The way Robin Brownlee of oilersnation.com sees it, “Edmonton Oilers’ CEO Bob Nicholson will certainly have a rooting interest in the San Jose Sharks when they host the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 7 of their opening-round series Tuesday.” . . . Nicholson is heading up the Oilers’ search for a general manager to replaced the fired Peter Chiarelli. With this in mind, Brownlee and a host of other observers feel that Kelly McCrimmon, the Golden Knights’ assistant general manager, is at or near the top of Nicholson’s list of potential general managers. Should the Golden Knights lost Game 7, one could assume that GM George McPhee would give permission to other organizations, like Edmonton and the expansion Seattle club (Totems?), to chat with McCrimmon. . . . Brownlee’s piece is right here.
From a WHL perspective, one wonders what would happen if McCrimmon were to end up signing on with the Oilers as their general manager. That would, in theory, make him responsible for two WHL teams. He owns the Brandon Wheat Kings; the Oilers own the Edmonton Oil Kings.
Remember the hue and cry a couple of seasons ago when the Prince Albert Raiders traded F Leon Draisaitl, whose NHL rights belonged to the Oilers, to the Kelowna Rockets, whose majority owner, Bruce Hamilton, is the chairman of the WHL’s board of governors and widely seen as the most powerful person in the league? Can you imagine the hullabaloo were McCrimmon to be in Edmonton and a prominent player moved from there to Brandon or vice versa?
That, of course, is a long way from happening, but . . .
Latvia beat Slovakia 2-0 on Monday in a Group B game at the IIHF U-18 World Championship in Ornskoldsvik, Sweden. That improved Latvia’s record to 1-2 and lifted it into the quarter-final round. Prior to this year, Latvia had never placed higher than ninth at this tournament. . . . Slovakia, meanwhile, slipped to 0-4 and will face the loser of today’s game between Finland and Switzerland in the best-of-three relegation round. . . . . In Group A on Monday in Umea, Switzerland gave up a 3-0 lead then came from behind to beat Belarus, 5-4 in OT. Switzerland (1-2) will finish the round-robin today against Finland, while Belarus (2-1-1) is on to the quarter-final round. . . . In other games today, Canada (3-0) will meet Czech Republic (2-1), Russia (2-1) is to play Sweden (2-1), and Team USA (3-0) is to meet Latvia. . . . The tournament concludes on Sunday.
F Reece Henry scored at 5:26 of OT to give the Portage Terriers a 3-2 victory over the visiting Swan Valley Stampeders in Game 7 of the MJHL’s championship series. . . . The Terriers, under GM/head coach Blake Spiller, won the title, and the Turnbull Cup, for the fourth time in five seasons. They have won MJHL championships in 15 seasons. . . . This was the first MJHL final to go seven games since 1996 when the St. James Canadians beat out the Neepawa Natives. . . . Last night, the Stampeders forced extra time when F Matthew Osadick scored his second goal of the game with 7.3 seconds left in the third period. . . . D Sam Huston and F Chase Brakel also scored for the Terriers. . . . They will meet the SJHL-champion Battlefords North Stars for the ANAVET Cup with Games 1 and 2 in Portage la Prairie on Friday and Saturday nights.
Kelvin Cech is the new head coach of the MJHL’s Winkler Flyers. Cech, 36, spent the past three seasons as an assistant coach with the U of British Columbia Thunderbirds. . . . Cech replaces Steve Mullin, whose contract wasn’t renewed when the Flyers’ season ended. . . . In Winkler, Cech, who is from Edmonton, will work alongside general manager Jeff Jeanson.
NOTES: The WHL’s conference finals both resume tonight. . . . In the Eastern Conference final, the Oil Kings will entertain the Prince Albert Raiders. The teams split in Prince Albert, the Raiders opening with a 1-0 victory on Friday, and the Oil Kings coming back with a 4-3 OT victory on Saturday. . . . In the Western Conference, the Vancouver Giants hold a 2-0 lead over the Chiefs as they gather for two games in Spokane. The Giants won 4-1 on Friday and 4-2 on Saturday in Langley, B.C. There has been one key injury in the series as Spokane F Luc Smith, 20, left Game 1 in the opening minutes of the first period with an apparent ankle injury. He didn’t return to that game and wasn’t dressed for Game 2. Will he play tonight?
#Mets legend Ed Kranepool, scheduled for kidney surgery on May 7, jokes that he doesn’t yet know if the organ donor is a Yankees fan or a Mets fan. pic.twitter.com/ZCYC0Gp6zp
Tomas Hertl’s game-winner for the @SanJoseSharks tonight was the first shorthanded OT goal beyond the first OT period in NHL history. It was just the second shorthanded OT goal for a team facing elimination (Fernando Pisani, EDM vs. CAR, Game 5 of 2006 Stanley Cup Final).
F Todd Fiddler (Medicine Hat, Prince Albert, Spokane, Moose Jaw, Prince George, 2009-14) has signed a one-year contract with Neuilly-sur-Marne (France, Division 1). This season, with the Rosetown Red Wings (Allan Cup Hockey West), he had three goals and six assists in 10 games.
OK. The WHL’s Eastern Conference final officially became a series after Game 2. The Edmonton Oil Kings tied the series, 1-1, with a 4-3 OT victory over the Raiders in Prince Albert on Saturday night.
When the game was over, Marc Habscheid, the Raiders’ veteran head coach, pointed out what he felt were some deficiencies in the work of referees Mike Langin and Steve Papp when it came to protecting his goaltender, Ian Scott, from on-rushing Oil Kings.
Brad Lauer, the Oil Kings’ first-year head coach, said his guys need to get to the Prince Albert crease even more than they did in Game 2.
“One thing that concerned me a little bit was it was open season on our goaltender,” Habscheid told reporters. “We depend on the officials to defend our goaltender, because we have no recourse anymore these days. He was getting bumped and stuck and ran all game. We expect them to take care of that and they didn’t. That was real disappointing.”
As for Lauer, he said:
“Their (defencemen) do a really good job getting into (you). They box you out early and they tie you up. We found it really tough in Game 1 to get in front of the net. . . . We had to find ways to get to him and make things difficult for him. We did it a couple times. Did we do it enough? I don’t think so. We need to do more of that and create that second or third opportunity. If we do that, we’ll be okay.”
The Western Conference final also will continue with games on Tuesday and Wednesday nights as the Vancouver Giants take a 2-0 lead over the Chiefs into Spokane. . . . The Chiefs have lost two games in a row for the first time since mid-February when they lost three in a row — 5-4 to the Giants in Langley, B.C., 7-5 to the Tri-City Americans in Kennewick, Wash., and 4-3 in OT to the visiting Kelowna Rockets. . . . After those losses, Spokane closed out the regular season on a 10-2-0 run, then opened the playoffs by going 8-2 before losing twice to the Giants. . . .
A key in this series may well be the status of Spokane F Luc Smith, who left Game 1 early in the first period with an apparent ankle injury. Here’s Kevin Dudley of the Spokane Spokesman-Review after Game 2: “The Chiefs were without forward Luc Smith, who was hurt early in Game 1. (Spokane head coach Dan) Lambert said there is no update and they are waiting for Smith to see the team doctors. Smith was walking with a visible limp outside the Spokane dressing room.”
Upon further review… Dmytriw looks to have broken @WHLGiants playoff record for fastest 2 goals by the same player (0:22) set previously by Bowen Byram who scored twice :45 apart in Game 5 of last year's Vancouver / Victoria series. https://t.co/tIn8eajqQv
Team Canada ran its record to 3-0 at the IIHF U-18 World Championship by whipping Belarus, 11-1, on Sunday in Umea, Sweden. . . . F Dylan Cozens (Lethbridge Hurricanes) led Canada with two goals and three assists, with F Peyton Krebs (Winnipeg Ice) adding a goal and an assist. F Connor Zary (Kamloops Blazers) and D Braden Schneider (Brandon Wheat Kings) each scored once. F Daemon Hunt and F Brayden Tracey, both of the Moose Jaw Warriors, each had an assist. . . . G Nolan Maier (Saskatoon Blades) stopped 41 shots in his first start of the tournament. . . . Belarus now is 2-1. . . . Canada is next scheduled to play on Tuesday against Czech Republic. . . .
