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 Abbotsford Canucks

Canucks Fall 7-2 in Their Final Game against the Coachella Valley Firebirds

April 7, 2024 - American Hockey League (AHL)
Abbotsford Canucks News Release


The Abbotsford Canucks faced off against the Coachella Valley Firebirds tonight for the final time this season, coming off a 2-1 overtime loss last night. They looked to get back in the win column and take home another 2 points.

Swapping out the netminders, Zach Sawchenko started between the pipes for the Canucks, and Ales Stezka started for the Firebirds. Supporting Sawchenko on the back end were Christian Wolanin and Nick Cicek, followed by Matt Irwin and Akito Hirose. Elias Pettersson paired up with Filip Johansson, and Alex Kannok Leipert drew back into the lineup.

Up front, no change to yesterday's lineup as Aatu Räty and Linus Karlsson bookended Max Sasson, and Sheldon Dries centered Tristen Nielsen and Marc Gatcomb. Arshdeep Bains lined up next to John Stevens and Jonathan Lekkerimäki, and Aidan McDonough and Chase Wouters round out the Canucks offense.

Not the start the Canucks were looking for, as John Hayden backhanded one past Sawchenko just 30 seconds into the game to put the Firebirds up 1-0. A couple of close calls for the Canucks but no one was able to squeak one through. Shortly after the 10-minute mark, Ian McKinnon intercepted a pass and found the wide-open Canucks net to notch his 1st of the season and put the Firebirds up 2-0. Just a few minutes later Cameron Hughes followed through on the momentum and netted his 24th goal of the season, and the Canucks were down 3-0 by the end of the first period.

As the team returned for the second period, Nikita Tolopilo took over in the Canucks net. The period remained scoreless for the first 7 minutes until Luke Henman broke the silence and netted the Firebird's fourth goal of the game and his 7th of the season. John Stevens came to the rescue at the 13-minute mark when he ripped one through the slot to make it 4-1 for the Canucks. Just a minute later, however, Cale Fleury snuck one through Tolopilo to restore the Firebirds' 4-goal lead. 2 minutes later, the Firebirds got another one, this time Lleyton Roed was the hero when he ripped one from the slot to put the Firebirds up 6-1. The Canucks tried to battle back, but a penalty to Irwin meant that Firebird Kole Lind went through the legs and into the net to make it 7-1. The Canucks were down by 6 heading into the final frame.

Looking to come back in the third, the Canucks d-core held strong and didn't allow any more Firebirds' goals. However, just past the halfway point, Arshdeep Bains fakes out the goalie from the point and rips one home for his 15th of the season. The Canucks trailed by 5 through the end of the game.

The Canucks fell 7-2 in their final game against the Coachella Valley Firebirds. Abbotsford will hit the road and head East to take on the Calgary Wranglers, before returning home for their final two regular season games.


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