Saturday, April 19, 2014

ALUMNI TWEETS



A number of Express alumni went to twitter to send the 2014 BCHL champions congratulations.

Kyle Turrs 05-07.



Carlo Finucci - 05-08. 06 RBC Cup champ, 08 BCHL scoring champion.



Alex Petan - 09-12 - 2012 Coastal Conference MVP.



Dave Simoes - 05-06 - 2006 RBC Cup champ.



Brandon Morley - 2012-13 - University of Alaska



Adam Rossignol - 2013 - Portland Winterhawks WHL



Friday, April 18, 2014

EXPRESS WESTERN CANADA CUP SCHEDULE

Here's a quick glance of the schedule for the Express at the Western Canada Cup.

Sunday April 27 vs. Spruce Grove (AJHL) - 12:00 PM Pacific

Monday April 28 vs. Winnipeg (MJHL) - 5:00 PM Pacific

Wednesday April 30 vs. Yorkton (SJHL) - 5:00 PM Pacific

Thursday May 1 vs. Dauphin (Host) - 5:00 PM Pacfic


MORE EXPRESS CHAMPIONSHIP COVERAGE

Gardner tackles Josh Smith as part of the championship celebration - Photo courtesy of Tri Cities Now.
Here's some additional Express championship coverage for you to enjoy. Some great photos courtesy of the Tri Cites Now.

Here's the link to gallery 1

Here's the link to gallery 2

Here's the link to gallery 3

Global BC interviewed Captain Ryan Rosenthal, defenceman Marc Biega and forward Adam Rockwood.

Click here for Global BC's story on the Express

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

EXPRESS CHAMPIONSHIP MULTIMEDIA


Here's some multimedia from last nights Fred Page Cup championship victory for the Coquitlam Express.

Here's the game highlights. 



During the second intermission I chatted with the Head Coach of the 2006 Express championship team Rick Lanz. 



Here's the celebration at the end of the game filmed by Jorge Parra. 



Here's some additional video including goals courtesy of the Tri City News. 






EXPRESS 2014 FRED PAGE CUP BCHL CHAMPIONS


The Express won their second Fred Page Cup championship in franchise history with a 4-3 win in game 4 of the Fred Page Cup final Tuesday night.

This is the first championship for the franchise based in Coquitlam. They were located in Burnaby when they won their first cup in 2006.

They completed a sweep of the Vernon Vipers thanks to a 4th straight come from behind victory.

Jace Hennig flipped the script for the Express in the first period scoring on a scramble when Austin Smith lost the puck between his pads and the puck found it's way in. Vernon had opened the scoring in each of the previous three games of the series. They opened up a 2-0 lead in each of the first three games of the series. Vernon had a 3-0 lead in game one.

Knowing the cup was in the house, Coquitlam showed no signs of nerves knowing what could be theirs if they came away victorious. They had a number of quality chances in the first period including a breakaway for Corey Mackin, Ryan Rosenthal with a chance off the wing, Cody Boyd from the slot and Canon Pieper in the final 20 seconds. There was no doubt the team was ready to play right from the get go.

Vernon matched the Express energy then started to have the momentum start to swing in their direction. Colton Sparrow 42 seconds into the second period evened the score at one finishing off a set up from Brett Mulcahy.

Canon Pieper restored the Express lead at 7:15 when his shot from the left circle beat Smith on the short side.

Vernon's top line of Mulcahy, Colton Sparrow and Brendan Persley put the team on their back and carried them as the Vipers fought hard to make sure the Express weren't celebrating at the end of the night. Brendan Persley pulled Vernon even again when he snapped a shot past the glove of Gordie Defiel just past the midway mark of the second period.

Persley struck again in the final minute of the second period to give Vernon their lone lead of the night when he scored on a feed from behind the net by Sparrow. The trio of Persley, Mulcahy and Sparrow combined for 7 points in the second period with 3 goals and 4 assists. Persley and Sparrow each registered 3 points in the frame.

The stage was set at the start of the third period for another Express comeback. Their final period has been the best in the 2014 playoffs. Things were no different Tuesday.

Bo Pieper pulled the Express even 1:43 with a quick shot beat Smith up high.

With 6:18 remaining Marc Biega was assessed a hooking penalty giving Vernon what appeared to be a key power play with their BCHL Championship hopes hanging in the balance.

But that penalty also gave the BCHL's most dangerous team shorthanded an opportunity as well.

On this night it was Adam Rockwood delivering the goods for the Express. He took advantage of a Vernon turnover and walked in on a breakaway and scored a goal he will remember for the rest of his life as his deke saw the puck eventually bounce past Smith for what would turn out to be the Fred Page Cup winning goal. Rockwood who is a pass first player which is reflected in his goals to assists ratio had just one goal in the playoffs entering the final. The Coquitlam native had three big ones in the series scoring the tying and overtime winning goal in game 2, and the Fred Page Cup winner.

It's fitting that the cup winner would come for this team while a man down. Combining the regular season (19) and playoffs (6) the Express scored 25 shorthanded goals.

The Express finished the series outscoring Vernon 10-1 in the third period and overtime. And all 10 goals came unanswered.

Captain Ryan Rosenthal had a chance to ice it with less three minutes left but was denied on a breakaway.