In Sunday’s other Group A game, Czech Republic improved to 2-1 with a 4-2 victory over Finland (0-3). . . . In Group B, Team USA went to 3-0 with a 6-3 victory over Russia (2-1), and Sweden went to 2-1 with a 5-1 victory over Slovakia (0-3). . . .
On Monday, Switzerland (0-2) is to meet Belarus in a Group A game, while, in Group B, Latvia (0-2) will meet Slovakia (0-3).
The tournament, in Umea and Ornskoldsvik, Sweden, runs through April 28.
F Roman Horák (Chilliwack, 2009-11) has signed a one-year contract extension with Växjö (Sweden, SHL). This season, he had 15 goals and 18 assists in 50 games.
F Brayden Tracey of the Moose Jaw Warriors scored twice and added an assist on Friday to help Canada to a 7-4 victory over Switzerland at the IIHF U-18 World Championship in Umea, Sweden. . . . The tournament, which runs through April 28, also is being played in Ornskoldsvik. . . . Tracey had scored twice on Thursday as Canada skated to a 5-3 victory over Finland as the tournament began. . . . On Friday, Canada got a goal and an assist from each of F Peyton Krebs (Winnipeg Ice) and F Connor Zary (Kamloops Blazers). F Dylan Cozens (Lethbridge Hurricanes) also scored for Canada. . . . G Taylor Gauthier (Prince George Cougars) stopped 17 shots in his second straight start. . . . Canada led 3-0 and 4-3 by period. . . . Canada will next play on Sunday when it is to meet Belarus.
In other Friday games, Team USA dumped Slovakia, 12-5, behind four goals from each of F Cole Caufield, who has seven in two games, and F Jack Hughes; Sweden beat Latvia, 5-2; and Belarus surprised Finland, 4-3, despite being outshot 29-3 in the third period. F Yegor Buyalski of the Warriors had a goal and an assist for Belarus.
The NCAA has announced a series of rule changes regarding the does and don’ts of recruiting that will impact Division I men’s hockey. . . . Here’s Mike G. Morale of nhl.com: “The new legislation, which will go into effect May 1, calls for no recruiting conversations until Jan. 1 of a player’s sophomore (grade 10) school year, as well as no verbal offers (commitments) made to a player until Aug. 1 before the player’s junior (grade 11) school year. Under the old guidelines, players could initiate communication at any time, and verbal offers could be made anytime.” . . . Morreale’s story is right here.
With the rule changes not kicking in until May 1, there may well be a few young players making verbal commitments between now and then. . . . On Friday, F Tanner Ludtke, a 14-year-old from Elko, Minn., announced via Twitter that he has committed to the U of Nebraska-Omaha and will join the Mavericks for the 2023-24 season. . . . This season, he had 30 goals and 33 assists in 46 games with the Lakeville South bantam AA club. . . .
Meanwhile, F Brett Moravec, 16, has committed to the U of Wisconsin Badgers. Moravec, from Airdrie, Alta., was a fifth-round pick by the Prince Albert Raiders in the WHL’s 2018 bantam draft. This season, he had 13 goals and 23 assists in 32 games with the prep team at the Edge School in Calgary.
The Battlefords North Stars wrapped up the SJHL championship on Friday night, beating the visiting Melfort Mustangs, 7-2. . . . The North Stars won the series and the Canalta Cup, 4-1, and now will meet the MJHL-champion, either the Portage Terriers or the Swan Valley Stampeders, for the ANAVET Cup. The MJHL champion will be decided on Monday when the teams meet in Game 7 in Portage la Prairie. . . . Last night, Battlefords got two goals from each of F Macgregor Sinclair, Quintin Loon-Stewardson and F Braydon Buziak. . . . They also got 32 saves from G Joel Grzybowski.
NOTES: The WHL playoffs resumed on Friday night as each of the conference finals got started. . . .
The Prince Albert Raiders opened the Eastern Conference final at home with a 1-0 victory over the Edmonton Oil Kings, who hadn’t played since eliminating the Calgary Hitmen on April 10. The Raiders won their series with the Saskatoon Blades on April 14. . . .
In the Western Conference, the Vancouver Giants got started with a 4-1 victory over the Spokane Chiefs in Langley, B.C. . . . They’ll play again tonight in Langley. . . . The Giants had been idle since finishing off the Victoria Royals on April 11. The Chiefs eliminated the Everett Silvertips on April 13.
#WHLPlayoffs#PAvsEDM: @PARaidersHockey Ozzy Wiesblatt (4th goal) and Ian Scott (26 saves) combine for what looks to be the first 1-0 playoff victory in franchise history. Wiesblatt scores for the first time since the Red Deer series (3 goals in 4 games).
G Ian Scott recorded the shutout and F Ozzy Wiesblatt scored the game’s only goal as the Prince Albert Raiders opened the Eastern Conference final with a 1-0 victory over the visiting Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . They’ll play Game 2 in Prince Albert tonight. . . . Wiesblatt (4) scored at 1:48 of the second period, his backhand shot bouncing past G Dylan Myskiw after hitting the stick belonging to Edmonton D Wyatt McLeod. . . . Wiesblatt had scored three goals in the Raiders’ first four games of these playoffs; this goal ended a six-game drought. . . . Scott blocked 26 shots, and was superb in a third period in which his guys were outshot 11-3. . . . In these playoffs, Scott is 9-2, 1.64, .934 with two shutouts. . . . Myskiw finished with 23 saves. . . . Edmonton was 0-2 on the PP; Prince Albert was 0-4. . . . The Raiders are 6-0 at home in the playoffs. . . . The Oil Kings went into the game having won their previous four road games. . . . F Cole Fonstad was back in the Raiders’ lineup after missing the last two games of their six-game series victory over the Saskatoon Blades. . . . F Justin Nachbaur of the Raiders sat out as he completed a two-game suspension.
Luc Smith, a @spokanechiefs forward, was just helped off the ice at the @LangleyEvents with an apparent ankle injury. He went directly to the dressing room. He went awkwardly into the boards on a check.
F Owen Hardy scored once and added two assists to lead the Vancouver Giants to a 4-1 victory over the Spokane Chiefs in Langley, B.C. . . . It was Game 1 of the Western Conference final. Game 2 will be played tonight in Langley. . . . The Giants took control with two goals 2:12 apart early in the first period. . . . F Lukas Svejkovsky (4) opened the scoring, on a PP, at 6:25, and F Dawson Holt (3) made it 2-0 at 8:37. . . . Hardy (4) upped the lead to 3-0 just 57 seconds into the second period. . . . The Chiefs got their goal at 5:30 as F Adam Beckman (6) scored. . . . D Bowen Byram (5) put it away for the Giants with an empty-netter at 18:06 of the third period. . . . Vancouver was 1-2 on the PP; Spokane was 0-2. . . . G David Tendeck earned the victory with 30 saves, four more than Spokane’s Bailey Brkin. . . . The Giants continued to play without F Aidan Barfoot, who is out with an undisclosed injury. . . . Spokane F Luc Smith left the game early in the first period after falling into the boards. He didn’t return. If he has to miss any time it will be a big loss for the Chiefs. At 6-foot-4, he’s a big body and as a 20-year-old he brings a lot of experience to their lineup. After being acquired from the Kamloops Blazers this season, he had 20 goals and 14 assists in 42 games. He went into this series with four goals and an assist in 10 games.
TBL (1st in points) vs. CBJ (13) – 13 won 4-0 BOS (3) vs. TOR (7) – 7 up 3-2 WSH (4) vs. CAR (11) – 2-2 NYI (5) vs. PIT (9) – 5 won 4-0
CGY (2) vs. COL (17) – 17 won 4-1 SJS (6) vs. VGK (16) – 16 up 3-2 NSH (8) vs. DAL (15) – 2-2 WPG (10) vs. STL (12) – 12 up 3-2
Western Financial Place, the home of the WHL’s Kootenay Ice, is expected to open its doors this morning after it was closed Wednesday morning when ammonia was detected in the room that houses its ice plant.
