U18 Canadians Pick Up One Point vs. Royals

by K.P. Wee

The U18 AAA Greater Vancouver Canadians earned one point in their regular season-ending series against the Vancouver Island Royals, earning a 4-4 tie on Saturday in Victoria and losing 4-3 on Sunday in North Saanich.

The Canadians finished the regular season with a 7-25-3-1 mark, good for seventh place in the U18 standings. They will take on the second-place NE Chiefs (28-4-2-2) in the opening round of the playoffs after a bye week. 

On Saturday at Victoria’s Ian H. Stewart Complex, the Royals jumped out to a 4-2 lead after two periods, but goals by Lucas Epp and A.J. Abell in the third period gave the Canadians a 4-4 tie. Yashas Jain scored twice in the second period (his 11th and 12th goals), before Epp’s fifth goal of the season, 3:25 into the third on the power play, made it 4-3. Abell’s tying goal came with only 2:20 remaining—his team-best 13th tally of the season—as GVC was able to salvage a point. 

On Sunday at North Saanich’s Panorama Rec Centre, the Royals again jumped out to a big lead, this time 4-1 after two periods. Once again, the Canadians tried to come back, with Maxfeld Shin scoring twice in the third—his 10th and 11th of the year—but the Royals hung on for the 4-3 victory. James Lin, with his fourth of the season, had the other GVC goal. 

For the season, A.J. Abell led all Canadians players with 13 goals, while Yashas Jain and Graham Kilpatrick finished tied for second with 12. Jack MacFarlane and Maxfeld Shin each had 11 goals. Lucas Epp, meanwhile, finished with a team-high 21 assists, and Jain finished with a team-leading 32 points.

Next up, the opening round of the playoffs at the Scotia Barn in Burnaby vs. the NE Chiefs from March 8 to March 10 in a best-of-three series. As of this writing, the games are scheduled for 4:00 p.m. on Friday the 8th (Game One), 3:15 p.m. on Saturday the 9th (Game Two), and (if necessary) 10:30 a.m. on Sunday the 10th (Game Three). All playoff contests can be seen on playfullscreen.com