Devils upset league leaders

Before the week began, a split would have been expected.

But after knocking off the league’s first place team on the road Thursday night, the North Delta Devils were looking for a sweep of their two Pacific Junior Hockey League games last week.

But the Devils had to settle for two of a possible four points, after they were upset 4-2 by the Ridge Meadows Flames Saturday night in the Sungod Arena.

The one win did push North Delta to 18-16-3-1 (won-loss-overtime loss-tied)  and closer to clinching a playoff position. They lead the last-place Grandview Steelers by eight points. The Steelers have just seven games remaining, while the Devils still have six to play.

Special teams lifted North Delta to a win Thursday in Richmond, as the visitors scored three times while on the power play to hang on for a 4-3 win over the first-place Sockeyes.

Max Fiedler netted a pair of power play goals in the first seven minutes of the game, both assisted by Benjamin Vikich, and Colin Catchpole added an even strength tally for a 3-0 North Delta lead.

Richmond crept to within one after 40 minutes, but Fiedler assisted on Matthew Painchaud’s game-winner six minutes into the third period for a 4-2 Devils lead.

Richmond got one back in the final minute of play, but lost for just the seventh time in 36 starts this season.

North Delta was outshot 34-31, but got a 31-save performance from goalie Tyler Read. Nicholas Reid contributed offensively with a pair of assists.

After falling behind 2-0 after 20 minutes Saturday night, the Devils pulled even on goals by Latrell Charleson and Lev De Waal in the second period.

But the Flames went ahead with two minutes to go, and added an empty net goal with 14 seconds remaining for the win.

The Devils will play a pair of Harold Brittain Conference foes next week, facing off against the 22-12-1-0 Aldergrove Kodiaks tomorrow (Wednesday) and the 5-28-2-0 Port Moody Panthers Saturday.

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