BRYAN WILSON – 09.15.2023

PENTICTON, B.C. – The Flames’ prospects fell 7-1 to the Vancouver Canucks’ young-guns at the South Okanagan Events Centre on Friday night, in their first game of the 2023 Young Stars Classic.

Lucas Ciona scored the lone marker for the Flames and added a physical element, as well, finishing checks and dropping the mitts in the contest.

Matt Radomsky got the start between the pipes for the Flames, turning aside 29 shots in the loss.

The Canucks came out firing to start the game, outshooting the Flames 19-2 in the opening 20 minutes. As a result, they opened the scoring at the 11:48 mark of the frame, when Vilmer Arliksson got his stick on a Cole McWard point shot, redirecting the puck past Radomsky.

The boys in blue continued to apply a sustained attack, and with a powerplay late in the period, Aidan McDonough fired home his first goal of the tournament to extend the Canucks lead to 2-0 heading into the break.

Momentum turned in the Flames’ favour after successfully killing off a penalty early in the second period, and as the pace quickened, Calgary began to push back on offence.

Jaden Lipinski rushed up the ice with the puck on his stick, finding Adam Klapka at the side of the net who patiently waited for an opening in front, and sent the puck towards the goal, which bounced off Ciona in front and into the back of the net. 2-1.

Later, Matt Coronato and Sam Honzek connected for a fabulous one-timer chance, however, it was turned aside by Canucks’ netminder, Nikita Tolopilo. Off the rebound, Vancouver picked up the loose puck and sped up the ice in transition, where Lucas Gatcomb proceeded to curl, drag and rip a quick wrister by the blocker of Radomsky.

Then it began to get chippy.

Coronato was taken down in the corner in the Canucks end, which Ciona took exception to, eventually dropping the mitts with Quinn Schmiemann for a spirited scrap.

It remained 3-1 Canucks through 40 minutes.

Vancouver extended its lead at 4:08 of the third period, when McWard fluttered a shot from the blueline that found its way through Radomsky to make it 4-1, and they would add another tally under a minute later (5:17) courtesy Jacob Maillet, who walked in from the hash-marks and whistled a quick shot past the Flames netminder to all but put the game on ice.

Filip Johansson and Karel Plasek both added late tallies for good measure to seal it for the Canucks.

The Flames face off against their provincial rivals, the Edmonton Oilers, on Saturday night at 8:30 pm MST.  You can watch the live stream of the event at