Fernie Ghostriders push for playoffs
By Matt Laurin
The Fernie Ghostriders pulled off an improbable 6 - 5 comeback win on Friday night in Golden, before dropping a 4 – 1 decision in Invermere on Saturday.
With 11 games remaining in the regular season, the Ghostriders (26 – 12 – 1 – 2) find themselves tied with the Golden Rockets for top spot in the Eddie Mountain Division.
Things could have gone much worse for the Riders. Trailing the Rockets 5 – 2 after two periods, Fernie responded with three consecutive goals before Derek Georgopoulos eventually scored the game winner in overtime.
“It was a huge win Friday night for us. To come back in the third period against a team like Golden really showed us what character we have,” said head coach Barry Wolff.
Josh McKissock, whose two third-period goals helped spark the comeback, said his team never stopped working.
“Really it just came down to a never-quit attitude. It was gut check time and we came through,” said the Riders captain.
McKissock led the way, scoring six minutes into the third period and then adding a late powerplay goal. Connor Lowe-Wylde scored less than a minute later to send the game into overtime.
“It’s always nice to contribute,” McKissock said. “But really, it was a couple of really good plays by my linemates to set me up.”
Despite the comeback, the Ghostriders were unable to carry the momentum into Invermere.
Brendan Burge’s two first-period goals against his former team proved to be the difference, as the Rockies held on for a 4 – 1 win. The Riders held a 48 – 29 edge in shots.
“There were moments where we were definitely the better team, but a couple of breakdowns really cost us,” McKissock said. “We’re going to take the positives, and learn from it going into this week.”
With six out of their next seven games at home, the Riders have a chance to solidify their chances of winning a fourth-consecutive Eddie Mountain Division title.
“There’s no better place to play in this league,” McKissock said. “We have to prove that over the next few weeks.”
The Riders’ next home game is Friday night against the Penticton Lakers. As always, puck drops at 7:30 p.m.