Cranbrook Fire and Emergency Services arrived on scene after an automatic alarm went off at 9 a.m.
Scott Driver, the acting director of CFES told Summit 107, a Cranbrook radio station: “The ammonia plant in the building is where the detection alarm went off. So we all responded according to our City’s Ammonia Alarm Plan and everything seems to be going as planned . . . we’re hopeful that the building will be up and running soon.”
The building was evacuated and there weren’t any reports of injuries.
Refrigeration technicians, who are based in Alberta, were called and arrived on Wednesday afternoon. According to the City, they “were able to safely resolve the ammonia leak early Wednesday evening.”
You can bet there is a heightened awareness about this type of thing after three men were killed when an ammonia leak in Memorial Arena in Fernie, B.C., killed three men on Oct, 17. 2017.
The Ice, which will relocate to Winnipeg once its regular season ends on March 17, is scheduled to play at home on Friday and Saturday nights, against the Swift Current Broncos and Calgary Hitmen, respectively.
On Saturday night, the Ice is scheduled to honour former captain Jarret Stoll by making him the first inductee into its Hall of Fame. If you’re new here, yes, the organization is opening a hall of fame on its way out of Cranbrook.
Connor Dewar and Dawson Butt are cleared for this weekend against Tri-Ciru according to @WHLsilvertips general manager Garry Davidson.
The Spokane Chiefs have signed F Reed Jacobson to a WHL contract. Jacobson, 16, was a sixth-round selection in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. From Swift Current, the 5-foot-9, 160-pounder plays for the Swift Current Legionnaires of the Saskatchewan Midget AAA Hockey League. This season, he put 26 goals and 29 assists in 44 regular-season games. . . . In 2017-18, he had 14 goals and 14 assists in 41 games as a freshman with the Legionnaires.
The junior B Delisle Chiefs of the Prairie Junior Hockey League are having a pretty good season. They finished the regular season at 38-1-1, tying the league record for most victories in a 40-game season. The 2015-16 Saskatoon Quakers finished 38-2-0. . . . The Chiefs’ 77 points also broke the PJHL record for points in a season (76) that had been set by the 2015-16 Quakers.
Feel free to click on the DONATE button over there on the right. Thank you, in advance.
F Carson Focht scored four times and F Kaden Elder added three goals of his own as the host Calgary Hitmen dumped the Swift Current Broncos, 9-3. . . . Calgary (32-22-6) has points in three straight (2-0-1). It is third in the Central Division, six points behind the Lethbridge Hurricanes and three in front of the Medicine Hat Tigers and Red Deer Rebels. . . . Swift Currrent (10-44-5) has lost 12 in a row (0-10-2). . . . This game started at noon as it was Calgary’s third annual Telus Be Brave Anti-Bullying game. . . . The Broncos had taken part in the Edmonton’s Hockey Game on Tuesday, with the Oil Kings winning, 11-1. . . . On Wednesday, Focht made it 1-0 at 4:06 of the first period, and Broncos F Carter Chorney (13) tied it at 5:05. . . . The Hitmen then went ahead 3-1 on goals from Elder, at 6:59, and Focht, at 14:11. . . . D Connor Horning (7) got the Broncos back to within a goal at 17:50. . . . Calgary broke it open with four straight second-period goals, in a span of 6:57. . . . Focht scored 29 seconds into the period, with Elder counting at 2:46, F Luke Coleman (20) scoring at 3:47, and F James Malm (27), at 7:26. . . . Elder (27) and Focht (20) rounded out Calgary’s scoring with third-period PP goals. . . . F Matthew Culling (9) had the Broncos’ other goal. . . . Focht enjoyed the first four-goal game of his WHL career. He has 52 points, including 32 assists, in 60 games this season. . . . Elder, who was acquired from the Broncos on Sept. 27, for a third-round pick in the 2019 bantam draft, recorded his first hat trick. He has 56 points, 29 of them assists, in 61 games. . . . Calgary F Josh Prokop recorded four assists, giving him his first WHL four-point outing. He has 24 points, 18 of them assists, in 57 games. . . . The Hitmen also got three assists from D Vladislav Yeryomenko, while Malm added two assists to his goal. . . . Chorney had three points for the Broncos, as he also had two assists. . . . Calgary enjoyed a 32-14 edge in shots on goal. . . . The announced attendance was 15,084. . . . Calgary F Mark Kastelic completed his two-game suspension by sitting out this one. . . . The Hitmen list F Hunter Campbell and F Jake Kryski as being out indefinitely, with F Cael Zimmerman out week-to-week.
#WHL LET/PA: @WHLHurricanes Jake Elmer becomes first player since A. Heponiemi and T. Ronning had concurrent 11-game goal streaks in Oct. / Nov. 2017 to hit double-digits of consecutive games with a goal. Equals game and wins it in overtime :20 in. Fastest since 11/20/16, Wong
F Jake Elmer ran his goal-scoring streak to 10 games as he scored the last two goals to give the Lethbridge Hurricanes a 5-4 OT victory over the Raiders in Prince Albert. . . . Lethbridge (33-18-10) is second in the Central Division, two points behind the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Prince Albert (49-8-4) has points in four straight (3-0-1). It leads the overall standings by 14 points over the Everett Silvertips, who have eight games remaining. . . . Elmer, who also had an assist, tied the game 4-4 at 17:43 of the third period, then he won it 20 seconds into OT with his 34th goal of the season. . . . His 10-game goal streak is the longest in the WHL this season. The record? F Cliff Ronning of the New Westminster scored 27 goals in an 18-game run from Nov. 6 through Dec. 15, 1984. . . .Lethbridge opened a 2-0 lead on first-period goals from F Dylan Cozens, at 11:09, and F Logan Barlage (15), at 11:22. . . . The Raiders tied it on PP goals from F Cole Fonstad (28), at 15:03 of the first, and F Justin Nachbaur (16), at 3:37 of the second. . . . Cozens (30) put the visitors back in front at 4:48. . . . F Spencer Moe (8) got the Raiders even at 11:56, and D Kaiden Guhle (3) gave the home boys the lead at 10:45 of the third. . . . All that did was set the stage for Elmer’s heroics. . . . . The Raiders were 2-5 on the PP; the Hurricanes were 0-5. . . . Cozens added an assist to his two goals. . . . Fonstad also had three points as he added a pair of assists to his goal. . . . G Carl Tetachuk stopped 25 shots for the Hurricanes, two more than Ian Scott of the Raiders. . . . F Parker Kelly of the Raiders began serving a three-game suspension by missing this one. . . . F Evan Herman, who signed with the Raiders on Tuesday, made his WHL debut.
#WHL RD/REG: A pair of goals for @Rebelshockey Ethan Sakowich who doubles goal total on the season paces the team to the "W". 3 goals in the last 3 games after registering 4 in first 194 career games. Team improves back to ,500 (3-3) in games that he scores.
The Red Deer Rebels broke open a 1-1 game with three straight goals en route to a 5-2 victory over the Pats in Regina. . . . Red Deer (31-24-5) has won two straight after ending a five-game skid. It is tied with the Medicine Hat Tigers for the Eastern Conference’s two wild-card spots, two points ahead of the Brandon Wheat Kings. . . . Regina (18-40-3) has lost two in a row. It has lost 40 times in regulation time for the first time since 2004-05. . . . D Alex Alexeyev (10) gave the Rebels a 1-0 lead at 10:28 of the first period. . . . Regina tied it at 14:46 on a goal by F Cole Dubinsky (4). . . . Red Deer D Ethan Sakowich scored his third and fourth goals, at 19:18 of the first period and 0:55 of the second for a 3-1 lead, and F Brett Davis upped it to 4-1 at 6:03. . . . D Brady Pouteau (5) scored a PP goal for Regina at 16:45 of the third period. . . . Rebels F Brandon Hagel (37) got the empty-netter at 17:50. . . . G Ethan Anders stopped 32 shots to earn the victory over Max Paddock, who made 22 saves.
