The Farmies: Arturs Silovs makes 32 saves in 4-3 overtime victory, keeping Abby Canucks’ home ice advance hopes alive

Dave Hall
7 days ago
Yes, the Abbotsford Canucks clinched a playoff spot weeks ago. But that didn’t take away from tonight being a meaningful game.
With another win against the Calgary Wranglers, they are tied with the Colorado Eagles for fourth place in the Pacific Division.
What’s the big fuss over a fourth-placed division finish, you ask? Home ice for the first round of the playoffs.
They aren’t out of the doghouse just yet, however. The Eagles play a weekend doubleheader against the third-placed Ontario Reign and now enjoy a game in hand.
But the Canucks will fry that fish tomorrow. Tonight, they sit in a tie for fourth.
Let’s check in on the game, shall we?
Opening lineup
The forward group has found a nice rhythm recently, and as a result, has remained fairly intact for several weeks — running eleven forwards and seven defenders.
Tonight’s big change came on the backend, where Cole McWard drew back into the lineup after missing 10 games with an injury.
Fresh off his 3-0-1 stint in Vancouver, Arturs Silovs saw his first AHL start between the pipes since March 9th, well over a month ago.
Game #71
1st period
The freshly reassigned NHLer, Artus Silovs, stole the show right out the gate, making not one.
Not two.
But three big saves in the initial two minutes.
Two of which required extremely athletic stretches to deny his opponents scoring opportunities.
1–0 Wranglers: Calgary goal, Clark Bishop (unassisted)
Unfortunately, the Latvian backstop could only stand on his head for so long, as the Wranglers finally managed to slip one past him on their fourth attempt.
The goal came after a weak giveaway from veteran defender Christian Wolanin, who, under pressure, made an uncharacteristic error. The eventual goalscorer stuck with the puck to sneak one past Silovs.
Later in the period, Arshdeep Bains and Aidan McDonough rekindled some chemistry, executing a slick play orchestrated by Bains.
Following a strong cycle shift, Bains collected the puck from behind the net and set up McDonough with a crafty backhand pass, creating the Canucks’ best scoring opportunity of the game.
Just as the team began to build momentum, Ty Glover took an untimely cross-checking penalty, sending the Wranglers to the game’s first power play opportunity.
  • PK1Chase Wouters, John Stevens, Matt Irwin and Nick Cicek
  • PK2Marc Gatcomb, Sheldon Dries, Guillaume Brisebois and Christian Wolanin
Despite being shorthanded, the Canucks dominated play and generated the stretches only two shots.
Directly out of the penalty box, Glover found himself on a sprung breakaway opportunity, but he mishandled the pass. As he collected the puck from behind the net, his elbow made contact with the Wrangler defender, throwing up the chicken wing to earn him a jaunt right back into the box.
Cue the Abe Simpson GIF.
This time, Calgary looked dangerous, creating several scoring chances, including a missed opportunity “should have been in” approach from forward Sam Morton. Despite the yawning cage, he sent the puck high and wide before throwing out his neck in disbelief.
After a hectic go-go stretch, the game caught its breath for a few minutes.
That was until Marc Gatcomb attempted to put things in his own hands, collecting two strong chances in the final minutes of the frame.
Despite facing significant pressure and enduring two penalty kills, the Canucks managed to outshoot the Wranglers 13-10 in the first period.
Unfortunately, they found themselves trailing by a goal heading into the intermission.
2nd period
The start of the second period resembled that of the first, with early chances pouring in from the Wranglers, forcing Silovs to react quickly.
However, this time, the Canucks responded accordingly, tying the game just moments later.
1-1 tie: Abbotsford goal, Linus Karlsson from Aatu Raty and Max Sasson
After a turnover in the neutral zone, Sasson drove a cross-ice feed toward the net, touching Raty along the way. The puck found its way to Karlsson, who poked in the rebound for his team-leading 58th point of the season.
Just seconds after finding the equalizer, Aidan McDonough got his stick caught up in a Calgary forward’s footing, killing any momentum they may have gained.
The Wranglers turned up the heat during their power play, firing a total of six shots on Silovs, who was up to the task for each one.
At this point, Silovs had already solidified his status as tonight’s first star, not just due to the number of shots faced, but also the impressive manner in which he handled them.
After another strong penalty kill from the Canucks, Sasson received a double minor penalty for high sticking on a Calgary forward, sending them to yet another power play.
