PHOTO CREDIT: Damon James
The Wenatchee Wild traded goals with the Surrey Eagles through the first half of the game before finishing with four answered tallies to take a 6-3 victory on Saturday night at South Surrey Arena.
Surrey got on the board first midway through the opening period when a zone clearing attempt was held in at the blue line then pushed to Ty Westgard on the left circle who drove it home and the Eagles led 1-0 at the end of the first period. On Wenatchee’s second power play of the game five minutes into the second, the Wild had pressure and scored the tying goal two seconds after the penalty had been killed off, a blast from Chad Sasaki set up by Cristophe Tellier and Christophe Fillion at 5:07. Just :36 seconds later, a pass deflected away from the Wild as they entered the Eagles zone and Surrey forward Eric Linell raced off on a breakaway. The shot was denied by Wild goalie Austin Park but Ty Westgard, crashing the net poked home the rebound and put the Eagles back on top. Ryan Wilson collected a power play goal to knot the score at 2 apiece, his second power play goal in as many nights, assisted by Lucas Sowder and Brandon Koch. However, the Eagles again reclaimed the lead :34 seconds later, when Matteo Pecchia scored from a low angle on the left wing, prompting a Wild goaltending change, bringing Cal Sandquist into the game. Wenatchee responded by tying the game at 3-3 on a Christophe Fillion blast to finish off a sharp pass from Tellier, and Fillion would add what proved to be the game winner at 16:16, again assisted by Tellier and also linemate Nathan Iannone. For good measure, Chad Sasaki collected his second goal of the night as he snapped home the rebound of a Lucas Sowder shot with an assist also going to Murphy Stratton, and the Wild led 5-3 at the end of the second period with all five goals coming in the span of just over 12 minutes. Stratton would add a late empty netter to seal the victory. Former Wild goalie Seth Eisele went the distance, taking his second loss of the young season while Cal Sandquist earned his first win for Wenatchee, stopping all 12 shots he faced in nearly 32 minutes of work. Wenatchee outshot Surrey 35-23 on the night.
Wenatchee (2-0-0) heads north next Friday to face the Merritt Centennials (0-2-0), then visit West Kelowna on Saturday. The Wild Home Opener will be Friday October 12 against the Nanaimo Clippers, and will feature the unveiling of the Championship Banners, a Ring Ceremony, and more.