The Selkirk College Saints opened their 2013-14 B.C. Intercollegiate Hockey League season with a bang, scoring early and often in a 7-2 victory over Eastern Washington University at the Castlegar Recreation Complex on Friday.
With over 400 fans in the stands, the team celebrated its 2012-13 BCIHL championship season by lifting its banner to the rafters in front of special guests: Selkirk College President Angus Graeme, Board of Governors Chairman Bruce Morrison and Registrar Cathy Mercer.
Once the puck dropped, it took the Saints just over a minute to open the scoring as a Jackson Garrett pass was converted from the top of the crease by Connor McLaughlin past Eagles starter Jason Greenwell to give the hosts an early lead.
McLaughlin netted his second goal of the period with 5:19 remaining in the frame and helped set up linemate Beau Taylor for Selkirk’s third of the period, but EWU responded with a pair of power-play goals and trailed by a single goal after 20 minutes.
It was all Saints the rest of the way, however, beginning midway through the second when McLaughlin completed his hat trick on a power-play feed from former Trail Smoke Eater and team captain Logan Proulx. Cody Fidgett scored on another man-advantage minutes later and added two more in the third period to complete a hat trick of his own.
James Prigione picked up his first win in net for Selkirk, turning aside 25 shots on the night. Overall, the Saints out-shot their visitors by a 47-27 margin.
“Tonight turned into a bit of a special teams battle and our power-play was up for the challenge,” says Saints head coach Jeff Dubois. “We got five goals and both units had a lot of success moving the puck and generating scoring opportunities.”