Hockey Central

Aces end season with 4 game winning streak

Aces end season with 4 game winning streak

March 8th, 2024

The second place Macau Aces faced off against the last overall Hong Kong Tycoons in a match that had no playoff implications, as every team in the SCIHL were locked into their respective places in the league standings. Nevertheless this was an important game for the Tycoons as they attempted to break their slump, having lost every match in the calendar year. Hong Kong was bolstered by the return of Jimi Fanstone and Connor Quinn and were looking to head into the playoffs on a winning note.

It was the Aces that drew first blood as the team would score three unanswered goals in a deflating opening period for the Tycoons. Whitney Olsen, second in SCIHL scoring, would get the first marker followed by U18 LPP Julian Ikeda's consecutive goals in the frame.

Down by three already to start the second period, Jeff Wall finally got the Tycoons on the board, scoring his 14th goal of the season. Aces goaltender Craig Gouk would continue with his solid play only allowing one goal on 12 shots in the period and his Tycoon counterpart Evan Thorpe had his best period shutting out Macau in the second frame with eight saves.

With the Aces going into the third period leading 3-1, Connor Quinn pulled the Tycoons within one goal early in the frame. The Aces quickly took back the two goal buffer though as Jesse Lussier would find the back of the net. Fighting a 4-2 deficit, Hong Kong pressed hard, throwing 16 shots on net in the third period. Unfortunately for the Tycoons, they found themselves in penalty trouble late in the period. With a man down and just less than two minutes remaining in the game, their opponents seized the opportunity. Macau extinguished any hopes of a late game comeback with a power play marker by U18 LPP Julian Ikeda, closing out the game in a 5-2 Aces victory over the Hong Kong Tycoons.

The Macau Aces continue on with their roll and will head into the playoffs against the Kowloon Warriors in the first round. Goaltender Craig Gouk had one of his best games all season and was pivotal in the Aces' victory, making 34 saves on 36 Tycoon shots. Gouk finishes the year as arguably the league's best goalie, just edging out RBC's Rudi Bernart in goals against average and save percentage, along with tying Bernart with the most wins. On the offensive side of things, Whitney Olsen's two points in the evening has the Minnesota native finishing with 46 points in 15 games this season, good for second overall in SCIHL scoring.

Facing a hot goalie, the Tycoons could only muster up a pair of goals against the Aces and will be looking for a miracle as they face the powerhouse RBC Lions in the opening round of the playoffs. Connor Daly's assist brought the HK native to 38 points this season, good for forth in SCIHL scoring. Meanwhile, Francis Lam and Leon Ruelle would end the season each averaging two points per game. Finally, Jeff Wall showed he still had it as the veteran was just shy of a goal per game pace this season.

UPCOMING GAMES - March 14th @ Discovery Bay Ice Rink

Game 1: Lions vs Tycoons @ 8:15 pm
Game 2: Aces vs Warriors @ 9:15 pm

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