#WHL TC/KAM: @blazerhockey Orrin Centazzo racks up both markers in squeaking out in the 1-goal win and matches career total goals coming into the season with 15. Fifth time registering 2 goals this campaign and 2nd against Tri-City. All 6 goals in 2019 have been on home ice.
F Orrin Centazzo scored twice to help the Kamloops Blazers beat the visiting Tri-City Americans, 2-1. . . . Kamloops (23-29-6) had lost its previous two games (0-1-1). It is three points behind the Seattle Thunderbirds, who hold down the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot. The Thunderbirds are scheduled to play in Kamloops on Friday. . . . The Blazers also are fourth in the B.C. Division, five points behind the Kelowna Rockets. . . . Tri-City (33-23-3) has lost two in a row. It holds down the Western Conference’s first wild-card spot and is fourth in the U.S. Division, four points behind the Spokane Chiefs. . . . Centazzo, who has 15 goals, scored on a PP at 5:44 of the first period, then made it 2-0 at 2:55 of the second. . . . The Americans cut into the lead when F Sasha Mutala (17) scored, on a PP, at 15:48. . . . The Blazers got 25 saves from G Dylan Ferguson, who continued his fine play. He had to be good in this one, though, because Tri-City G Beck Warm, who has started 53 of his club’s 58 games, played as fine a game as these old eyes have seen in some time. A left toe save on Kamloops F Jermaine Loewen late in the second period was the kind that can provide a shooter with a month’s worth of nightmares. . . . Warm finished with 43 stops. . . . Warm leads WHL goaltenders in games played (55), minutes played (3,251) and saves (1,716). He is 31-21-2, 2.86, .917. . . . F Blake Stevenson, who turned 18 on Jan. 12, was back in Tri-City’s lineup after not playing since Jan. 8. A freshman from Calgary, he has eight goals and six assists in 32 games.
Announced attendance: 3,407. 2,000 may be generous for the actual crowd tonight. #Kamloops#WHL
F Jaret Anderson-Dolan scored twice and added three assists to lead the visiting Spokane Chiefs to a 7-1 victory over the Prince George Cougars. . . . Spokane (33-19-7) has points in four straight (3-0-1). The Chiefs clinched a playoff spot with the victory. They are third in the U.S. Division, four points ahead of the Tri-City Americans. . . . Prince George (17-37-8) has lost three in a row (0-2-1). This loss eliminated the Cougars from the playoff chase — they have six games remaining and are 13 points in arrears of the Seattle Thunderbirds, who hold the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot. . . . The Cougars also have lost a club record 12 straight home games. . . . The Chiefs had beaten the host Cougars, 4-3 in OT, on Tuesday night with Anderson-Dolan scoring the winner at 3:58 of extra time. . . . The Cougars are 1-7-2 since general manager Mark Lamb went behind the bench in place of fired head coach Richard Matvichuk. . . . Spokane took control of this one with four first-period goals, from F Luke Toporowski (18), at 0:18; D Bobby Russell (5), at 9:04; F Connor Gabruch (3), at 16:59; and D Nolan Reid (14), shorthanded, at 19:28. . . . F Josh Maser (26) scored, on a PP, for the Cougars just 24 seconds into the second period. . . . Spokane answered that with two PP goals from Anderson-Dolan, who has 12 goals this season, and one from F Luc Smith (27). . . . Anderson-Dolan, who missed a chunk of the early season with a broken wrist, has 31 points in 24 games. . . . Spokane was 2-6 on the PP; Prince George was 1-8. . . . Anderson-Dolan had his second career five-point game; this was the sixth time he has had at least four points in a game. . . . Smith added two assists to his goal, with D Ty Smith helping out with three assists. . . .G Bailey Brkin earned the victory with 27 saves. . . . The Cougars were able to dress only 16 skaters. F Ethan Browne and D Cole Moberg, both of whom are injured, were scratched, as was D Ryan Schoettler (flu).
Correct. This is new this season, with the goal of creating a more intimate, exciting fan experience! https://t.co/j68VEkx01n
F Garrett Mitchell (Regina, 2006-11) has signed a contract for the rest of this season with Zvolen (Slovakia, Extraliga). Last season, with the Hershey Bears (AHL), he had seven goals and one assist in 47 games. He was the Bears’ team captain.
The Kamloops Blazers’ new braintrust waited until the regular-season was one-third done before acting.
On Monday, the Blazers moved out two veterans — F Luc Smith and D Nolan Kneen — in exchange for two players and four selections in the WHL’s 2020 bantam draft.
Smith, 20, was dealt to the Spokane Chiefs for F/D Jeff Faith, 20, a third-round selection and one in the sixth round.
Kneen, 19, went to the Saskatoon Blades for D Jackson Caller, 19, who is from Kamloops, a second-round pick and a third-rounder. The second-rounder was acquired by the Blades from the Regina Pats on Jan. 10, while the third-rounder originated with Kelowna, moving to Saskatoon on Oct. 11 in a deal that had F Michael Farren go to the Rockets.
Interestingly, the Blades are scheduled to visit the Blazers on Friday night.
The Blazers traded away two players with 12 goals and 27 assists between them, getting three goals in exchange.
Obviously, this trade wasn’t made for this season, nor was it made because general manager Matt Bardsley is infatuated with either Faith or Caller. Bardsley replaced the displaced Stu MacGregor — he now scouts for the NHL’s Dallas Stars, who are owned by Blazers’ majority owner Tom Gaglardi — on June 1. And, 22 games into this season, Bardsley has seen enough.
Still, Bardsley is adamant that he hasn’t given up on this season.
“I’m not suggesting that we’re selling,” Bardsley told Marty Hastings of Kamloops This Week for a story that is right here. “I don’t believe we’re selling. Some people are probably going to look at it like we are.
“We’re a bit inconsistent, not so much in how we play, I guess a little bit, but also just with where we’re at. I just felt for the organization it was time to make a change.”
As of now, according to Alan Caldwell, who tracks these things right here, the Blazers hold two firsts and two fourths in the 2019 draft, and they have two seconds and three thirds in 2020. In 2019, they hold Everett’s first- and fourth-round selections. In 2020, the Blazers have Regina’s second-rounder, and third-round picks that originated with Kelowna and Spokane.
At the same time, Bardsley and head coach Serge Lajoie, who also is in his first season with Kamloops, are trying to figure out this edition of the Blazers, a team that is 2-6-1 on home ice and 7-5-0 on the road.
Still, at 9-11-1, the Blazers are only three points out of third place in the B.C. Division and three points shy of the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot.
“I believe we should be further up in the standings,” Bardsley told Hastings. “I’d like to see our team more consistent in how we play night in and night out.
“I wanted to address it now, rather than wait to closer to the deadline. By that time, we might have a better feel about where we’re at. I want to correct it and we still give ourselves time to do anymore changes. If we need to add or whatever, then we can do that, as well.”
The 6-foot-5, 210-pound Smith is from Stony Plain, Alta. He was a third-round selection by Regina in the 2013 bantam draft. In 270 regular-season WHL games, he has 47 goals and 53 assists. This season, he has eight goals and 11 assists in 22 games. Last season, he had career highs in goals (21) and assists (23) in 62 games.
Smith will bring some offence and a lot of physical play to the Chiefs’ forward ranks, especially on the forecheck.
Faith, 6-foot-4 and 200 pounds, is from Wilcox, Sask., and has played his entire career with the Chiefs, who picked him in the first round of the 2013 bantam draft. This season, he has one goal in 24 games. Last season, he had five goals and 12 assists, both career highs, in 60 games. A defenceman by trade, he has been playing up front this season.
The Blazers selected Kneen, who is from Kelowna, with the third overall pick of the 2014 bantam draft; that is the earliest selection they have made in the draft’s history. The 6-foot-0, 190-pounder is off to a fine start this season, with four goals and 16 assists in 22 games, after finishing last season with seven goals and 30 assists in 68 games.
