The Abbotsford Canucks were edged 4-3 in overtime by the Ontario Reign on Tuesday (Oct. 19). (Ontario Reign Instagram photo)

The Abbotsford Canucks were edged 4-3 in overtime by the Ontario Reign on Tuesday (Oct. 19). (Ontario Reign Instagram photo)

Abbotsford Canucks fight back to earn a point against Ontario

Abbotsford trailed 2-0 for much of the game, but battled back only to lose 4-3 in overtime

For a few moments early in the first period, it looked like Tuesday (Oct. 19) was going to be a long night for the Abbotsford Canucks.

The Ontario Reign scored two goals in 34 seconds, and despite being shorthanded twice it was Ontario who had the quality chances in the ensuing minutes.

But, a late second period goal by Carson Focht slowly turned the tide for the Canucks and the power play connected at 4:29 of the third when Sheldon Dries tied the game at two. About 11 minutes later Justin Bailey showed off his blazing speed and put Abbotsford up for the first time, but the Reign sent the game to overtime after pulling their goalie when Tyler Madden put one by Michael DiPietro.

Overtime wasn’t friendly to Abbotsford, as Madison Bowey took a tripping penalty just 15 seconds into the extra frame and Martin Frk scored to give the Reign the 4-3 win.

Abbotsford departs Ontario with three out of four possible points in the two-game set and now head back to British Columbia for the franchise’s home opener on Friday (Oct. 22).

RELATED: Abbotsford Canucks post first-ever win

Both DiPietro and Reign goalie Matthew Villalta were spectacular at times, and each gave their team a chance to win. Each goalie made 26 saves.

Dries and Bailey both had one goal and one assists, while defenceman Cameron Schilling, who slotted into the lineup today for Adam Brubacher had three assists. Reigning American Hockey League most valuable player T.J. Tynan had a two-point night for Ontario.

Attendance for the game was a reported 1,354. The Canucks record now moves to 1-1-1-0, while Ontario is 2-0-0-1.

Today’s game comes on the heels of news that sports events in many parts of British Columbia will be able to host full capacity attendance events starting on Oct. 25. However, the eastern Fraser Valley is not one of those areas as Abbotsford and its neighbours to the east are under a regional restriction due to COVID-19.

The news means that Friday’s home opener against the Henderson Silver Knights, as well as Sunday’s game game against the Knights will be 50 per cent capacity. That will be the case moving forward until the current situation improves.

Read Thursday’s print edition of the Abbotsford News for more on the team.

RELATED: B.C. to lift capacity limits for indoor ticketed, organized events as of Oct. 25