Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Memorable Weekend for Fordyce.

What a weekend for Prince George Cougars rookie goaltender Devon Fordyce. The 2009 Cougars sixth-round pick earned his first ever WHL victory, and did so against one of the league’s elite teams.

After a 5-1 loss Friday to Kamloops, Fordyce was called into action on Saturday by head-coach Dean Clark. It was up to the 17-year-old Fordyce to lead the Cougars at home against the B.C. Division leaders.

Before the game, Dean Clark said that all Fordyce had to do was keep things simple, and remain calm.

Fordyce’s confidence was tested early after Kamloops scored 3:30 into the game on their first shot. It would have been easy for Fordyce to cave under the early stress, but he bounced back and was flawless from there.

“Their first goal actually helped settle me down a bit,” said Fordyce during the post-game show Saturday. “You never want to let a goal in, but at least I was into the game.”

From there, Fordyce stopped all 26 remaining shots that he faced and the offense rose to the occasion and helped his cause.

Brock Hirsche scored at 5:38 of the first period to tie the score at one, and then Troy Bourke notched a power-play marker in the second period to give Prince George a lead that they would not surrender.

After being badly outshot through two periods, Kamloops came on big-time in the third. They fired 13 shots at Fordyce who turned them all away. He made big stops on Colin Smith, Dylan Willick and JC Lipon to keep his team ahead.

Alex Forsberg put the game away with an empty-netter, and Fordyce was able to celebrate his first WHL victory.

“It’s great for his confidence moving forward,” said Cougars General Manager Dallas Thompson. “Devon has worked hard and has been patient, and it was nice to see him rewarded.”

Drew Owsley remains the ‘go-to guy’ in goal for Prince George, but a little healthy competition is a good thing in hockey, and Fordyce’s success can only mean good things for the Prince George Cougars moving forward.

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