BUT just 13 seconds into the man advantage, Jeremy Poirier sinned himself, knocking the stick out of John Stevens’ hands, resulting in a 4-on-4 situation.
But wait, there’s more!
Shortly after the 4-on-4 began, the Wranglers took a high-sticking call of their own, leading to a 4-on-3 power play for the Canucks.
Are you keeping up?
The Canucks generated several scoring opportunities, with one of the best chances coming from Linus Karlsson, who battled for the puck in front of the net, spun around, and almost beat Connor Murphy for his second goal of the period.
2-1 Wranglers: Calgary goal, Mitch McLain from Jordan Oesterle
After swapping power plays for the next few minutes, it was the Wranglers who broke the tie, with Mitch McLain jamming a rebound from the doorstep at the tail end of their power play.
2-2 tie: Abbotsford goal, Sheldon Dries
Less than a minute later, Sheldon Dries shocked everyone in the building, firing a shot directly off of the face-off which trickled through the legs of Connor Murphy.
Legend has it that fans are still trying to figure out what exactly happened…
3-2 Canucks: Abbotsford goal, Aidan McDonough from Arshdeep Bains and Christian Wolanin
Shortly after, on the power play, Bains and McDonough connected on a cross-ice feed one-timer play, with McDonough scoring to give the Canucks their first lead of the game.
In the dying minutes, Tristen Nielsen got tangled up in the corner, falling awkwardly into the boards. He skated directly to the bench before heading straight down the tunnel.
After a whirlwind of a game, thus far, the Canucks’ took their first lead of the game and after the 20-minute penalty bonanza, the Canucks found themselves up by a goal after two periods.
3rd period
Okay, I think we filled our quota for penalty highlights, so here’s to hoping we have none more during this game.
Nick Cicek 48 seconds into the period:
It was here where the Wranglers nearly tied the game following a sly through-the-legs pass from McLain.
Silovs was so good all night, he made stops while facing the opposite direction!
The Canucks managed a good stretch of shots following another successful kill, including a near-goal from Tristen Nielsen, who was denied from the slot.
As the period progressed, the pace of the game slowed down, with the Canucks focusing on protecting their one-goal lead.
That backfired in the final five minutes, as the Wranglers got their own goal off of a face-off.
3-3 tie: Calgary goal, Jakob Pelletier from Cole Schwindt
Despite the face-off loss, the puck found its way to Pelletier’s stick while all alone before Arturs Silovs. With his team-leading fourth shot, he made no mistake, beating the netminder through the wickets.
That would send this game into extra time, tied 3-3 apiece.
It was advantage Calgary to kick off the extra frame, as a Canuck defender was down a broken stick.
The Wranglers applied nearly a minute of solid sustained pressure in search of the game-winning goal, but Silovs remained composed and made a crucial save to keep the game at bay.
Shortly after, Max Sasson put on the afterburners, forcing his way past defenders before unleashing a shot high over the goaltender’s net.
We find ourselves saying this nearly once every Farmie, but boy, Sasson can skate.
Tristen Nielsen was up to his own tricks…
And with a hair over a minute left in overtime, the Wranglers stayed true to the night’s theme, taking a late penalty to give the Canucks one last chance on the power play.
They made no mistake.
4-3 Canucks: Abbotsford goal, Christian Wolanin from Linus Karlsson and Sheldon Dries
With all of the time in the world, Christian Wolanin made up for his terrible blunder from earlier in the match and snapped home his fifth of the season from the slot.
And with that, home-ice advantage is still in sight.
Final score
The Abbotsford Canucks defeat the Calgary Wranglers 4-3 in overtime.
CanucksArmy three stars
Tonight’s first star, with a bullet, was Arturs Silovs. Not only did he stop 32 of 35 shots, but looked incredibly composed throughout the night, making several high-grade saves.
Taking home the game’s second star for his overtime-clinching goal and two points on the night is Christian Wolanin. The veteran defender will be a huge asset to the club’s playoff push.
And tonight’s third star goes to the club’s leading goalscorer, Sheldon Dries, who picked up another two points. Dries has quietly been one of the most consistent producers on this team’s forward group.
Next on the docket
The two teams will conclude their 2023-24 regular season schedules with a rematch on Saturday evening. The puck drop is set for 7:00 PM PST.

Check out these posts...