This season, Kneen’s 20 points have him eighth among all WHL defencemen. In Saskatoon, he will be reunited with D Dawson Davidson, with whom he partnered at times in Kamloops. Davidson has 26 points, leaving him fourth among defencemen.
Kneen should be in the Blades’ lineup tonight as they meet the Vancouver Giants in Langley, B.C. The Blades are scheduled to play in Victoria on Wednesday, before heading for Kamloops and Friday’s engagement.
Caller, 6-foot-2 and 190 pounds, was a seventh-round pick by the Portland Winterhawks in the 2014 bantam draft. He was in his third full season with the Blades; in 157 games, he had five goals and 27 assists. This season, he had two goals in 20 games.
“There’s always a significant price to pay to add a top-end 19-year-old, but we still have Regina’s first, Swift’s second and our third-round picks in 2020, so we feel we had the assets to make a deal like this happen,” Blades GM Colin Priestner said in a news release.
The Tri-City Americans have acquired D Aaron Hyman, 20, from the Regina Pats for F Brett Clayton, 20, and a third-round selection in the WHL’s 2019 bantam draft.
Hyman had five goals and 19 assists in 25 games with the Pats this season. A 6-foot-5, 220-pound Calgarian, he was a third-round pick by the Calgary Hitmen in the 2013 bantam draft. The Hitmen dealt him to the Seattle Thunderbirds, and he helped them win the Ed Chynoweth Cup in the spring of 2017. Seattle traded him to Regina last season and he played in the Memorial Cup with the Pats, who were the host team.
In 189 career regular-season games, Hyman has 11 goals and 45 assists.
Hyman could make his Tri-City debut tonight against the visiting Prince George Cougars.
Clayton, from Abbotsford, B.C., was picked by the Saskatoon Blades in the 10th round of the 2013 bantam draft. In 163 regular-season games, he has nine goals and 21 assists.
The Pats next play Friday when they travel to Brandon to face the Wheat Kings.
The Americans also placed D Anthony Bishop, 20, on waivers.
Bishop played Saturday night for the first time since Sept. 22. His return left the Americans with four 20-year-olds, one more than the mandated maximum.
Bishop has two goals and 23 assists in 174 career regular-season games.
By putting him on waivers, the Americans are left with Hyman, F Nolan Yaremko and F Parker AuCoin as their 20s.
The Pats’ three 20s now are Clayton, D Brady Pouteau and D Liam Schioler.
After Daniel Carcillo’s stirring weekend tweets detailing the bullying and hazing to which he was subjected during his freshman season with the OHL’s Sarnia Sting, John Chidley-Hill of The Canadian Press did a deep dive into the story. Thankfully, this kind of stuff doesn’t happen a whole lot these days, but it used to be pretty standard behaviour, at least in junior hockey. . . . Chidley-Hill’s story is right here and it’s well worth your time.
D Gianni Fairbrother of the Everett Silvertips has drawn a two-game suspension after taking a headshot major and game misconduct during a 2-1 victory over the visiting Kelowna Rockets on Saturday night. . . . The penalty came after a hit on Kelowna F Kyle Crosbie. . . . Fairbrother sat out Sunday’s 5-3 victory over the Winterhawks in Portland and will miss Wednesday’s rematch in Everett.
The Vancouver Giants have dropped F Tyler Ho, 18, from their roster, and he is expected to join the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers. Ho, who is from North Vancouver, had one goal and one assist in 12 games with the Giants this season. . . . Ho was a third-round selection by the Prince George Cougars in the 2015 WHL bantam draft. In 76 regular-season games, he has two goals and 10 assists. Last season, he had one goal and eight assists in 57 games with the Giants.
If you stop off here and enjoy what you see — or even if you don’t — feel free to click on the DONATE button over there on the right and make a contribution. Thanks in advance.
Just saw the Dickenson rant where he moaned about penalties and appeared to refer to Oshea as a F’ing Cdn. Dickenson and the Stampeders owe an apology to OShea, the Bombers and everybody who cares about the CFL.
It won’t be long until the Oakland Raiders are at their new home in Las Vegas. As Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle noted: “Usually when a high-rolling loser comes to Vegas, the casinos set him up with a comp hotel room. With (owner Mark) Davis, they’re giving him a comp stadium.”
Headline at The Onion (@TheOnion): Sarah Huckabee Sanders Denies Doctoring Footage Showing Jim Acosta in Clown Makeup Blowing Up Gotham Hospital.
I don't get why so many bantam followers are surprised the CSSHL dominates the Club Teams in tournaments. It is basically now Div 1, Div 2 and Div 3 in bantam hockey. The real job scouts are going to have is determining how the diamonds in the rough are from Club hockey!
After word got out that President Trump was to award the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Babe Ruth and Elvis Presley, comedian Argus Hamilton noted: “It was a brilliant move. Trump finally figured out a way to get a sports champion and a member of the entertainment industry not to refuse an invitation to the White House.”
The ex-husband of a good friend died recently. Here’s a line from his obit: “If you wish to honour Rod, boycott Trump by avoiding a trip into the United States. Now that would make him happy.” . . . They — he and his ex, not he and Trump — were friends until the end.
Headline at Deadspin: Most annoying Warriors player says he and second-most annoying Warriors player are cool now.
From an anonymous friend – "What if we could mobilize 15,000 golf caddies and send them to CA to rake forest floors with their sand-trap rakes? Anyone know someone who owns a bunch of golf courses?"
“Supporters of Rijnsburgse Boys, a soccer team in the Netherlands, hired a porn star named Foxy to run in nothing but shoes and socks across the field to unnerve rival Amsterdamsche FC players, but it didn’t work as first-place AFC breezed to a 6-2 win,” reports Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times. “Now that’s what you call a losing streak.”
There was a report the other day that American CEOs earn 312 times what the average worker takes home. To which Brad Rock of the Deseret News in Salt Lake City wrote: “Latrell Sprewell’s first thought: ‘Hey. They got families to feed.’ ”
The best sit-down/stand-up comedy act in the NHL? That’s easy . . . it’s the play-by-play team of Jack Edwards and Andy Brickley, who give you the most-slanted coverage of an NHL team (Boston Bruins) that you can imagine. . . . Go in knowing what you are going to hear and the whining and whimpering becomes hilarious.
Congratulations to Evan Hammond on calling his 1,000th Bulldog Game last night!
Slava Malamud, aka Twitter’s official Russian sports writer, tweeted this the other day, and it’s impossible to disagree with his premise: “Do any fans, ever, in the history of life, look forward to between-the-periods player interviews? Do you learn anything from them? Are they in any way whatsoever needed at all?”
When will young coaches learn that coaching is about teaching and showing guidance and leadership. Watched a couple of coaches in Med Hat this weekend that really need to figure it out. Constant swearing. Dramatics. Questioning a refs manhood? #bebetter@AMBHL2018
The owner of Benshot, a Wisconsin company, chose to offer handguns to its 16 employees as Christmas presents because they are “kind of fun and exciting gifts.” . . . Janice Hough, aka The Left Coast Sports Babe, offered: “And you thought your office Christmas party got out of control after people get drunk and argumentative.”
Ever wonder what the late Howard Cosell would have thought of today’s sports-media landscape? “He would hate social media,” said Al Michaels, NBC-TV’s top football play-by-play man. “He would hate talk radio. . . . He would describe it as a ‘cacophony of crap.’ ”
Austyn Playfair spent three seasons (2014-17) in the WHL, playing for the Tri-City Americans, while dreaming of following his father Jim’s path to the NHL. However, a shoulder injury derailed those plans and he ultimately left hockey and jumped into the world of fashion design. . . . Audrey Lim of dailyhive.com has that story right here.
The OHL’s Saginaw Spirit fired head coach Troy Smith on Sunday, replacing him with associate coach Chris Lazary. The Spirit is 11-9-2, after losing twice on the weekend — 5-2 to the Rangers in Kitchener on Friday and 5-1 to the visiting Windsor Spitfires on Saturday. Saginaw is tied for second with Windsor (11-10-2) in the five-team West Division, six points behind the Soo Greyhounds. . . . Smith was in his second season as the Spirit’s head coach.
