The Clan are on their way to the BCIHL finals.
SFU wiped away what can only be described as a disappointing regular season — where they scored less than 30 points and placed outside of the top two for the first time since the 2007/08 season — by sweeping the Trinity Western (TWU) Spartans in the first round of the BCIHL playoffs.
Saturday night, the Clan returned home to the Bill Copeland to play game two after defeating the first-placed Spartans 3–2 the night before.
At only 1:47 in, Trinity Western put in the first goal of the night. Just over six minutes later Spartan forward PJ Buys, who was third in regular season points, made the lead 2–0 on the powerplay. It looked as if it may just have been TWU’s night — payback for the loss at home.
However, it didn’t take long for SFU to answer with one of their own, as forward Jono Ceci notched his second of the playoffs to put the Clan up on the scoreboard.
There would be no more scoring in the first period, but less than a minute into the second, SFU forward Trent Murdoch tied up the game.
TWU took back the lead five minutes later, but Murdoch wasn’t satisfied with one game-tying goal, so he put another in the back of the net. 3–3.
Trinity Western decided to continue this game of back-and-forth goals, and once again took the lead off of a Ryan Bakken goal, and the team went into the second intermission ahead.
Adam Callegari, who scored two the night before for SFU, scored his third of the playoffs to tie the game for the final time. Instead of following the score-and-be-scored-on routine of the the second period, forward Jeff Mysiorek gave the Clan their first lead of the game — and what would turn out to be the game-winning goal.
Nick Sandor, who led SFU in scoring in the regular season, nabbed the sixth goal just to put the cherry on top. Although there were still 10 minutes left, the goal seemed to kill any chance of the Spartans coming back, or even scoring a goal. The Clan won 6–4.
Notably, SFU shut down BCIHL leading goalscorer Cody Fidgett — who had 25 goals in the regular season for TWU (seven more than second place) — holding him to a single point and no goals.
The trip to championship marks a return to form for the Clan. Having competed every year since the event’s creation, the team lost their chance to compete for the first time last year; they were upset in the first round by TWU, who were then the underdogs at third-place. SFU is currently tied for most BCIHL Championship titles, having won the playoff tournament three times.
The Clan will travel to Castlegar, BC this weekend to face their BCIHL finals opponents Selkirk College, who are the defending BCIHL champions — having not only won last season, but also the season before. SFU narrowly edged Selkirk College in the season series, going 3–2, winning the deciding game in a shootout. However, Selkirk College had previously defeated SFU in the BCIHL finals in 2012, sweeping the Clan.
Selkirk hosts the championship round, as they are the higher seed — second to SFU’s fourth place. Games ones and two will be played Friday and Saturday night at 7 p.m. In the case of a tie, game three will be held Sunday night.
Playoff Round 1, Game 2
TWU Jacob Mills (1) (Wheeler) 18:23
TWU (PPG) PJ Buys (1) (Fidgett, Schmitt) 12:11
SFU (PPG) Jono Ceci (2) (Ball, N Sandor) 9:46
SFU Trent Murdoch (1) (Berry-Lamontagna) 19:03
TWU Blair Murphy (1) (unassisted) 14:52
SFU (PPG) Trent Murdoch (2) (unassisted) 11:17
TWU Ryan Bakken (1) (Wur, Gordon) 7:18
SFU Adam Callegari (3) (Murdoch) 14:59
SFU Jeff Mysiorek (1) (Mah) 13:45
SFU Nick Sandor (1) (Ceci) 10:01
Jordan Liem (SFU): 16 Saves/ 20 Shots .800 SV%
Silas Matthys (TWU): 27 Saves/ 33 Shots .818 SV%
1st: SFU #23, Trent Murdoch 2G, 1A
2nd: SFU #36, Adam Callegari 1G, 0A
3rd: SFU #33, Jesse Williamson 0G, 0A