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Game Day | PG at TRA

The second largest Cominco Arena crowd of the 2023-24 season saw a Smoke Eaters rookie record a highlight reel goal for his first in the BCHL and witnessed the team’s hottest shooter snipe his first hat-trick of the campaign during a 9-4 win over Langley, delighting the 2,170 fans in Trail.

Mathieu Cobetto-Roy got the game’s first two goals and snapped a sizzler into the top corner early in the second period for his 17th goal of the season to complete the trifecta. The slick Smokies centreman who is on a four-game goal-scoring streak almost had four goals as his first shot of the game clanged off the crossbar. Cobetto-Roy has lit the lamp in seven of the last eight games.

Meanwhile, first year defenceman Jack Ketsa finished a sensational end-to-end rush in the third period, sending a low shot past Rivermen goalie Mason Beaupit before crashing into the visiting netminder. The officials reviewed the play and determined the puck went into the net before the collision.

Trail led 3-0 after one period and 5-1 heading to the third, before a wild final frame that saw the two teams tally seven times in total.

Ridge Dawson’s ripper, in close from the left-wing into the top corner at 2:46 of the second period gave Trail a 4-0 lead. The hard-nosed winger also closed out the scoring late in the third with a power play shot from the slot. Chase Stefanek also potted a power play goal as Trail went 2-for-2 with the man advantage. He is considered a fifth round draft prospect among North American skaters in the latest rankings by NHL Central Scouting.

Jason Stefanek and Josh Schenk rounded out the scoring, while Gryphon Bucci, Ethan Mann and Adam Parsons had two assists each. Goalie Teagan Kendrick made 26 saves to pick up his 7th win of the season.

Vitaly Levvy led the Rivermen with two goals, while linemates Oskar Komarov and Tuuka Heiskanen also scored for Langley, who outshot the Smokies 30-27.

Trail will host Prince George Sunday afternoon.

The Spruce Kings rallied from a 3-1 deficit in Chilliwack on Friday night and clipped the Chiefs 4-3 in overtime.

It’s also a rematch of the pre-Christmas doubleheader in Prince George that saw the Smokies skate away with a wild and wacky 8-7 win in the opener, with the Spruce Kings posting a 3-0 victory in game two.

Opening faceoff at Cominco Arena on Sunday is at 3 o’clock.