It was no contest.
The Fort St. John Flyers blasted the hometown Manning Comets 12-0 Friday night but all is not lost for MAN.
MAN still leads the Grimshaw Huskies by one point in the race for second in the East Division and home ice advantage in their upcoming playoff series.
MAN’s loss sets up a big game in GRIM next Friday, Feb. 1. By that time, MAN will know exactly what they have to do to place second. If GRIM loses at FAL tonight [Saturday], MAN can clinch with a win. If GRIM wins at FAL and at home to MAN, GRIM clinches. But if GRIM loses at FAL and wins at home vs MAN, all MAN has to do is win at last place HP on Feb. 2, or lose in overtime or a shootout, to place second. MAN would win any possible tie in the standings.
MAN’s shutout loss at home vs FSJ was its worst since the NPHL began tracking shutouts in 1989-90. The previous worst was a 9-0 thumping vs GRIM on Dec. 5, 1996.
FSJ also completed the rare season series sweep of winning both games by shutouts: FSJ won 8-0 at home Dec. 15.
Also, FSJ has been involved in all three shutouts this season: they lost 3-0 at GP on Dec. 8.
FSJ led by period scores of 4-0 and 6-0. They scored five power play goals in eight chances and added two short-handed efforts.
Rick Cleaver scored four goals and added an assist to lead FSJ. Reid Campbell and Jeff Shipton each scored twice and added two assists, while Lien Miller-Jeannotte also scored twice. Joey Massingham scored once and added three assists; Robbie Sidhu scored once and added one assist.
Travis McLean stopped 18 shots to record the shutout.
Flyers 12 at Comets 0
Friday, Jan. 25
1. FSJ, Robbie Sidhu 8 (Sam Brennan) 1:56 (pp)
2. FSJ, Rick Cleaver 12 (Ryan Forbes, Lien Miller-Jeannotte) 5:36 (pp)
3. FSJ, Lien Miller-Jeannotte 5 (unassisted) 12:23 (sh)
4. FSJ, Rick Cleaver 13 (Daylen Pearson, Jeff Shipton) 17:23
Penalties: Michael Gillen MAN (hooking) 00:35, Jarod Lorencz MAN (hooking) 4:44, Dalton Ducharme MAN (high-sticking) 7:40, Reid Campbell FSJ (slashing) 11:15, Jaxon Glass FSJ (slashing) 17:23.
5. FSJ, Jeff Shipton 6 (Joey Massingham, Sam Brennan) 8:41
6. FSJ, Rick Cleaver 14 (Jeff Shipton, Robbie Sidhu) 12:22
Penalties: Taylor Paulovich MAN (roughing) 1:17, Joey Massingham FSJ (hooking) 5:24, Ryan Forbes FSJ (hooking) and Michael Gillen MAN (unsportsmanlike) 6:53, Klay Mosure MAN (goaltender interference) 10:34, Robbie Sidhu FSJ (hooking) 13:25.
7. FSJ, Reid Campbell 8 (Rick Cleaver) 2:04
8. FSJ, Rick Cleaver 15 (Reid Campbell, Daylen Pearson) 10:54 (pp)
9. FSJ, Reid Campbell 9 (Jaxon Glass, Joey Massingham) 13:54
10. FSJ, Jeff Shipton 7 (unassisted) 16:12 (sh)
11. FSJ, Joey Massingham 13 (Reid Campbell) 19:14 (pp)
12. FSJ, Lien Miller-Jeannotte 6 (Sam Brennan, Joey Massingham) 19:46 (pp)
Penalties: Tyler Dillman MAN (cross-checking) and Michael Vreeling MAN (misconduct) 9:03, Joey Massingham FSJ (interference) 15:32, Klay Mosure MAN (slashing) 17:12, Daylen Person FSJ (roughing, unsportsmanlike) and Tyler Dillman MAN (double roughing, unsportsmanlike) 17:48.
Shots on goal:
Fort St. John 26 19 17 -62
Manning 8 8 2 -18 Goaltenders: Flyers, Travis McLean; Comets, Braden Gamble
(Beau Fedorowicz in at 13:30 of third period).
Power Plays: FSJ 5-8; MAN 0-5.
Penalties in Minutes: FSJ 16; MAN 32.