They say a series never starts until the home team loses a game.
Well, the Grande Prairie Athletics held serve for the third straight game as they took a 2-1 West Division Semi-Final series lead over the Fort St. John Flyers Saturday night.
Each team has won all three home games in the series, which shifts back to FSJ Tuesday night, with the Flyers hoping the trend continues.
GP never trailed in the game. Morgan MacLean opened the scoring at 7:13 only to see Adam Horst score his sixth of the playoffs to tie the game just past the midway point.
However, that would be all the scoring FSJ would muster on the night as GP goaltender Keifer Smiley was perfect afterwards.
Mark Stojan and Blake Clement would score second period goals to give GP a 3-1 lead, then Lynden Lewis scored into an empty net with 1:27 left to secure the win.
GP penalty killing was superb once again, allowing only one goal on seven FSJ PP chances.
FSJ outshot GP 38-31 with Smiley making 37 saves.
Flyers 1 at Athletics 4
Sat., Feb. 8
[Athletics lead series 2-1]
1. GP, Morgan MacLean 1 (Brock Clement, Andrew Buote) 7:13
2. FSJ, Adam Horst 6 (Ryan Carter, James Walsh) 11:30 (pp)
Penalties: Tyrell Mason GP (interference) 4:30, Tyrell Mason GP (interference) 8:48, Daylen Pearson FSJ (slashing) 18:54, Tyrell Mason GP (tripping) 19:26.
3. GP, Mark Stojan 1 (Mackenzie Caron, Andrew Buote) 17:31
4. GP, Blake Clement 1 (Morgan MacLean, Sheldon Hubbard) 19:17
Penalties: Mark Stojan GP (roughing) 1:28, Dennis Rix GP (slashing) 3:19, Daylen Pearson FSJ (high-sticking) 5:09, Kiefer Smiley (delay of game) 19:26.
5. GP, Lynden Lewis 2 (unassisted) 18:33
Penalties: Kelly Loudoun FSJ and Braden Crone GP (roughing) 7:03, Robbie Sidhu FSJ and Blake Clement GP (roughing) 11:17, James Walsh FSJ (roughing) 13:04, Jon Mirasty GP (cross-checking) 19:52.
Shots on goal:
Fort St. John 12 16 10 -38
Grande Prairie 13 12 6 -31 Goaltenders: Flyers, Travis McLean; Athletics, Kiefer Smiley.
Power Plays: FSJ 1-7; GP 0-3.
Penalties in Minutes: FSJ 10; GP 18.