If you stop off here and enjoy what you see — or even if you don’t — feel free to click on the DONATE button over there on the right and make a contribution. Thanks in advance.
F Ryan Peckford scored four goals and added an assist to lead the Moose Jaw Warriors to a 9-1 victory over the Kootenay Ice in Cranbrook, B.C. . . . The Warriors (10-5-4) have points in five straight (4-0-1). . . . The Ice (7-14-4) has lost three in a row (0-2-1). . . . The Ice went 0-2-1 in playing three games in fewer than 48 hours. Kootenay lost 5-0 to the visiting Calgary Hitmen on Friday night, then dropped a 5-4 OT decision to the Rebels in Red Deer on Saturday. . . . On Sunday, the Warriors scored the game’s first four goals as they took a 4-0 lead on Peckford’s second goal of the game at 12:17 of the opening period. . . . He added his third and fourth goals at 5:05 and 10:56 of the second period. . . . Peckford went into the game with four goals this season and came out with eight. This was his first four-goal game and second five-point outing; he had a six-pointer (one goal and five assists) while with the Victoria Royals in 2016-17. A 19-year-old from Stony Plain, Alta., who was acquired last season from the Royals, Peckford now has eight goals and eight assists in 18 games. . . . F Tyler Smithies added his first two goals and an assist for the Warriors. He went into the day with one goal in 54 career regular-season games. . . . The Ice’s goal came from F Owen Pederson, who has goals in two straight games since being brought in Saturday from OHA-Edmonton’s prep team. . . . Moose Jaw had a 43-20 edge in shots. . . . The Ice scratched F Peyton Krebs, while the Warriors remain without F Justin Almeida.
F Zane Franklin scored once and added four assists to lead the Kamloops Blazers to a 7-3 victory over the Cougars in Prince George. . . . The Blazers (8-9-2) have won two in a row. On Saturday night, they beat the host Cougars, 5-1. . . . Prince George (9-10-3) has lost two straight. . . . The Blazers have won their last eight games in Prince George. . . . Franklin, an off-season acquisition from the Lethbridge Hurricanes, assisted on four of the Blazers’ first five goals as they took a 5-0 lead before the second period was 14 minutes old. . . . Franklin, 19, had never had a four- or five-point game in 155 regular-season outings prior to this one. He had three three-point games to his credit. Franklin now has 14 goals and 11 assists in 19 games. He finished last season with 14 goals and 24 assists in 67 games. . . . The Blazers were 2-3 on the PP and also had a shorthanded goal. The Cougars went 1-9 on the PP. . . . F Orrin Centazzo and F Luc Smith each had two goals and an assist for the Blazers, with D Nolan Kneen and D Luke Zazula each recording three assists for the Blazers. Smith has eight goals, while Centazzo has four.
The Victoria Royals scored the game’s last three goals as they skated to a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Giants in Langley, B.C. . . . Victoria (12-6-0) has won two in a row. This was the Royals’ fifth road game of the season; they are 3-2-0. . . . The Giants (14-6-2) have lost two straight. . . . D Dylan Plouffe (2) gave Vancouver a 1-0 lead at 5:03 of the first period. . . . F Logan Doust (1) got Victoria into a tie at 7:43, and F D-Jay Jerome (11) broke the tie at 13:12. . . . F Dino Kambeitz (4) added insurance with a shorthanded empty-netter at 19:47 of the third. . . . Doust, who notched his first WHL point, is from North Vancouver. . . . The Giants had been 9-0-0 when scoring the game’s first goal. . . . The Royals got 28 saves from G Griffen Outhouse as he posted his 98th career regular-season victory. . . . Vancouver’s Trent Miner stopped 22 shots. . . . Outhouse made his 165th appearance, which tied Coleman Vollrath’s franchise record (2012-16) for most appearances by a goaltender.
F Riley Woods scored three times to lead the Spokane Chiefs to a 3-2 OT victory over the host Everett Silvertips. . . . Spokane now is 12-8-3, with Everett at 16-7-1. . . . Woods, who has 18 goals, opened the scoring with two PP goals — at 6:24 and 8:42 of the first period. . . . Everett pulled even on goals from D Wyatte Wylie (5), on a PP, at 11:15 of the first, and F Dawson Butt (5) at 6:00 of the second. . . . Woods won it at 2:27 of the extra period as he completed his first WHL hat trick. . . . Woods, who was acquired from the Regina Pats during 2016-17, has 18 goals and 15 assists in 23 games. Last season, the 20-year-old from Regina finished with 25 goals and 32 assists in 72 games. . . . G Bailey Brkin stopped 38 shots and picked up an assist on the game’s first goal for Spokane. . . . D Ty Smith had two assists for the Chiefs; he’s got three goals and 28 assists in 20 games. . . . For the second straight weekend, Everett played three games in fewer than 48 hours. After going 3-0-0 the first time, the Silvertips were 1-1-1 this time. . . . The Chiefs also went three times in fewer than 48 hours this weekend, finishing 2-1-0.
The WHL came under fire from two former players who appeared in front of Oregon’s Senate Committee on Workforce on Tuesday, reports TSN’s Rick Westhead. The Portland Winterhawks are seeking an exemption from the state’s minimum wage legislation. At a hearing on that subject, former WHL players Tyler Maxwell and James McEwan argued, according to Westhead, that “the WHL is a professional league and its teams are for-profit businesses.” . . . Maxwell played four seasons (2008-12) in the WHL, the first three-plus with the Everett Silvertips and the last 47 games with the Edmonton Oil Kings. . . . Maxwell, Westhead wrote, told the committee “that he was given excellent school grades in exchange for autographed pucks, and was refused an X-ray for days and forced to play in games after breaking a kneecap.” . . . Maxwell said he played with the injury for seven games. “I was still scoring so they didn’t care what shape I was in,” he said. . . . As for McEwan, according to Westhead, he testified “that he has navigated bankruptcy and battled depression without the support of his former teams or the WHL.” McEwan played two seasons each with the Kelowna Rockets and Seattle Thunderbirds, fighting at least 72 times over four seasons (2004-08). . . . Ron Robison, the WHL commissioner, informed the Oregon State Senate via letter that it is reviewing “the statements with the WHL clubs concerned.”
Other than a 20-minute delay at one point, the Vancouver Giants made it over the Coquihalla Highway to Kamloops in good shape on Friday.
But shortly after they arrived at the Sandman Centre, the Highway from Hell was shut down in both directions due to an accident.
Then, early in the first period of the Giants’ game with the Blazers, came word that the highway likely wouldn’t be open again until at least midnight.
During the warmup and the early minutes of the first period, Derek Holloway, the Giants’ bus driver, was glued to his phone and also getting highway updates from a friendly blogger seated next to him. Holloway also was in close contact with Giants general manager Glen Hanlon, who hadn’t travelled with the team.
The highway has been closed on numerous occasions of late due to accidents, and upon hearing that it wasn’t likely to reopen before midnight, Hanlon quickly gave Holloway the OK to park the bus and for the Giants to spend the night in a hotel.
The Giants and Blazers will both be on the Coquihalla today, though, as they are scheduled to play in Langley tonight.
F Liam Stewart, who played four seasons with the Spokane Chiefs, has had his 2017-18 ended by a concussion. The 23-year-old Stewart, who has been playing for the Guildford Flames of the Elite Ice Hockey League, had been sidelined for almost two months due to the brain injury. He posted on Twitter that he “tried coming back against Sheffield but the symptoms came right back.” . . . The result, he wrote, is that “I’ve decided to do what’s best for my health and well-being and hang up my skates for the rest of the season.” . . . He had 12 goals and 11 assists in 35 games with the Flames. . . . Stewart’s decision means that he won’t be playing for Great Britain at the IIHF World Chamionship, Division 1 Group A, in Budapest, Hungary, April 22-28.
