Pilots defenceman Sahvan Gill battles for the puck during PJHL action on Friday. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)

Abbotsford Pilots blank White Rock at home

PJHL club remains on the outside of the playoff bubble

The Abbotsford Pilots felt both the joy and agony of shutout over the weekend.

The Pacific Junior Hockey League ended November on a high note, blanking the White Rock Whalers 4-0 inside MSA Arena on Friday night.

After a scoreless first period, the Pilots got on the board at 9:25 of the second with a power play goal by Devon Wolfe.

The club then exploded for three goals in the third period, as Alexander Beechey, Jared Pikethly and Mason Smith all tallied.

Smith had a three-point night, while Beechey and Pikethly both had two-point games.

Pilots goalie Noah Masog stopped all 34 shots he faced for his second shutout this season and the third of his PJHL career. Abbotsford outshot White Rock 41-36 in the win.

The club returned to action on Sunday, but were shut out themselves as they lost 2-0 to the Grandview Steelers in Burnaby.

The first two periods were scoreless, and Grandview eventually got on the board at 4:28 of the third period. The Steelers added a late empty-net goal.

The Pilots were outshot 23-16 and starting goalie Brock Machholz made 21 saves in the loss. Abbotsford went zero for five on the power play on Sunday, and the club now has the worst power play percentage in the league at 12.5. The Pilots have scored 18 power play goals on 144 opportunities this season. The power play has really struggled on home ice, with Abbotsford connecting on only 9.68 per cent of all chances.

The Pilots’ record now sits at 9-17 on the season and they are ranked fifth in the Harold Brittain Conference. Abbotsford is currently eight spots out of the fourth and final playoff spot in the conference.

Abbotsford next travels to Surrey on Thursday to take on the winless Knights. The Pilots return home on Friday to host the Delta Ice Hawks. Face-off is set for 7:30 p.m.

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