A double dose of bad luck turned a strong road effort into another tough loss for the Coquitlam Express.
The B.C. Hockey League team outshot its rivals for just the 10th time in 36 games but ended up falling 5-3 in Chilliwack to the Chiefs.
The two clubs stood deadlocked 2-2 after 20 minutes, but a pair of flukey markers in the middle frame proved to be the Express' undoing.
Midway through the game, the Chiefs' Mathieu Tibbett was credited with a goal that was accidentally swatted behind Coquitlam's Cole Huggins by one of his defencemen. Three minutes later, Huggins was victimized by a bad bounce on a dump-in from centre ice by Luke Esposito, who would finish with two goals.
"If you watched the game you'd say we out-played them," remarked Express coach and general manager Jon Calvano. "We played well at both ends of the ice and opened it up offensively in the third trying to stay in the game."
John Siemer, Philip Zielonka and Travis Stephens recorded the Express goals.
Coquitlam now sits three points back of Langley, who are in the fourth and final playoff spot. With 20 games left in the regular season, there is still time to turn the tables and make the postseason.
"We can't get any lower than last, so now we have to control our own destiny," said Calvano.
The Express visit Surrey tonight, and play host to Merritt on Friday and Prince George on Saturday - both contests start 7 p.m. at the Poirier Sports Centre.