Stan Butler, the head coach of the North Bay Battalion, joined the OHL’s 700-victory club on Friday with a 2-1 victory over the host Mississauga Steelheads. . . . Butler has 630 victories with the Battalion (Brampton and North Bay) and 70 with the Oshawa Generals. He also spent one season in the WHL, with the Prince George Cougars, winning 28 games in 1996-97.
IF THE PLAYOFFS OPENED TODAY …
Prince Albert at Moose Jaw
Regina at Medicine Hat
Brandon at Swift Current
Red Deer at Lethbridge
Seattle at Everett
Tri-City at Kelowna
Spokane at Portland
Vancouver at Victoria
At Swift Current, the Prince Albert Raiders scored twice in a shootout to beat the Broncos, 5-4. . . . Prince Albert (28-25-11) has won five straight and now holds down the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card spot, two points ahead of Saskatoon. . . . Swift Current (45-14-6) has points in three straight (2-0-1). It is second in the overall standings, one point behind Moose Jaw. . . . The Broncos actually led this one 4-1 midway through the second period. . . . The home side took a 2-0 first-period lead on goals from F Kaden Elder (14), on a PP, at 3:49, and F Giorgio Estephan, at 14:45. . . . D Sergio Sapego (3) got the visitors on the scoreboard at 4:07 of the second period. . . . The Broncos took a 4-1 lead right after that, on goals from F Matteo Gennaro (39), at 5:38, and Estephan (30) at 6:52. . . . D Brayden Pachal (5) cut the Prince Albert deficit to a pair at 13:36. . . . The Raiders tied it on third-period goals from D Vojtech Budik (12), on a PP, at 16:29, and F Jordy Stallard (41), at 18:54, with the extra attacker on the ice. . . . Gennaro scored in the shootout to give the Broncos a 1-0 lead, but the Raiders won it on goals from F Regan Nagy and F Parker Kelly. . . . Stallard added two assists to his goal for the Raiders, with F Cole Fonstad also getting two assists and Sapego one. . . . F Aleksi Heponiemi had two assists for the Broncos, with Gennaro getting one. . . . Prince Albert was 2-6 on the PP; Swift Current was 1-5. . . . G Ian Scott started for the Raiders, but he left after giving up three goals on 13 shots in 25:38. Curtis Meger finished up by stopping 22 of 23 shots in 38:21. . . . G Stuart Skinner made 34 saves for the Broncos. . . . Announced attendance: 2,890.
At Saskatoon, F Jake Elmer scored the game’s last two goals as the Lethbridge Hurricanes beat the Blades, 5-3. . . . Lethbridge (32-25-6) has won three straight. It is second in the Central Division, two points behind Medicine Hat. . . . Saskatoon (31-30-3) has lost three in a row. It is two points from a playoff spot. . . . F Braylon Shmyr (34) gave the Blades a 1-0 lead at 9:58 of the first period. . . . F Taylor Ross, who now has 20 goals, scored two second-period goals, at 0:49 and 2:11, to give Lethbridge a 2-1 edge. . . . F Bradly Goethals (15) got Saskatoon back even at 9:42. . . . F Jordy Bellerive (44) scored shorthanded at 7:32 of the third period to put the Hurricanes ahead. . . . F Eric Florchuk (14) got the Blades back into a tie at 10:26. . . . Elmer snapped the tie at 14:11, then added an empty-netter at 18:51. He now has 17 goals. . . . The Hurricanes got two assists from D Calen Addison, with Elmer and Bellerive adding one each. . . . Goethals added an assist to his goal. . . . Lethbridge was 1-3 on the PP; Saskatoon was 0-6. . . . G Logan Flodell stopped 43 shots to earn the victory. . . . The Blades got 27 stops from G Nolan Maier. . . . D Dawson Davidson was back in Saskatoon’s lineup after a brief absence. . . . Announced attendance: 3,988.
At Brandon, F Ty Lewis scored three times to lead the Wheat Kings to a 4-2 victory over the Moose Jaw Warriors. . . . Brandon (34-25-5) moved into third in the East Division, one point ahead of Regina. . . . Moose Jaw (47-14-3) leads the overall standings, by one point over Swift Current. . . . Lewis opened the scoring, on a PP, at 7:48 of the first period. . . . F Stelio Mattheos (38), who assisted on that first goal, made it 2-0 at 11:33. . . . Lewis added his second goal at 14:51. . . . F Barrett Sheen (5) scored for Moose Jaw at 15:30 of the first and F Justin Almeida (37) got the visitors to within a goal, on a PP, at 9:35 of the third. . . . Lewis completed his hat trick at 12:49. He’s got 39 goals. He also has seven goals over his past three games. . . . Brandon was 1-2 on the PP; Moose Jaw was 1-5. . . . G Logan Thompson was outstanding for Brandon, with 41 saves. . . . G Brody Willms was beaten twice on six shots in 11:33, before he was replaced by Adam Evanoff, who went 46:39 and turned aside 13 of 15 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 3,656.
At Edmonton, F Colton Kehler scored 18 seconds into OT to give the Oil Kings a 4-3 victor over the Calgary Hitmen. . . . Edmonton (19-37-8) had lost its previous five games (0-4-1). It is last in the Eastern Conference, one point behind Calgary. . . . Calgary (19-35-9) has lost four straight (0-2-2). . . . Calgary led this one 3-0 in the second period. . . . F Zach Huber (1) got it started at 11:16 of the first period. The Hitmen then got second-period goals from F Jake Kryski (15), at 1:20, and F Jakob Stukel (32), at 4:25. . . . Edmonton F Trey Fix-Wolansky (28) got the comeback started, shorthanded, at 9:09 of the second. . . . F Kobe Mohr (9) pulled the Oil Kings to within a goal, on a PP, at 2:17 of the third period. . . . F Tomas Soustal (18) tied it at 19:25. . . . Kehler won it on a PP with his 27th goal of the season. . . . The Hitmen had a chance to go ahead 4-2 at 18:56 of the third period when F Luke Coleman was awarded a penalty. But he wasn’t able to score. . . . Edmonton was 2-6 on the PP; Calgary was 0-2. . . . The Oil Kings got 26 stops from G Josh Dechaine. . . . G Nick Schneider stopped 25 shots for Calgary. . . . Earlier in the day, the Oil Kings announced that they have added F Jake Neighbours to their roster for the remainder of the season, but he was a scratch from this one. From Airdrie, Alta., he was the fourth overall selection in the WHL’s 2017 bantam draft. This season, he had 26 goals and 31 assists in 33 games with the midget AAA Calgary Buffaloes. In three earlier games with the Oil Kings, he had one assist. . . . Announced attendance: 10,431.
At Red Deer, F Mason McCarty scored the only goal of a shootout to give the Rebels a 5-4 victory over the Kootenay Ice. . . . Red Deer (24-28-13) had won three in a row. It is third in the Central Division and now leads Kootenay (25-37-4) by seven points. The Ice, with six games left, has lost seven in a row (0-6-1). . . . Red Deer took a 1-0 lead when F Alex Morozoff (6) scored, on a PP, at 8:30 of the first period. . . . F Colton Kroeker (13) tied it at 10:59. . . . Red Deer took a 3-1 lead on second-period goals from McCarty (35), at 3:52, and F Reese Johnson (21), at 14:16. . . . The Ice tied it as F Michael King (8) scored at 16:23 of the second and F Colton Veloso (24) found the range any 15:29 of the third. . . . F Chris Douglas (9) put Red Deer out front, 4-3, at 16:43, only to have F Brett Davis (24) pull Kootenay even at 19:02. . . . The Rebels got two assists from F Brandon Hagel and one from McCarty. . . . F Peyton Krebs had two assists for the Ice. . . . Red Deer was 1-3 on the PP; Kootenay was 0-2. . . . G Riley Lamb recorded the victory with 27 saves. . . . Kootenay got 13 stops from Matt Berlin. . . . Red Deer was credited with two shots in the third period and three in OT. . . . The Rebels were without D Alex Alexeyev (hand), who left in the third period of their previous game and didn’t return. He could be gone for up to six weeks. . . . Announced attendance: 4,324.
