Abbotsford Pilots mauled by Kodiaks

Pilots likely to take on Ridge Meadows Flames in round one of playoffs

Pilots forward Kolby Steen battles against a Kodiak during PJHL action on Friday

Pilots forward Kolby Steen battles against a Kodiak during PJHL action on Friday

The Abbotsford Pilots now know who they will be squaring off against in round one of the Pacific Junior Hockey League playoffs, and thankfully it’s not the Aldergrove Kodiaks.

Abbotsford’s first round dance partner is likely to be the Ridge Meadows Flames, after the Flames posted a 2-1 win over the Mission City Outlaws on Friday.

The Pilots battled the Kodiaks, the PJHL’s top team in the regular season, on Friday and were blown out 8-1.

The goals came early and often for the Kodiaks, as they had a 3-0 lead after one, and made it 5-0 after two.

The Pilots got on the board in the third period when affiliate player Michael Guzzo was sent in all alone after a nice pass from Phillip Gauthier and broke the shutout bid of Aldergrove goalie Dawson Rodin. Pilots defender Tyler Wickman drew the second assist on the goal.

It was a good debut for Guzzo, as the Vancouver native was named the game’s third star in his first-ever PJHL game.

The Pilots had no answer for the Kodiaks, as Aldergrove outshot Abbotsford 48-28, and Pilots goalie Jacob Crawford was chased from the crease in the second period after allowing five goals on 26 shots. Backup Noah Giesbrecht allowed three goals on 22 shots in relief.

Abbotsford was scheduled to travel to Port Moody to take on the Panthers on Saturday, but poor weather conditions led to the game being cancelled. Details on the rescheduling of that game have not yet been released.

The Pilots record now sits at 24 wins, 14 losses and four overtime losses.

The series with the Flames is likely to start next week. Abbotsford won the season series against Ridge Meadows, defeating the Flames in three of the five games. The teams last met on Jan. 6, when the Pilots won 7-2.

The Pilots are scheduled to close out the season on Saturday, when they take on the Outlaws in Mission on Saturday.