Filiou sinks Warriors with surprise shot

WESTSIDE — Eric Filiou saw his chance and he took advantage of it.

WESTSIDE — Eric Filiou saw his chance and he took advantage of it.

“At the hash marks I had seen that he (Kevin Jebson) wasn’t on the post and it went in,” said Filiou, of his 4-3 overtime winning goal, which ranks among the top goals he’s scored. “It went off his back leg and in. I wanted to put it there. I didn’t actually see it go in. Logan (Johnston) and (Ryan) Viselli were right in my face. It was an unbelievable moment.”

A moment that left nearly everyone in Royal LePage Place in shock. From the right corner, Filiou decided to fire the puck on net with Johnston heading there and (Filly as his teammates call him) was rewarded.

Prior to that goal, the Warriors had fired nine shots at Bonar, who didn’t lose any confidence after the Vees were two hundredths of a second from winning in regulation. Cam Reid and Trevor Bailey had the best chances for the Warriors in overtime to send the series to Game 7 but Bonar denied both. He finished with 36 saves on the night.

After Brendan Ellis opened the scoring for the Warriors on a play which they crashed the Vees’ crease, Johnston replied with 0.8 seconds remaining in the first as his wrist shot beat Jebson high glove. Jebson didn’t have a strong night making 20 saves. In the second period, Vees captain Denver Manderson blew a slapshot past Jebson’s stick side. Viselli made it 3-1 with a low shot as he went to the net.

When Filiou became the overtime hero for the Vees, Manderson said “in overtime it’s never a good goal.”

“Thank God it went in,” he added.

Manderson admitted the Warriors had the momentum and that can be tough to control.

“Lots of guys were saying what’s going on,” he said, as they were stuck in their zone battling along the boards several times. “They were playing for their playoff lives.”

The Vees will now prepare to take on the Vernon Vipers who shutout Quesnel 5-0. In the Coastal Conference, the Powell River Kings will play the Alberni Valley Bulldogs.