The New Westminster Salmonbellies picked up a 9-6 win over the Langley Thunder on Saturday night to force a Game 7 in the WLA Finals.
It will be winner-takes-all on Tuesday night at Queen’s Park Arena. Langley will be looking to win back-to-back WLA titles, while New Westminster is looking for their first championship since 2017.
Waiting in the wings are the MSL champion Six Nations Chiefs to take on the winner for the Mann Cup.
Zach Higgins had himself a night in the New Westminster goal. Langley outshot the Salmonbellies 52-41 but Higgins turned away 46 shots for the win.
Salmonbellies Jump Out To Huge League
New Westminster jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first period. Higgin stopped all 13 shots he faced in the first.
Kevin Crowley opened the scoring for the Salmonbellies 5:30 into the game. Keegan Bal would then make it 2-0 at the 7:09 mark.
Ryan Martel rounded out the scoring at 10:36 to give New Westminster a three-goal lead.
Langley Inches Closer In The Second
Crowley once again opened the second period scoring to round out a four-goal run for the Salmonbellies.
After going scoreless for 22:24, Curtis Dickson got Langley on the board. Dane Dobbie followed that up at 6:59 as the Thunder trailed 4-2.
Haiden Dickson restored New Westminster’s three-goal cushion on the power play at 9:50. However, Chase Scanlan answered back 1:04 later.
Robert Church rounded out the second-period scoring with 1:12 left as New Westminster led 5-4 heading into the final frame.
New Westminster Holds On To Force A Game 7
The Salmonbellies and Thunder exchanged goals to open the third period. Keegan Bal got on the board 3:41 into the third. Church followed that up 3:17 later to make it 6-5 for the ‘Bellies.
New Westminster started to put the game out of reach late in the third. Will Malcom continued to strong playoff push with a goal with 8:06 on the clock. Martel then made it 8-5 for New Westminster with 6:30 left in the game.
With the goalie pulled for the extra attacker, Dobbie was able to get a goal back for Langley with 2:54 on the clock. Drew Belgrave scored an unassisted marker with 1:18 to play as New Westminster forced a Game 7 with a 9-6 victory.
- Zach Higgins, New Westminster Salmonbellies
- Mitch Jones, New Westminster Salmonbellies
- Curtis Dickson, Langley Thunder
New Westminster Salmonbellies
Mitch Jones, 4a
Keegan Bal, 2g 2a
Kevin Crowley, 2g 1a
Curtis Dickson, 1g 3a
Robert Church, 2g 1a
Dane Dobbie, 2g 1a