loss on Wednesday at Aldergrove.

Delta erased a 2-1 deficit with four unanswered goals in the third period at Langley. Alex Suprynowicz launched the comeback with his 25th of the season and then set-up Daniel Rubin for the game winner with 11:06 remaining. Captain Jordan Deyrmenjian and Dario Esposito added insurance goals after Mark Epshtein had opened the scoring in the final minute of the first period.

Jordy Engelson made 26 saves for his 13th win in 19 games.

Jordin Kojima, Epshtein, Suprynowicz and Esposito had the goals against Mission while Thomas Watts needed to make just 12 saves for the shutout.

The game marked the debut of defenceman Jesse Conroy who was acquired over the weekend in trade with Aldergrove. The 18-year-old Tsawwassen native had played in 57 games for the Kodiaks over two seasons.

The Hawks also host Langley on Tuesday at 7:35 p.m.


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