Trail, BC – It was quite a homecoming for the Smoke Eaters (9-19-1-1) as they scored 7 unanswered goals in an 8-2 win over Quesnel (10-17-0-3). Trail wrapped up the first half of the season with only their 10th home game. The win starts a stretch of 13 of their next 15 games at the Cominco Arena.
Quesnel got goals from Jacob Verheyden and Elliot Raible to take a couple of early one goal leads. However, the Trail offensive machine came alive with 5 second period goals.
Tye Lewis scored his first BCHL hat trick to the lead the way. Scott Jacklin continued his career year with 4 more points while Steve Koshey added 4 of his own. Mike Betz chipped in with 3 assists to bring his point total to 11 in 5 games with the Smoke Eaters.
Trail also got 2 points each from Travis St. Denis, Sam Mellor and Nick Sandor. Kiefer Smiley made 33 saves for his second straight win in the Trail goal.
The Smoke Eaters will host Prince George on Friday night to wrap up all their games with the BCHL's northern teams. Trail won the season series with Williams Lake 3-1, tied Quesnel 2-2 and leads Prince George 2-1.
ON THE TRAIL: The win was Trail's first against Kirby Halcrow in the Quesnel goal. He had only allowed 3 goals in 2 other starts against the Smokies ... Matt Wilkins returned to the line-up for Trail after missing 18 games with a broken jaw. He played on a line with Darnell Dyck and Paul Mailey that produced a goal for Dyck ... Graeme Strukoff was sitll out with a lower body injury while Wade Bennet and Thomas Abenante were scratched. Taylor O'Neil played as an AP for Trail on the blue line. The 1990 born Kelowna product is in his second season with the KIJHL's Nelson Leafs. He played a solid game with his former Nelson teammate Tommy Rizzardo ... Trail's previously struggling penalty kill didn't allow a single goal on Quesnel's 6 power plays. The PK is running at 80% efficiency at home and just over 65% on the road.
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