At Kamloops, F Luc Smith scored twice to help the Blazers to a 5-1 victory over the Vancouver Giants. . . . Kamloops (29-32-5) has won two in a row but remains six points from a playoff spot. . . . Vancouver (32-22-9) had points in each of its previous two games (1-0-1). It is third in the B.C. Division, three points behind Victoria. . . . F Ryley Appelt (4) gave the Blazers a 1-0 lead at 7:08 of the first period, and F Connor Zary; (8) made it 2-0, on a PP, at 5:42 of the second period. . . . Smith upped it to 3-0 at 0:40 of the third period. . . . Vancouver got its goal from F Ty Ronning(55) at 7:34. . . . Smith (19) scored at 13:05 of the third, and D Brady Reagan (2) closed it out at 15:07. . . . F Jermaine Loewen had two assists for the winners, and Smith and Reagan each added one. . . . Kamloops was 1-4 on the PP; Vancouver was 0-1. . . . The Blazers got 30 saves from G Dylan Ferguson, who was sharp again. . . . G David Tendeck stopped 31 shots at the other end. . . . Kamloops continues to play without D Luke Zazula, whose return this season is in doubt. They also scratched D Montana Onyebuchi. . . . The Giants continue to play without D Dylan Plouffe, F Owen Hardy and F Milos Roman. . . . Announced attendance: 3,479.
At Portland, F Zack Andrusiak, who had two goals and two assists in regulation time, scored a shootout goal that gave the Seattle Thunderbirds a 5-4 victory over the Winterhawks. . . . Seattle (30-24-9) has won two in a row to remain six points ahead of Kamloops in the chase for the Western Conference’s second wild-card spot. The Thunderbirds hold three games in hand. . . . Portland (38-20-5) has points in four straight (3-0-1). It is second in the U.S. Division, two points ahead of Spokane. . . . Andrusiak gave Seattle a 1-0 lead at 14:27 of the first period, but Portland F Ty Kolle (6) tied it at 17:17. . . . Seattle took a 3-1 lead with the only goals of the second period, from Andrusiak (29), at 2:13, and F Donovan Neuls (21), at 8:19. . . . The Winterhawks grabbed a 4-3 third-period leads on goals from F Cody Glass (31), on a PP, at 9:47; F Joachim Blichfeld (22), at 9:53; and F Ryan Hughes (15), at 12:31. . . . Seattle forced OT when F Noah Philp (13) scored at 15:58. . . . Andrusiak and Philp scored shootout goals for Seattle, with Glass scoring for Portland. . . . Philp also had two assists, with Neuls getting one. . . . Philp has 45 points, including 13 goals, in 63 games with Seattle this season. In 132 games with Kootenay, prior to this season, he had 41 points, 14 of them goals. . . . Andrusiak has 63 points, including 29 goals, in 63 games. He went into this season with six goals and five assists in 67 games — 52 with Seattle, eight with Prince Albert and seven with Tri-City. . . . Portland got two assists from D Henri Jokiharju and one from Glass. . . . The Winterhawks were 1-1 on the PP; Seattle was 0-3. . . . G Liam Hughes stopped 36 shots through OT for Seattle. . . . The Winterhawks got 29 saves from G Cole Kehler. He started after watching G Shane Farkas go the distance in the previous three games. . . . Seattle had F Sami Moilanen back in the lineup after a 14-game absence. . . . Announced attendance: 6,124.
At Prince George, D Ryan Schoettler’s goal in OT gave the Cougars a 2-1 victory over the Victoria Royals. . . . Prince George (23-33-8) has won three straight games. . . . Victoria (35-24-6) has lost four in a row (0-3-1), but the loser point was enough for it to clinch a playoff spot for the seventh consecutive season — or each season since the franchise relocated from Chilliwack. It is second in the B.C. Division, six points behind Kelowna. . . . Prince George D Joel Lakusta (8) scored the game’s first goal, on a PP, at 5:00 of the third period. . . . Victoria tied it at 8:07 when F Noah Gregor scored his 26th goal, on a PP. . . . Schoettler won it with his seventh goal of the season, at 4:04 of extra time. . . . Victoria had F Tyler Soy and F Matthew Phillips back in the lineup, after both sat out Wednesday’s 5-1 loss in Kamloops. . . . Phillips drew an assist on Gregor’s goal, giving him 101 points this season. That ties the Chilliwack/Victoria franchise record that was set by F Mark Santorelli in 2007-08. . . . Victoria was 1-4 on the PP; Prince George was 1-9. . . . The Cougars got 32 saves from G Taylor Gauthier. . . . At the other end, G Griffen Outhouse, who also sat out the game in Kamloops, stopped 36 shots. . . . Announced attendance: 4,035.
At Kennewick, Wash., F Jaret Anderson-Dolan’s goal in OT gave the Spokane Chiefs a 5-4 victory over the Tri-City Americans. . . . Spokane (37-21-5) has won four in a row. It is third in the U.S. Division, six points ahead of Tri-City. . . . Tri-City (32-22-9) has lost two straight (0-1-1). . . . Spokane jumped out to a 2-0 lead on goals from F Ethan McIndoe (21), on a PP, at 9:03 of the first period. . . . D Dalton Hamaliuk (4) upped it to 2-0 just 36 seconds later. . . . The Americans scored the next three goals, with F Jordan Topping (36) counting at 12:29, F Morgan Geekie (24) scoring at 19:10, and D Dylan Coghlan (17) adding the third goal at 5:00 of the second period. . . . The Chiefs tied it on D Filip Kral’s seventh goal, on a PP, at 17:24. . . . Tri-City F Morgan Geekie (25) gave his guys the lead 50 seconds into the third period. . . . Spokane F Jake McGrew (17) tied it at 5:35. . . . Anderson-Dolan won it with his 35th goal at 3:51 of OT. . . . D Nolan Reid and F Hudson Elynuik each had two assists for the Chiefs, with Anderson-Dolan adding one. . . . Topping added an assist to his goal. . . . Spokane was 2-5 on the PP; Tri-City was 0-2. . . . G Dawson Weatherill stopped 36 shots for the Chiefs, three more than Tai-City’s Patrick Dea. . . . Announced attendance: 4,345.
At Everett, the Silvertips scored the game’s last four goals to beat the Kelowna Rockets, 4-2. . . . Everett (42-18-5) leads the Western Conference standings, by seven points over Kelowna. . . . Kelowna (38-21-6) has lost three in a row. . . . The Rockets led 2-0 on goals from F Carsen Twarynski (39), at 12:51 of the first period, and F Kole Lind (36), at 5:17 of the second. . . . F Matt Fonteyne (32) scored Everett’s first goal at 18:41. . . . The Silvertips tied it on F Patrick Bajkov’s 29th goal at 11:39 of the third period. . . . Everett F Connor Dewar broke the tie at 16:51, then added insurance with his 34th goal, on a PP, at 19:11. . . . F Garrett Pilon drew two assists for Everett, with Fonteyne getting one. . . . Bajkov’s goal was the 108th of his career and gave him the franchise record. That’s one more than F Tyler Maxwell scored with Everett. . . . The Silvertips were 1-4 on the PP; the Rockets were 0-1. . . . G Carter Hart recorded a 22-save victory. . . . G Brodan Salmond stopped 36 shots for the Rockets. . . . Announced attendance: 5,778.
SATURDAY (all times local):
Saskatoon at Moose Jaw, 7 p.m.
Lethbridge at Prince Albert, 7 p.m.
Brandon at Swift Current, 7 p.m.
Regina at Calgary,7 p.m.
Red Deer at Medicine Hat, 7:30 p.m.
Victoria at Prince George, 7 p.m.
Kamloops vs. Vancouver, at Langley, B.C., 7 p.m.
Seattle at Everett, 7:05 p.m.
Spokane at Kelowna, 7:05 p.m.
Portland vs. Tri-City, at Kennewick, Wash., 7:05 p.m.
TWEET OF THE DAY
We just wanted to say thank you to the BCHL teams that have reached out and to everyone that has reached out to help the 3 players and the Culbertson family! Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts!