Port Moody Black Panthers keeper Mark Menicucci puts the stop to Aldergrove Kodiaks Samuel Ramsay Dec. 21 at Aldergrove Arena. The game ended in a 5-3 win for the division-leading Kodiaks.

Aldergrove Kodiaks rule hockey conference

The Aldergrove Kodiaks took a 5-3 win over the visiting Port Moody Black Panthers Dec. 21

The Aldergrove Kodiaks took a 5-3 win over the visiting Port Moody Black Panthers Dec. 21 to seal their first place spot in the Harold Brittain conference.

The Kodiaks opened the scoring in the first period with a power play goal by captain Jordan Pughe at 5:24, assisted by Robert Jang and Alex Feighan. The Panthers got theirs on a power play too, at 16:49 to even it up going into the second.

The Kodiaks briefly took the lead again at 8:39, when Brandon Potomak scored with help from Feighan and Joshua Cronin, but the Panthers evened it up again 10 seconds later. Jang scored at 13:48, assisted by Pughe and Stephen Ryan to make it 3-2 for the Kodiaks going into the third.

Potomak scored his second of the night at 4:05 of the third, assisted by Matthew Luongo and Daniel Higgs. The Panthers scored their last of the night on a power play less than two minutes later, and the Kodiaks Daniel Higgs closed the scoring at 10:09, assisted by Rtan Procyshyn and Ryan.

Potomak, Higgs and Ryan earned the game’s first, second and third stars. The Panthers outshot the Kodiaks 45-43 that night.

This puts the Kodiaks at 40 points after 27 games (19-6-1-1), six points ahead of Abbotsford Pilots (16-8-2-0) and 17 ahead of the Panthers (9-14-4-1). Mission and Ridge Meadows trail at nine and eight points, respectively.

Over at the Tom Shaw conference Richmond leads with 46 points, followed by Delta (42), North Delta (34), North Vancouver (25) and Grandview (24).

The Kodiaks travel to Abbotsford Friday night, Dec. 23, for their last game before Christmas break, and return to host their first game of the year on Jan. 4 against the Mission Icebreakers.