Vancouver – Reilly O’Connor had a hat trick and two assists but it was not enough as the New England Black Wolves fell to the Vancouver Warriors 12-9 on Saturday night at Rogers Arena.
Quinn Powless had two goals for New England (7-5) while Joe Resetarits added a goal and two assists. Stephan Leblanc had a goal and four assists and Tyler Digby added six helpers in the loss, which snapped a three game winning streak for the Black Wolves.
The newest member of the Black Wolves, Resetarits got the scoring started for New England, finding the back of the net just 3:32 into play to make it 1-0. Dereck Downs increased the Black Wolves’ lead to two with 6:16 remaining in the first before the Warriors (4-8) scored their first of the night with 4:40 to go. Powless put New England back up by two, 3-1, with 2:20 to go and O’Connor increased the lead to 4-1 with 46.7 seconds to play in the frame. However, Vancouver scored with just 2.7 seconds to go to make it 4-2 at the end of the first.
The Warriors continued their hot play in the second, scoring twice within an 18 second span to tie the game with 10:05 to go. The two teams traded goals throughout the rest of the half, with Andrew Suitor and Powless each finding the back of the net for New England and Logan Shuss and Mitch Jones each scoring for Vancouver to put the score at 6-6 at halftime.
Leblanc put the Black Wolves up 7-6 just 1:03 into the third quarter, but Vancouver tied it up at 7-7 with 11:49 to go on Jones’ third of the night. The Warriors took their first lead of the game on a power play goal with 4:33 left in the frame and went up by two, 9-7, just 22 seconds later. O’Connor scored his second of the night with 3:52 remaining in the frame to put the score at 9-8. Vancouver scored once with 42 seconds remaining to take a two goal lead, 10-8, at the end of the third.
The fourth quarter was scoreless until the Warriors scored with 3:36 to play to put the score at 11-8 Vancouver, but O’Connor scored his third of the night just over a minute later to cut the lead to two, 11-9, with 2:48 to play. Vancouver closed out the scoring with an empty net goal by Justin Salt with 1:25 remaining in the game.
Alex Buque had 34 saves in the loss for New England while Eric Penney recorded 38 saves in the win for Vancouver. Jones led the Warriors with six points on four goals and two assists while McBride had two goals and one helper.
The Black Wolves will be in action next on Saturday, March 23 when they travel to Philadelphia to take on the Wings. Game time is set for 7 p.m.