By: Michael Lenko, Peak Associate
Patrick Zubick thwarted his former team, the Selkirk Saints, for the second time this season to lead the Clan to a narrow 2–1 victory at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre. The win was SFU Hockey’s sixth in a row, which has allowed the team to solidify its playoff positioning with just over a month left in the British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League (BCIHL) season.
In the first period, it was the visiting Saints that got on the board first. Dylan Heppler redirected a shot in front of Zubick to put the visitors in front less than one minute after the opening puck drop. The Clan dominated the pace of play for the remainder of the period, and fired 14 shots on net to just six for the Saints. However, the Saints managed to hold their 1–0 lead heading into the first intermission.
The second period was far more equal with both teams trading chances. On an early SFU powerplay opportunity, first-year defender Jake Keremidschieff beat Selkirk goalie Talon Kramer but hit the post as the Clan struggled to find its offensive touch. Keremidschieff capitalized on another opportunity later in the frame by slipping a point shot through traffic that found the top corner to even the score. The Saints almost regained their lead on a late breakaway opportunity, but Zubick was up to the task and turned away one of the 14 shots he faced in the period as the game remained tied heading into the third.
A wild final 20 minutes of the game consisted of some fast-paced running and gunning, with both teams putting up multiple grade A chances. The Saints looked primed to take the lead on a dangerous odd-man rush, but Zubick stood tall and denied the Saints to keep the game tied. This particular save was vital, as just four minutes later SFU forward Kyle Bergh buried a chance in front to put the Clan ahead 2–1. Though the Saints pushed hard for a late equalizer with netminder Kramer on the bench for the extra attacker, their efforts came up short and the Clan secured their sixth win in a row.
Zubick was extremely impressive in the win, stopping 28 of the 29 shots he faced. Zubick now sits third in the BCIHL in both wins and save percentage, while holding the league’s best goals against average. After a week off, the Clan will look to extend their winning streak to seven games when the University of Victoria Vikes visits on February 7.