Then in the dying seconds Vernon had one last close call. Colton Sparrow found himself wide open alone in front of the net where he was robbed by Gordie Defiel, then in one last desperate attempt to tie the game the puck was gloved into the net. Credit to the referee who was in good position to see the play and wave the goal off immediately with 0.4 seconds left on the clock. That meant one final drop of the puck outside the Express zone and a drop of the puck to officially crown the Coquitlam Express 2013-14 Fred Page cup champions.

This team had the belief inside the room led by Head Coach Barry Wolff and his players that they had a good team that gelled into a unit that eliminated Prince George, Langley, Victoria in the semi final round robin and Vernon to earn the title of champions.

The Express now will move on to the Western Canada Cup where they will be joined by the AJHL Champion Spruce Grove Saints, the Winnipeg Blues MJHL champions, and Dauphin Kings WCC hosts to play for two spots in the RBC Cup in Vernon in May. The Yorkton Terriers will look to round out the field for the WCC tonight as they lead the Melville Millionaires 3-0 in the SJHL final.

Coquitlam will begin the WCC on Sunday April 27th when they will play Spruce Grove at 12pm Pacific time.

Click here for full WCC schedule







Monday, April 14, 2014

EXPRESS LEAD 3-0 IN CUP FINAL THANKS TO ANOTHER COMEBACK AND OT DRAMATICS



The Coquitlam Express did it again, they fell behind for the third straight game and found a way to battle back. They defeated the Vernon Vipers 3-2 in overtime and have a 3-0 strangle hold on the BCHL Championship series.

Ryan Rosenthal who has been scoring timely goals all playoffs long, may have gotten his two biggest goals thus far in the playoffs. He tied it with 1:11 to go and was the overtime hero at 12:16.

As has been the story all series long the Express dug themselves into an early hole. Vernon came out strong for a third straight game in the series. They had a 6-1 advantage in shots when Dylan Chanter at the side of the Express net scored to open the scoring for Vernon for a third straight game in this series.

Vernon kept up the pressure looking to build on their lead but were turned aside by Defiel who only let Vernon get one in the opening 20 minutes. Defiel was peppered with 17 shots in that first period.

The Vipers built on their lead on a second period power play to open the frame when Liam Coughlin scored on a feed from Michael McNicholas at 1:14. Vernon led 3-0 in the first period of game 1. And have had 2-0 leads in both games 2 and 3.

Vernon kept their foot on the gas pedal in the second period as they looked to have a full 60 minute effort and not allow the Express to get back into the game. There were times in the first half of this game where the Vipers were in complete control of the contest.

Brendan Lamont midway through the second period scored his second of the playoffs for the Express as he buried the rebound of a Zach Hodder point shot that was kicked out by Austin Smith.

Another solid 20 from Vernon saw them with a 1 goal lead and a 28-12 advantage in shots.

But in case you didn't know, you can't allow this Express team to hang around in the third period.

The final frame has been the best for the Express in the playoffs. And the third saw the game start to turn in the Express favor. They didn't have an all out push and were dominating the period. But they were getting their shots and were hoping one would go in.

Well, one did and no surprise it was Ryan Rosenthal. He came down the right wing and snapped a shot from the boards and beat Austin Smith to the far side with just 1:11 remaining. And out of the blue the game was tied at 2.

That goal all of a sudden gave the Express an incredible boost of energy. They were all over Vernon in the final minute of regulation and had a number of great chances to win it before overtime. Rosenthal rang a shot off the post. Marc Biega and Adam Rockwood also had glorious chances before regulation expired.

In the post-season the Express have now outscored their opposition 27-12. And 6-2 so far in this series.

Regulation ended, and the Express momentum carried over from the third period with them.

They came out in overtime with good shifts in the Vipers zone throwing pucks at the net. Adam Rockwood came close to winning it for a second straight game as he was set up in front of the net but the puck found a way to go out of play.

Then came Rosenthal time, he scored on a set up from Corey Mackin getting it past the glove of Austin Smith for his second of the game to give the Express the dramatic 3-2 win and 3-0 lead in the Fred Page Cup final.

Gordie Defiel turned aside 35 of 37 Vernon shots in the Express crease. And like he's done in the playoffs, he's shut the door at key times the longer the games go on.

What started as a 28-12 advantage in shots for Vernon through two periods. It was reduced to just a 37-36 advantage by the time this one was said and done.

Entering game 4 tomorrow, the big question is how does Vernon respond? They've jumped out to great starts in each of the three games in this series and have nothing to show for it. They know no matter what happens in this series they will still have some hockey left as hosts of the RBC Cup in Vernon in May. A loss of that magnitude might have a real deflating effect. But the Express can't let those thoughts creep into their heads. They still have some work to do if they want to finish the job the right way.

Game 4 is Tuesday night with the Express looking to claim their second Fred Page Cup championship in franchise history.

BO PIEPER BCHL PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Coquitlam Express forward Bo Pieper has been named the BCHL Player of the Week for the week ending April 13, the league announced Monday.

Pieper exploded for four huge goals, including the game-winner, in Game 1 of the Fred Page Cup Finals. Pieper's offence helped the Express rally from a three-goal deficit to win the game 6-4.

The 5-foot-11, 180-pound native of Roseville, Minn. was named the game's 1st Star. He now has 10 goals and five assists for the Express in 17 playoff games.

Honourable mentions this week:

Coquitlam Express F Adam Rockwood: 2G, 1A, OT GWG, 1st Star

Coquitlam Express D Zach Hodder: 3A, 2nd Star

Vernon Vipers F Dexter Dancs: 2G, 1A, 2nd Star